Even though most washing machines are generally uniform in size, their weights can differ considerably. An average washer weighs anything from approximately 135 pounds to 205 pounds, or 60 – 90 kg.
The average weight of a washing machine is about 170 pounds. The size of the counterweight load and the washer capacity dictates the final weight of the washing machine. Generally, the top-loading machines are lighter than the front-loading machines due to the smaller counterbalance load required in the top loaders.
Hefty matters. What Makes up the Washing Machine Weight?
Each washing machine is different in design, and therefore its final weight varies depending on the brand and model you choose. The final weight of each machine is dictated by the weight of its components like the washing load drum, motor, and the agitator arms that move the clothes inside the machine.
The older models were substantially heavier than the newer ones because their components were made of heavier materials. Many of the parts used to be manufactured using steel and copper metals which are heavier than the aluminum and plastic that replaced the heavy metals in the latest models.
For example, many machine manufacturers have replaced the traditional, heavy stainless steel drum with a lighter plastic drum that still holds the clothes and ensures adequate laundry cleaning.
Another major component that adds weight to the washing machine is the counterbalance block. Every machine needs to have a counterbalanced block to ensure its stability.
As the clothes load gets agitated and moves within the drum, mixing with water and detergent to ensure that the detergent penetrates the fabric, the circular drum holding the load vibrates as it spins, and the centrifugal forces of the clothes pressing against the sides of the drum need to be contained; otherwise, the machine will shake itself loose from its position into the middle of the room.
In the past, the counterbalance was achieved using cement blocks that weighed at least 25kg to ensure the machine stayed in one spot. That extra weight is needed, especially during the spinning cycle.
If you consider that the average washing machine spins the load at between 1000 and 1600 RPM, then it is no wonder the whole thing needs to be stabilized. Usually, the machine that produces higher spinning speeds results in a drier washing load.
Of course, placing a solid cement block in the machine’s casing means that the overall weight of the machine unit is permanently increased.
To reduce the initial weight of the machine, the recent improvement in the manufacturing design has replaced the weight of the solid concrete block with a plastic reservoir that is empty during transport and filled with water only once the washing machine has reached the customer and is installed in its permanent spot.
The water’s weight takes the place of the environmentally unfriendly concrete. Taking away the counterbalance weight means the machine is lighter during shipping and transporting. Making it more eco-friendly.
Why Must You Know the Weight of Your Washing Machine?
It is important to find out the exact weight of your machine in case you need to move it. If you are moving house or renovating your present house and are building a new laundry room, you may need to find out exactly how heavy your machine is.
Determining this information is not difficult; it is as simple as looking it up in the instruction manual from the manufacturer.
The weight of your washing machine will dictate how many people you will need to move it because it is not possible for one person to lift and move a washing machine on their own. (Just in case you are wondering about that.)
Also, you may need to get a moving dolly for transferring it to the moving truck so that no one is injured during the move.
If you are using a moving company to ship your belongings to the new house, they will also want to know how heavy your machine is to determine the weight of the total moving load. Using a reliable moving company will ensure that your washing machine will arrive safely at your new destination.
The recent trend of people living in “tiny” houses or converted mobile homes could be another reason why it may be important for you to find out exactly how much your washing machine weighs.
The exterior structure of the mobile home needs to be strong enough to support the washing machine’s weight and the forces exerted by the washing load without generating any undue wear and tear on it.
You may need to consider purchasing a lighter model to ensure it fits into the “tiny” home.
Why are there such weight discrepancies in washing machines?
No two machines weigh the same amount due to the differences in the weight of the manufactured parts and design.
Available washers on the market are usually designed in two configurations, a front-loading (with the round window in the front panel) or a top-loading machine (with the laundry placed through a flap on top of the machine).
The top-loading machines are usually lighter than the front-loading ones. The average weight of a top-loading machine is about 135 pounds, which is much less than the 170 pound average for the front loaders.
The comparative lightweight of a top loader is due to the positioning of the clothes drum. In the top loader, the drum is placed vertically, and in the front-loading machine, the drum is suspended horizontally within the casing.
The vertical drum is designed to hold more water to suspend the clothes while they are being washed. The extra weight of the water acts as a counterbalance for the forces that the clothes exert against the surface of the washing drum, thereby reducing the counterbalance load included in the casing.
The variation in the weight between the different brands of washing machines may also be due to their drum capacity. The drum capacity allows a certain amount of clothes to be washed at one time.
The larger the drum capacity of the machine, the heavier it is. Large capacity washers, the ones where you can load up to 15 pounds of dry washing at one time, weigh on average 155- 200 pounds.
Whereas the medium capacity ones (these take between 10 and 12 pounds of dry laundry) can be lighter with weights of 140- 180 pounds. Of course, the top-loading counterparts are even lighter, with the medium capacity top loaders averaging 135-150 pounds and the large capacity top loaders average at 150 -170 pounds.
Whether you choose a lighter machine or a heavier one will depend on your particular circumstances.
Getting a heavier machine may give you the convenience of a large load capacity and a more quiet running appliance which is great if you have a large family or if you want to place your laundry room upstairs, near the bedrooms of your home.
However, if you are planning to carry your new washing machine up to your third-floor apartment, you may want to consider a lighter model for easier handling and transport. Even if it means you need to sacrifice some washing capacity.