Washing Machine Buyers Guide

Modern day washing machines are more advanced than ever before. They are now able to cater for a huge number of washing demands at the turn of a dial. From machines with advanced washing cycles, different drum capacities and noise levels, energy-efficient ratings and super-fast spin speeds; It’s hard to know what you’re looking for.   At NewLife Appliances we sell new, unused and refurbished washing machines often at more than 50% of RRP. If it wasn’t already sweet enough, all our washing machines come with 12 months warranty!

Drum - March 20th, 2011 (79/365)

Washing machine size

There are two main types of washing machine; free-standing and integrated. First question you should ask yourself when shopping for a new washing machine is, where is my washing machine going to go? A free-standing machine can easily be slotted underneath your kitchen work tops with the front of the machine on show. The most common dimensions for a free-standing washing machine are; 850 x 600 x 550 mm H x W x D. However, these measurements do vary from machine to machine by as much as 50mm so you have to make sure you measure the area before you purchase. Integrated models are a great option if you want to keep your machine out of sight, these are typically 820 x 595 x 550 mm (H x W x D)

Spin speeds

Spin speeds range from 1000rpm (rotations per minute) all the way up to 18,000rpm. The higher the number of rotations per minute the lower your drying time will be, great for saving your time and energy. As a rule of thumb you can expect to pay more for the machines with the faster spin speeds. If intend to wash delicate items of clothing you should consider getting a machine with variable spin speeds. With these you can adjust the spin speed of the machine reducing the rpm ensuring your fragile items don’t get damaged.

  • Washing machine speeds range from 1,000 rpm all the wa up to 18,000rpm
  • Faster spins can be noisier, especially it not set up correctly
  • Higher rpm usually means a high price tag

Load Capacity

The most common drum size for a washing machine is 7kg however there are machine that go all the way up to 12kg and right down to 3.5kg load capacity.   To put this in terms of laundry if you have a 7kg drum on your washing machine each wash you can load;

Guide showing you the correct amount to load into your washing machine.

  • 20 x pairs of socks/underwear
  • 5 x small towels
  • 4x trousers/jeans
  • 10 x lightweight tops
  • 2 x pairs of pillowcases or 1 jumper
  • 2 x bed sheets/table cloths or 1 x duvet cover
  • For additional help you can refer to our guide on how much should I put in washing machine?

How to know what drum size to get?

The best way to make a decision about the drum size of your machine is to work out how many washes per week you’ll be doing.

Less than 4 washes per week
5-6kg drum

4 – 6 washes per week
7kg drum
6+ washes per week
8 – 12kg drum

Might also be worth noting that machines with larger drums result in less creased cloths and fewer knots.

  • Drum sizes start at 3.5kg and go up to 12kg
  • The average drum size is 7kg
  • When a machine refers to its maximum capacity this load is usually calculated with its main cotton program – different programs will have different capacities
  • It's better to buy a drum size that you'll be able to consistently fill.

Energy rating

Anyone new washing machine that has gone on sale from December 2013 has to have a minimum energy rating of A+. However, you are still able to purchase older machines with a lower rating. Every kitchen appliance will have an industry-standard energy-efficient rating label. The rating is system is graded from;

A+++++ being the most efficient
G being the worst

Appliances with an A+++++ rating will be the most efficient, best for the environment and easier on your utility bills.  Many modern machines are able to achieve amazing results with both energy consumption and cleaning results on a 30° wash. Washing at 30° instead of 40° will reduce your energy consumption by 40% and lower your utility bills. According to Waterwise, if a washing machine uses less than 7.5 liters of water per wash it is considered efficient.

  • Yearly running costs of a washing machine can range from £12 to £53 per year
  • The average washing machine bill comes in at £26
  • As a rule of thumb the larger the drum size the large the bill



Usually the more additional functions a washing machine has the more it will cost. Most machine settings are designed in accordance to the fiber of cloths, spin speed and temperature requirements. Depending on your needs other features may be worth investing in. For example; child lock, baby cycle, half wash, heavy duty and fast washes to list just a few – certain companies use different names for their washing machine functions.

Timer delay

Although it’s technically a program, it’s so useful we decided to give it its own special mention. Timer delays give you the ability to choose when your machine comes on. Great feature if you have a cheap electricity traffic during off-peak hours or are getting your energy via solar.

 Fuzzy logic

This is an incredibly intelligent technology that monitors the internal environment of the machine. It adjusts the time of the cycle, the amount of detergent needed, the amount of water required to rinse and finally the amount of energy used depending on the load. This ensures you get maximum results with minimum waste.
Note: some manufacturers may name this intelligent technology differently, so be careful when you are choosing.



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