Overhead shot of large capacity Maytag® washing machine with glass lid

What Size Washer do I Need?

When it comes to washing machines, there’s no such thing as “one size fits all.” Choosing the best size washer for you depends on a number of things like the space you have in your home for a laundry pair, family size, and how frequently you do laundry. As you’re searching for a washer, keep in mind that it’s important to have enough capacity to allow clothes to move freely through the water and detergent for the best cleaning results.

Before you buy a new washing machine, do a little research so you know which capacity fits your home and lifestyle best.

Woman’s hand dropping clothing into Maytag® washing machine

What size washers are available?

You can find a range of capacities in front load models as well as top-load impeller and agitator models. Capacity is measured in cubic feet. Here is a snapshot of approximately how much laundry different capacities can hold—note that these averages can vary based on the design of the washer model:

Maytag® top load washing machine in White

Small capacity washing machine

  • 3.5 cubic feet–4.4 cubic feet

  • Holds approximately 9–15 full size bath towels

Maytag® front load washing machine in White

Medium capacity washing machine

  • 4.5 cubic feet–4.9 cubic feet

  • Holds approximately 11–19 full size bath towels

Maytag® front load washing machine in Metallic Slate

Large capacity washing machine

  • Holds approximately 12–21 full size bath towels

Do you move mountains of laundry? Consider exploring our guide to large capacity dryers to complete your set.

Overhead shot of Maytag® impeller washing machine in action

How do I choose the right washer capacity for my home?

There are five simple questions you need to ask yourself before making your next washer purchase:

1. What is your average load size?

Decide whether your average laundry load is approximately the size of 9, 11 or 17 bath towels.

2. How frequently do you do laundry? 

A larger capacity can help you do more laundry in fewer days.

3. How big is your laundry area?

Large capacity washing machines may be bigger than the average washer size. Be sure to account for additional room before purchasing. Learn how to measure your space with this washer and dryer size guide.

4. Will you be washing large items?

You will likely need a washer with at least 4.6 cu. ft. of capacity to wash items as large as a king-size comforter. Be sure to check your owner's manual to confirm whether the manufacturer recommends washing a comforter in your particular model. For your largest loads, see the Maytag® washer with 5.3 cu. ft. capacity.

5. How big is your household?

Consider whether or not you will be adding new family members or if any family members will be leaving home, as this could impact your decision.

Top-load, glass lid Maytag® washer and dryer in laundry room

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