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​Top loader washing machines are really popular in America, Australia and Asia, but they're a rarity here in the UK.

This is largely due to how little space we have. In the UK, we tend to fit our machines under a bench; in other countries, a dedicated laundry room, a basement or even a balcony is more commonplace.

Some Brits still prefer them because they can offer faster cycle times, their design means you don't need to bend down (great if you've got a bad back) and you can add things into the wash mid-cycle.

Here are our top 5 top loaders on the UK market in 2019.

   ​The Best UK Top Loaders 
in 2019

Hotpoint WMTF 722 H Washing Machine - White
Woolmark Platinum - Certified soft and gentle care for woollens.
£419.00
Montpellier MTL6120W 6kg 1200rpm Freestanding Top Loading Washing Machine-White
1200 rpm - helps remove more moisture from your clothes
£339.00
Thompson X11-1 Twin Tub Washer (Washing Machine & Spin Dryer) FULL SIZE
Call 01905 763376 for more details or to order. Over 9000 Thompson Twin Tubs Sold. UK's number 1 full size machine.
£279.83

Last update on 2019-11-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Features To Consider

These appliances do the same job as font-loading machines, but there are some key differences you need to look out for.

Capacity - As there is such a low demand on the UK market, the capacity tends to be around the standard 7kg.

There are one or two bigger ones (such as this one) but they are much more expensive.

Dimensions – Top loading machines are much more slimline and slightly taller than regular washers.

Front loaders are usually around 60cm wide by 80 cm tall.

Top loaders are usually around 40cm wide by 90cm tall.

This means they can get into narrower gaps, but probably won't be able to go under a counter. You also need to leave some clearing distance for the top to open.

Energy-Efficiency - Due to their design these appliances tend to be less energy-efficient that front loading machines.

You can expect "A+" to be an average rating, where for front loaders it would be "A++".

That's not to say there aren't any "A+++" models - we've included one on our list. Just that they are a bit more expensive.

Spin Speed - The spin speed is usually slower than front loaders.

If you shop around, you can still find some that are 1200 rpm, and this rivals quite a few "regular" washers.

A slower speed doesn't necessarily affect washing performance, but it does mean clothes will be wetter after the cycle is complete.

This results in more time and energy spent drying them.

Noise - As a general rule, you can expect top loads to be slightly louder during regular spin - but there's not much in it!

The best top loading washing machines should produce under 80db during high-spin and around 50db during regular spin.

Washing Performance - You can expect the washing performance to be pretty similar. After all, millions of people use this style and have only used this style.

One thing worth noting is that washing cycles can be faster with top loading machines.


​​Top Loading Washing Machine Reviews

Here are our reviews of the best top loads on the UK market in 2019.

Another well-know brand offering top loading washing machines for the UK market is Whirlpool. And their TDLR 602010 has a lot to like - regardless of the design.

For starters, this washer is just 40 cm wide. That's perfect if you want to get it into a narrow space or a tall cupboard.

It's also rated the maximum A+++ for energy efficiency, and is estimated to use just 174 kw/h per year (about £27). 

Whirlpool Toploader

A great feature about this design over regular loaders is it's much easier to get your washing out. You can open the door with one hand and you don't need to bend down.
 
Whirlpool have also added a "Drum Up" feature which moves everything higher. So you don't need to go head-first looking for that long lost sock!

This model also comes with Whirlpool's "Sixth Sense" technology". This intelligently measures the size and type of loads and makes adjustments to the water and cycle time.

There's also "Colours 15", a programme which lets you wash colours at 15 degrees and get the same performance as a 40 degree program. This saves energy and money from not having to heat the water.

Even though this model isn't described as a "Washer/Dryer", it does have a "Freshcare" tumble cycle. This helps reduce your drying time and ensure your clothes are nice and fresh when they come out.

The big downside with this model is it's pretty expensive. I'm not sure if it's because they're so unique in the UK, but in general top loaders cost much more than front-loaders.

Pros

  • A+++ Energy-Efficiency
  • Slimline
  • Load-weighing sensors
  • Tumble dry cycle
  • 15-degree colours programme
  • 2-Years Warranty

​Cons

  • Expensive
  • 6 kg not big enough for families

No review of UK household appliances would be complete without Hotpoint, which has been one of the most popular ​brands for many decades. 

The Hotpoint WMTF 722H is a top-loader with a 7 kg capacity.

That’s enough for a smaller family or a couple, though a larger family may struggle.

It comes with a massive 10-year parts and one-year labour warranty; that is, believe us, very impressive.

What we particularity like about this one is it's easy to load and the digital controls are easy-to-use.

Hotpoint WMTF 722 H

With dimensions of 60cm by 40cm by 90cm, so it is slim and compact. Just be aware you do need to leave around a foot-and-a half clearance for the top to open.

Here is a short video from Hotpoint to show you more.

​Another plus for this model is it's been awarded "A++" for energy-efficiency and only uses 9,600 litres of water a year.

On the noise front, it puts out 76db at high-spin which is reasonably quiet.

There's also a nice range of features, including the choice of three fast washes (15,30 and 60 minutes) and a wool program which keeps your delicates soft and gentle.

Overall, this is a solid choice for a freestanding washing machine and it's sensibly priced, too.

Pros

  • ​Easy-To-Use
  • 1200 rpm Spin
  • A++ Energy-Efficiency
  • Slimline
  • ​3 Fast Cycles
  • 10-Year Parts Warranty

​Cons

  • ​Not the quietest
  • ​No alarm to indicate cycle finished

Bosch is one of those brands that seems to have a product in every single area of the household appliances arena, and it is also a brand you can trust. 

​As you would expect with German engineering, this freestanding washer is rated A+++​. It uses just 174kw / h - exactly the same as the Whirlpool model we reviewed above.

​It is quite louder during regular  spin though at 59 db for low spin and 76db during fast spin.

​This Bosch Serie 4 model does excel in washing programmes though.​

Bosch Toploader

​There are some nifty features like "ActiveWater", which intelligently weighs your load and makes adjustments to save water and energy.

There's also an allergy-setting (the only model on our list to have this) which washes clothes at high-temperatures to kill more bacteria and allergens.

And if you're the forgetful kind (or your kids are!) there is an "Add on" feature where you can stop the cycle and add in more clothes. There is an auto-lock feature to prevent opening during high-temperature parts of the wash as well.

Other features include a variable spin speed, a 24-hour delay timer and a fast wash.

​Bosch provide a 2-year parts and services warranty with all there appliances, too.

One final note if you're interested in this one. The Serie 4 is 90cm tall, but you need to leave another 40cm (i.e 1 meter 30cm in total)

Pros

  • ​A+++ energy rated
  • Load Balancing Tech
  • ​Can Add Items Mid-Spin
  • 24-Hour Delay Timer
  • ​Fast Cycle
  • Variable Speeds
  • ​Anti-Allergy Programme

​Cons

  • Not the quietest

Montpellier is a new UK appliance brand and they were established in 2012 in Gloucestershire.

It's pretty clear that they aim to compete on price - which is no bad thing.

At first glance, this 6 kg toploading washer looks the same as the Whirlpool model for a fraction of the price.

While it's true you don't get some of the features there is much to like here.

Thompson Twin Tub

First - the similarities. Both have a 6 kg capacity, a 1200 rpm spin speed and are a slimline 40cm in depth.

The big difference is this Montpelier model is only rated A+ for energy efficiency. That's 2 whole grades below Whirlpool's A+++.

This means it will be more expensive to run and use more water. The extra energy expenditure is not great. But from a financial viewpoint, the lower retail price will offset several years running costs.

You also get the standard 15 washing programmes which include a 30-minute fast wash. There's a 24-hour delay timer, a child lock and an LCD screen that's easy to see and operate.

An interesting feature with this particular model is it will stop if the load is unbalanced. This does annoy quite a few users. However, it's a safety feature designed to prolong the life of your appliance. Which is no bad thing at all.

All told, this is a great toploader available at a sensible price. We just wish it did a bit better in the energy-efficiency stakes.

Pros

  • Great Price
  • 30-minute Fast Wash
  • 24-hour Delay timer
  • Load balance safety feature
  • Child lock
  • 2-Years Parts & Labour Warranty

​Cons

  • Only A+ Energy-Efficiency

​We round out our list with an older design given new life by modern technology.

The Thompson Twin Tub is a top loading washing machine with an attached spin dryer​.

​​​If you haven't come across twin tubs before, you need to know they are not "automatic" washing machines.

This means you don't need to plumb them in. You can just fill them from a tap with the hose that comes with it.

​There is a draining pipe so you obviously need either a drain or a sink in close proximity,

​At just 24kg, it's quite light when empty and can be moved to make things more convenient.

Thompson Twin Tub

A couple more things you do need to know about this particular model.

First - the size. It's slightly shorter than the other freestanders on our list at 86cm, but the extra tub means it's almost twice the width at 75cm.

​It's capacity is 6kg, so that's a bit less than the standard 7kg on our list.

However, users report they can get washing done and on the line in just 15 minutes, so it's quick if you need multiple loads.

It also has a fast, 1400rpm spin speed, so will get your clothes dry enough to iron.

On the down side, there is a lot of plastic with this design and this could put people off.

​Being a lesser-known brand, spares are harder to come buy.  There is a 1-year guarantee included and you can contact the manufacturer direct on their website here.

Pros

  • ​Twin-Tub Design
  • ​1400 rpm spin speed
  • Quick Cycle Time
  • ​Can pre-soak clothes
  • ​No plumbing in required
  • Light & moveable

​Cons

  • Spares hard to come by
  • Needs to be near sink

Our Top Freestanding Pick!

​There's not a lot of choice for a great toploading washing machine in the UK.

However, one model that stands out is the Hotpoint 

Still, one design than has the specs and programmes to rival any of it front-loading friends is the Hotpoint WMTF 722H.

We love ​how it has 3 different fast washes, easy-to-use digital controls, and a 10-year parts guarantee.


Hotpoint WMTF 722 H Washing Machine - White
23 Reviews
Hotpoint WMTF 722 H Washing Machine - White
  • Woolmark Platinum - Certified soft and gentle care for woollens.
  • A+ Energy Rating - Less energy consumption means cheaper bills.
  • A+ Energy Rating - Less energy consumption means cheaper bills.

Last update on 2019-11-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API