A front load washing machine next to a washing basket and drying rack

Top Loader vs. Front Loader Washing Machines

Buying a washing machine in New Zealand used to be a simple task as there was only really one type available—the top load washing machine. However, front loader machines have now become a staple in the NZ market, finding their way into many homes around the country.


Top loaders wash clothes by moving them around with an agitator in the centre of the drum. On the other hand, front loaders have a drum that spins to clean the clothes in a similar motion to a tumble dryer. Keep reading to learn more about the key differences between the two and how to choose the right sort for your household!


1. Cycle Time

How long it takes for a wash cycle to complete is an important factor to consider. This is especially important for those with a big family who may need to get a few loads done in one day.


If you are looking for time efficiency, a top loader is the way to go. The configuration of top loaders means the items in the drum are constantly submerged in water, allowing for a faster clean. Don’t let this completely deter you from front-loaders though, as the time of a cycle also depends on the size of the load. If you are someone who does small loads more frequently, a front loader with a sensor function will be able to reduce the time of the cycle.


2. Wash Quality

When it comes to wash quality, both top loaders and have front loaders have unique strengths. If your wardrobe consists of mainly hand-wash items that you need to take good care of, then we recommend a front loader. Since front loaders don’t have an agitator, they are much gentler on clothes and won’t twist or wring them in a harsh way.


For those looking for superior wash quality in terms of a deep clean, we recommend a top loader. The combination of having an agitator plus allowing the clothes to be completely submerged in water means a more thorough clean can be achieved. This would be ideal for those with little kids, or someone whose clothes go through a lot of wear and tear.


3. Capacity

Top loaders used to take the cake when it came to wash size, however these days front loaders are being created with the ability for extra capacity. For example, the largest Midea front loader can handle a 10kg load, whereas the largest top loader can take a 10kg load. Therefore, there isn’t much in it when it comes to a max capacity wash.


4. Placement

One of the main reasons many people go for a front loader is that they take up less room in the laundry. They can even easily fit under a kitchen bench or in a closet without being an eyesore. Front loaders also provide the ability to stack with other appliances such as a tumble dryer to save even more room.


5. Price

When front loaders first came onto the market, they were much more expensive. Now there isn’t a big difference in cost between the two and there are many affordable front load machines available. The real fluctuation in cost comes from looking at the size of the machine and any advanced capabilities that could boost the price.


6. Efficiency

Efficiency is another important consideration that can impact your wallet and the planet. If you’re looking for a green machine, a front loader is the best option to consider. Front loaders use less water, as they rotate clothes through a pool of water at the bottom of the drum, whereas top loaders need to fill with enough water to cover the load entirely.


Get the right washing machine for your household with Midea

At Midea, we know that no two households are the same, and everyone has different needs when it comes to getting their laundry done. That’s why we have two quality lines of both top loader and front load washing machines, so you can make the best choice for your specific situation. Whether you want a nifty front loader to tuck under the kitchen bench or need a top loader that can get the job done fast, we have the washing machines for you.


Browse our range of washing machines online or visit our appliance showroom in Newmarket Auckland and Christchurch City today!