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How Do I Choose the Best Automatic Washing Machine?

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  • Written By: Donna Johnson
  • Edited By: Nancy Fann-Im
  • Last Modified Date: 20 September 2016
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Many people consider home appliances to be major purchases. As such, all options should be carefully considered before making the final decision on which brand or model to buy. Important factors to consider when choosing the best automatic washing machine include your laundry demands, purchase and operating costs, and warranty options.

If your family generates a lot of laundry, either because of the number of members or because clothing is frequently soiled, you will need a heavy-duty automatic washing machine. These models typically feature a stainless steel tub rather than the plastic tub available in other machines. Plastic tubs are more prone to cracking, and therefore leaking, especially under heavy laundry demands. Heavy-duty washing machines also generally offer multiple wash settings, allowing you to put heavily soiled clothing through an extended wash cycle to get it clean the first time.

The purchase price of an automatic washing machine is also an important factor for most people to consider. Stores in the United States generally offer sales around major holidays such as President's Day. Retailers everywhere usually mark down their stock, including display models, toward the end of the year in preparation for receiving the newest models. If possible, wait until one of these times to buy a new washing machine.

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Along with purchase price, the operating cost should also be considered. Generally, a smaller capacity automatic washing machine costs less per load to operate than a larger unit, but if you need to do a lot of laundry, multiple loads can negate those savings. Many countries now feature Energy Star certification on products such as home appliances. Washing machines that display the Energy Star label are more efficient in their use of energy and water than older units or even new non-Energy Star rated models are. Opting for an Energy Star rated washer may result in a higher purchase price, but the cost difference may be recouped over time in utility savings.

Each automatic washing machine comes with an in-store and manufacturer's warranty, each of which varies by store, brand and model. If something goes wrong with the unit during the first 30 days after purchase, you can usually return it to the store for exchange. After that, the manufacturer's warranty takes over and problems are typically handled via repair rather than replacement. Most manufacturers’ warranties cover issues during the first year of ownership, but some stores offer extended protection plans for an additional cost. If the cost to repair or replace a washing machine unexpectedly would create a financial hardship for you, look for a model in your price range with the longest warranty coverage and consider purchasing an extended warranty as well.

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Spotiche5
Post 2

I have always bought my automatic washing machines at yard sales or from the clearance section of appliance stores. These inexpensive machines have worked perfectly fine for me, and I have also saved a lot of money in with my discount washing machine purchases.

Talentryto
Post 1

I think that discount washing machines work just as well as the new high-tech models that can be very expensive. I have a friend who bought a top-of-the-line front load washing machine, and she doesn't think that it washes her clothes as well as her cheap, 1990s model did. She wishes she had her old one back!

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