The Best Washer and Dryer Sets for 2021
With technology that will save you time and money, these top-rated sets are about to become your new best friends—and there’s no better time to welcome them to your home.
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The latest and greatest options
Having a high-quality washer and dryer can be a total game changer. They can get the job done faster and more efficiently—and save you a bundle in the long run. Plus, if you choose wisely, your washer and dryer should last 10 years or more. If you haven’t invested in a new set for a few years, now’s the time. According to Eric Hagerman, Consumer Reports‘ Home & Appliance Editor, washers and dryers have undergone some serious technological improvements over the last few years. “Research shows that consumers say doing laundry takes too much time,” he explains. “Manufacturers have been trying to address this problem with machines that have bigger capacities, speed cycles, or built-in pretreat features.”
Companies have also been attempting to create dryers that simplify the experience for consumers. “The dryer also isn’t as humdrum as it once was,” Hagerman adds. “You’ll see multitasking dryers that allow you to dry two loads at once, all-in-one machines—front-loading washers that go straight into dryer mode—and dryers with movable control panels.”
So, how should you begin shopping for a pair? Start with the washing machine. “We recommend you pick based on the washer. The washer does most of the work and is a more complicated machine than the dryer,” Hagerman says. But make sure you do your research before buying your washer’s drying counterpart: “Manufacturers design some dryers so that they can be paired with a matching washer, but we’ve found in our testing that not all make a great couple.” No matter which models you choose, though, make sure you’re not doing any of these things that shorten the life of your washer and dryer.
Note: Prices listed were accurate as of press time; pricing fluctuations may occur.
What to look for—and when to look for it
Generally speaking, there are certain times of the year when it’s best to buy household appliances. Hagerman says that the best deals on washers and dryers are usually on or around Black Friday, but things may be a little different this year because there are some lingering supply issues due to the pandemic. It’s also better to look at this purchase as a long-term investment and not be tempted by super low prices. “For example, agitator top-loaders are typically the least expensive type of washing machine. But we’ve found that models under $500 usually earn mediocre ratings or worse in most of our washer tests, and they’re pretty noisy, too,” he warns. “If you can spend about $100 to $150 more, you’ll find more options and better overall performance.”
He also recommends sticking with reliable brands. You’ll definitely want to check Consumer Reports‘ latest Appliance Brand Reliability Rankings, which include LG, Speed Queen, and Miele in the top spots. And here are more of the most and least reliable home appliance brands on the market, according to other experts. We know—it’s a lot to look through and process. That’s why we’ve done the work for you and compiled this list of the 10 best washer and dryer sets for 2021. You’re welcome!
Best overall front-loading: LG Front Loading Smart Wi-Fi Washer and Electric Steam Dryer
This high-tech washer and dryer duo from LG is Hagerman’s top choice overall. The washer features a whopping 14 wash cycles and five temperature cycles, and it’s big enough for a large family. Both the washer and dryer feature the brand’s Smart ThinQ technology, allowing you to control the machines from your smartphone. And, get this: They also are equipped with LG’s TWIN Wash System. In addition to the main washer, there’s a Sidekick pedestal washer so you can add an additional load. As for the dryer, there are 14 preset drying cycles, each of them super quiet for minimal disruption. Here are more smart devices that are worth every penny.
Best overall top-loading: GE High-Efficiency Top Load Washing Machine with FlexDispense and Electric Vented Dryer
Front-load washers generally use less water and take a little longer than top-load washers. However, top-load washers are generally more efficient and have a longer life span. If you prefer a top-loading washer, then you aren’t going to do any better than this GE set, where functionality meets simplicity. The 4.8-cubic-foot appliance offers myriad features, including a Tide Pod dispenser, a stain removal guide that targets the five most common stains every cycle, and a Sanitize with OXI cycle. The matching dryer, which is 7.4 cubic feet, offers four drying and temperature settings and HE sensor dry, and it even alerts you when your clothes are amply damp to be removed for air drying. The set is also reasonably priced—ringing in at around $1,200 for both. Having problems with your current dryer but not sure it’s time to make the switch? Here’s how you can try to fix a clothes dryer that isn’t working.
Best for a tight budget: Amana Top Load Washing Machine and Vented Dryer
This no-frills washer and dryer—one of the best-selling and highest-rated sets at Home Depot—will get the job done, despite the fact that it doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles of more expensive models. The top-loading washer offers 3.5 cubic feet of space and features a center agitator that works to clean your clothes without damaging them. The maximum spin is less than more expensive models, but reviewers attest that it does an incredibly good job of cleaning clothes and getting rid of the excess water. As for the matching Amana dryer, it offers 6.5 cubic feet, moisture sensors, and even a wrinkle-free setting. By the way, do you know which things you should never put in your washing machine?
Most energy-efficient: Electrolux Front Load Washer with SmartBoost Technology and Electric Dryer
Saving energy isn’t just good for your bank account, as less power equates to less money—it’s also good for the environment. Investing in an energy-efficient washer and dryer might cost more up front, but you will save money in the long run. This washer from Electrolux has been endorsed by Energy Star as the most efficient on the market. According to the brand, it uses only 60kWh of energy annually, which is equivalent to $6. (Yes, you read that right!) The electric dryer also ensures efficiency with an automatic drying sensor. But don’t worry: It still gets the washing and drying done and offers a bunch of cool features, and reviewers rave that it has top-notch stain-fighting abilities. Don’t miss these other clever ways to slash your home energy bills.
Easiest to use: Maytag Large-Capacity Top Load Washer and Electric Dryer
In today’s “smart” world, many of us have a tendency to believe that the most high-tech products are the best. However, when it comes to washers and dryers, some people swear that the more basic models not only get the job done but also have fewer issues and are much easier to use. This reasonably priced Maytag set may look like the one you grew up with decades ago, but the washer actually boasts 3.8 cubic feet of wash space and a few efficient cycle options, including PowerWash and Quick Wash, which manages to clean a load in just 30 minutes. Maytag’s matching dryer is similarly simple, with 7 cubic feet of drying space, an IntelliDry sensor to track moisture, and a winkle-control option. Both feature extremely easy-to-use dial controls. Ready to buy? Here’s how to get rid of your old appliances to make way for the new ones.
Best for large families: Maytag Top Load Washing Machine with Extra Large Capacity and Electric Vented Dryer
According to Consumer Reports, a small washer is usually 3.2 cubic feet and can hold 12 to 14 pounds of laundry; a medium is 4.5 cubic feet with 14 to 16 pounds of laundry capacity; and a large is 5 to 6.2 cubic feet, offering 20 to 25 pounds of wash. If you have a bigger family and aren’t able to get your laundry done efficiently with a traditionally sized washer and dryer—for example, you have to do two loads of darks instead of one—you should consider a larger-capacity set like this one from Maytag.
This oversized pair, which will take up more space than the one already in your laundry room, will make your life a lot easier. The washer offers a whopping 6.0 cubic feet of drum space, while the dryer offers 9.2 cubic feet. As for features, the washer has a stainless steel wash basket and center agitator, while the dryer offers 10 dry cycles, including a PowerDry cycle to get the job done quickly. They are also both Energy Star–efficient, promising to save you $4,200 on utility bills over their lifetime. These genius ways to save on other household bills will also make a big difference in your bank account.
Best stackable set: Miele Stacked Front Load Washer and Elecric Dryer Set
$2,497 for the set
If you don’t have a lot of space devoted to laundry, a stackable washer and dryer set is your best bet. Miele, another Consumer Reports favorite, offers the majority of their washers and dryers with a stackable option. This 24-inch washer and dryer combo features the brand’s honeycomb drum, a web-like structure that creates a thin film of water between your laundry and the drum that ultimately helps protect the fibers of your clothing. It also automatically adjusts to the weight of the load. For example, a smaller load would use less water and power than a larger one.
Other features include CapDosing, which uses portioned capsules to dispense detergents, and a whopping 12 wash cycles. As for the dryer, it features Miele’s PerfectDry technology (which detects the mineral content of the water in order to modify the drying process to precision), offers 12 cycles, and is energy efficient. If you’re tight on space, you’ll appreciate these storage hacks from people living in tiny houses.
Best for small spaces: LG Compact Front Load Washer and Stackable Electric Ventless Dryer
If you live in an apartment, small house, or just don’t have room for a larger washer and dryer, there are plenty of smaller-sized options for you to choose from. This 24-inch high-efficiency front-load washer from LG offers 2.3 cubic feet capacity—perfect for a single person or couple. It boasts features such as a stainless steel tub, a Direct Drive Motor (which uses fewer moving parts making it more efficient), and nine wash programs. The LG dryer that goes with this model offers a whopping 14 cycle choices and is totally ventless—meaning it can be used in situations where external venting is not possible. The dryer also comes with a kit that allows you can stack the machines. Having an issue with your current dryer? It’s one of the appliances that are cheaper to replace than to fix.
Best splurge: LG Signature Front Load Smart Wi-Fi Washer and Gas Dryer
$1,799 and $1,889
If you are one of those people who will settle for nothing less than the best and are willing to pay for it, then the LG Signature collection is a no-brainer. This luxurious washer and dryer set is basically the Mercedes-Benz of the bunch. The black stainless steel washer is sleek, sophisticated, and feature-heavy, offering 5.8 cubic feet of space and 14 cycle options, while the 9-cubic-foot dryer has 14 drying options with a Turbosteam function. Both also boast super smart features that have Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility. And did we mention they are both absolutely gorgeous? They’re truly the perfect addition to an impeccably designed laundry room.
Most reliable: Speed Queen Top Load Washer and Electric Dryer
$1,848 for the set
If you’re looking for a snazzy, high-tech-looking washer and dryer, keep scrolling. However, if you want a set that is going to last forever, then read on. Hagerman, along with most consumer experts, maintains that Speed Queen is one of the most reliable washer and dryer brands on the planet. This no-frills set might look like something your grandparents had in their laundry room, but it is “the little engine that could” of washers and dryers. The washer is 3.2 cubic feet and offers six preset cycles, four temperature options, and a maximum spin cycle of 710 RPM. The dryer offers four preset cycles, a timed dry of up to 75 minutes, and three auto-dry cycles. Choose wisely when you purchase a new washer-dryer set and it’ll last you for years—especially if you know these 12 ways to extend the life of your appliances.