Learn if a washer with or without an agitator is right for you.


The Difference Between Agitator Vs. Impeller Washers

Agitators and impellers are both found in top loading washing machines, but they clean in two different ways. So what’s the main difference between agitators vs. impellers?

Washing machines with agitators use a central post that twists back and forth, rubbing against clothes to help break apart stains. In contrast, washing machines with impellers use a low-profile cone or disc that spins/rotates to rub clothes against each other to get them clean.

View this side-by-side comparison to learn how washing machines with impellers stack up against washing machines with agitators.






Maytag washing machines with agitators.

Agitators are tall vertical spindles, vaned or finned, in the center of the washer. Washers with agitators are all about the motion in the wash basket; and, despite what you may have heard, advances in agitator technology ensure they’re not hard on clothes.


How Maytag washers with agitators clean.

They typically move in multiple ways for optimal cleaning, including.

Spraying Action

Soaks clothes with water recirculated from the wash/rinse cycle.

Wash Basket Action

Rotates for a hard-hitting clean. 

Agitator Action

Rubs against clothes to help break apart stains and loosen soils.


Maytag washing machines with impellers.

Don't let low water levels fool you: Washers with impellers use a small amount of water in order to optimize the friction of the clothes rubbing against each other. This is what helps deliver gentle, efficient and thorough cleaning.


How Maytag impeller washers clean.

They also typically clean with multiple wash motions, including:


Soaks clothes with water recirculated from the wash/rinse cycle. 

Wash Basket Action

Rotates for a hard-hitting clean. 

impeller action

 Uses low-profile cones, wheels, fins or discs that rotate to gently rub clothes against each other.


Washer with an Agitator

Washer with an Impeller
(Washer without an Agitator)

Agitator rubs against clothes to
remove and rinse away loose soils
Rubs clothes against each other to
deliver a thorough, gentle clean
Familiar functionality
More room in the basket for bulky articles
and easy loading/unloading

Efficient models are available on both agitator and impeller washers — just look to see if it’s ENERGY STAR® certified


You’ve got options when it comes to the wash action and cleaning power of these two top load designs. Whether you want an agitator or an impeller washer, Maytag brings hardworking models to tackle any load.


Recommended Agitator Washer

Move mountains of laundry with the largect capacity agitator washer available at 6.0 cu. ft.1

View Model



Recommended Impeller Washer

This extra-large capacity washer features the Deep Water Wash cycle that adds more water for heavily soiled loads and works with the Power™ impeller to attack everday tough stains.

View Model



Find Your Next Washer


Find the Best Maytag® Washing Machine for You

See what Maytag has to offer and zero in on the right washer for you.

Front Load vs. Top Load Washers

Learn about the differences between front and top load washers to help narrow your search.

Why Do Some Washing Machines Require HE Detergent?

Discover what HE washers are and the benefits of washing with one.




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1) Model MVWB865G.