If you live in an apartment or small house with no washer-dryer hookups, you likely are a frequent customer of the nearest laundromat. And unless the laundromat is your favorite hangout, you might be weary of packing quarter rolls and laundry bags to and fro, paying well over a dollar for each load. On top of that, you’re sacrificing several hours a week waiting for an available machine and guarding your tumbling delicates. Enter the portable washing machine, a simple and affordable solution to the laundromat woes.
Portable washers are surprisingly effective despite their small size. Though they average a little less than half the load capacity of regular-sized washing machines, these compacts get clothes just as clean as a normal washing machine. Smaller load sizes equals less water and detergent used, meaning you save money. Plus, small compact mini washers fit almost anywhere. To learn more, read articles on portable washers in our Learning Center.
With the choice between temporary or permanent installation, portable washers are a viable option for a variety of consumers. Their small design makes them ideal for saving space or easy storage. Mobility makes for flexible laundering when and where you want. For optimum performance, try the one of the best portable washers like the Haier HLP23E, Whirlpool LCE4332PQ or Kenmore 4472. Peruse our best portable washing machine comparisons and reviews to find out which one is right for you. All you need is some dirty clothes and a sink.
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Portable Washing Machines: What to Look For
Most portable washing machines are easy to use with a uniform set of basic functions. However, superior washers with straightforward application and bonus features rated the highest in our lineup. These ratings are based on the following qualities:
Even a conveniently small and portable washing machine comes with various cycles and features. All but one washer we rated had a cycle for delicate fabrics and all included a faucet adaptor for easy, temporary installation. Most also included a removable lint filter, an indicator to the time remaining in a cycle and an option for a spin-only cycle to rid clothes of excess moisture. We also rated washers on how many additional cycles they offered and whether you can select elements of cycles individually to create different, custom combinations.
Ease of Use
The compact nature of portable washers makes them much more manageable to lug around than traditional or commercial-sized machines. Mobility, a vital advantage of these units, is made simpler with additions like casters on the bottom of the units so they can be rolled instead of lifted. If lifting is necessary, cabinet handles can support the task. We also rated ease of use on features like dispensers for detergent, softener and bleach, automatic water levels and safety precautions such as one that prevents the washer from running while the lid is open.
They may not come in flashy colors, but our top-rated compact washers featured valuable design properties such as adjustable legs for stability on uneven surfaces and installable plates for quieter operation. We also included the annual electricity usage for each machine for carbon footprint-conscious (and budget-conscious) consumers.
Help & Support
Direct customer support is assuring when investing in any appliance. We rated these portable washing machines on the availability of assistance through telephone, email correspondence, online FAQs and user manuals, and the simplicity of receiving such assistance. All the washers had a one-year warranty on labor but varied in lengths for parts warranties. Longer warranties led us to believe the manufacturer was confident in the durability of their machine, which, in turn, gave us confidence.
If your busy schedule no longer fits with the hours of the local laundromat, a portable washing machine is the answer. Do laundry on your own schedule and save money, time and space. Conveniently clean clothes are just around the corner. Just add water.
|Haier HLP23E||Whirlpool LCE4332PQ||Kenmore 4472||Haier HLP21N||Danby DWM99W|
|Tub Material||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel|
|Capacity (cubic feet)||1.46||2.1||2.1||1||1.3|
|Maximum Spin RPM||not specified||700||not specified||not specified||1200|
|Water Level Settings||4||2||2||3||4|
|Remaining Time Indicator|
|Quick Wash Cycle|
|End of Cycle Signal|
|Ease of Use|
|Automatic Water Level|
|Annual Electricity Usage (kWh)||350||not specified||384||214||537|
|Parts Warranty (years)||7||10||10||7||1|
|Labor Warranty (years)||1||1||1||1||1|