Although front-loading washing machines generally fare better than top-loaders in professional tests, they also tend to cost more. The Samsung WF210ANW/XAA, however, offers the efficiency of a front-loader for the price of a top-loader. This basic 3.5-cubic-foot washer has a limited number of wash cycles and options, and it is available only in white. However, it does comply with Energy Star standards, and it gets good overall ratings from users.
In professional tests, its performance is mixed: though it's very efficient and gentle on clothes, its cleaning performance and noise level are only so-so, and it vibrates more than most washers. Users generally find the machine quiet and easy to use, but they are divided over its cleaning performance. While most say it cleans well, some complain that it doesn't really remove dirt and odors. The long cycle time is also a problem for some, although others point out that drying time is reduced because the washer spins clothes nearly dry.
If you are willing to pay more for more solid performance and more features, the Maytag Maxima MHW6000XW (*Est. $1,100) gets good ratings and is even more efficient than the Samsung.
The Samsung WF210ANW/XAA included in the latest tests of front-loading and top-loading washers at ConsumerReports.org, which rates them on such factors as washing performance, efficiency, vibration and gentleness. We found more than 450 user reviews for this washer at retail sites, including BestBuy.com, Lowes.com and Sears.com. We also found information about customer satisfaction with the Samsung brand as a whole in the annual Appliance Survey conducted by J.D. Power and Associates.
The Samsung WF210ANW/XAA is one of nearly 70 front-loading washers tested at ConsumerReports.org. Each washer is rated on its cleaning performance, water and energy use, capacity, gentleness to clothing, noise level and vibration
Review: Washing Machines, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, As of June 2012
Users at Lowes.com have posted more than 300 reviews for the Samsung WF210ANW/XAA, giving it an overall rating of 4.4 stars out of 5. Owners generally find this washer quiet, efficient and easy to use, but they complain about the long cycle time and noise level. There are some complaints about reliability as well.
Review: Samsung 3.5 Cu. Ft. Stackable Front-Load Washer (Color: White) ENERGY STAR, Contributors to Lowes.com
The Samsung WF210ANW/XAA earns an overall rating of 4.4 stars from more than 110 users at BestBuy.com. Owners praise the washer's quietness, efficiency and ease of use, but some complain that it leaves clothes "dingy and smelly," in the words of one user.
Review: Samsung - 3.5 Cu. Ft. 6-Cycle High-Efficiency Washer - White, Contributors to BestBuy.com
We found about 45 reviews for the Samsung WF210ANW/XAA at Sears.com, with an overall rating of 4 stars out of 5. Though users appreciate the machine's quiet operation, stylish looks and low price tag, there are several complaints about odor (in the machine and in clothes).
Review: Samsung Front-load Washing Machine 3.5 cubic feet ENERGY STAR, Contributors to Sears.com
5. J.D. Power & Associates
In this survey, more than 5,600 consumers who have recently bought washing machines rate their overall satisfaction. For the third year in a row, Samsung receives the highest ratings, based on performance, features, style, price, warranty and ease of use. Individual models are not evaluated, however.
Review: Home Appliance Study, Editors of J.D. Power and Associates, Aug. 3, 2011