Belt Drive or Direct Drive Washing Machine: Which Is Better?

Eli Smith
by Eli Smith
Washing machines vary in style, design, price, and method of operation with belt drive and direct drive units being the main varieties. They are similar in function, but direct drive washing machines are harder to maintain than belt drive units. Whether it be function or maintenance, follow along as we compare direct drive and belt drive washing machines.

When it comes to washing machines, a common question asked is are direct drive or belt drive washing machines better. In this review, we will be putting this question to rest. Should you get a belt drive or direct drive washing machine?

It’s best to stick with a washing machine that has a belt drive motor instead of a direct-drive motor. This is because the direct drive motor is a very recent technology and requires the assistance of a professional who is trained to handle a direct drive motor, which can be tricky to find.

Below, we will get into some reasons that you could have to buy a direct drive when compared to a belt drive motor. We will also dig into some other washing machine terms that will help you make a purchase.

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What Makes A Belt Drive Washing Machine Great?

A belt drive washing machine has a motor that is driven by a belt. As a result, these machines are incredibly simple and better for those who like to handle their repairs.

Belt drive technology came with the production of early washing machines. As a result, standard technicians are all trained on these models, which will reduce the cost of technicians. Belt drive machines also have less expensive parts, as they have been in production for much longer. As a result of less expensive parts, they also have a significant reduction in other costs.

On the other hand, belts tend to break every so often, meaning that you tend to perform more repairs. Also, they do not have as much longevity as direct drive motors.

They also don’t tend to have as many features as direct drive motors. Given that direct-drive engines are the newest technology, they tend to have more features.

What Makes A Direct Drive Washing Machine Great?

Direct drive washers are the epitome of washer technology. Because of this, companies that produce this appliance are putting most of their attention in making these direct drive washing machines usable by all families.

Direct drive washing machines do not have any moving parts in the motor. Because of this, there is far less wear and tear when compared to belt drive motors. With their extreme longevity, direct-drive motors go longer without a repair. However, broken parts will require a technician with training, which can be challenging to find.

A combination of special training and newer technology also increases the cost of repairs. Because of this, you will have to set aside a larger portion of your budget, limiting their usefulness to families with more money.

In a few years, it will be easy to see how direct drive washing machines will eventually overtake the competition. Below, we will get into a couple of examples of solid belt drive and direct drive washers.

Three Belt Drive Washers You Should Consider

  • Insignia 4.1 cu ft 11-Cycle Top-Loading Washer
  • Whirlpool 3.5 cu ft High-Efficiency Top-Load Washer
  • Kenmore 3.5 cu ft Top-Load Washer w/Porcelain Basket

Insignia 4.1 cu ft 11-Cycle Top-Loading Washer

The Insignia 4.1 cu ft Top-Loading Washer was selected because it does have a good deal of options despite being a belt-driven washer. It is also a product unique to Best Buy, so it’s one of the most cost-effective washers you can get.

You may notice it has an agitator, which is an inexpensive way of including something that disturbs your clothes. It should increase cleaning, but can also be hard on thinner sheets.

Whirlpool 3.5 cu ft High-Efficiency Top-Load Washer

Whirlpool is one of the best-known companies in existence. They are also known to produce incredibly simple products, which include belt drive washers. It is known to have high ratings, and you can typically pick up this washer at Lowes.

Kenmore 3.5 cu ft Top-Load Washer w/Porcelain Basket

Kenmore is another well-known creator of inexpensive washers. As some reviews have stated, it doesn’t have many features, but it works at what it needs to do.

The agitator inside is dual-action, meaning that it can spin both ways. It allows you to untangle your clothing should it get wrapped up, which is a typical issue with agitators.

Three Direct Drive Washers You Should Consider

A standard feature of these direct drive washers is a front-loaded capacity. Typically this is because front-loaded washers are more water-efficient

Samsung 4.2 Cu Ft 8-Cycle High-Efficiency Front-Loading Washer

Samsung may be better known for its phones, but they are also known for premium technology. One of these is vibration reduction, which makes this one of the least noisy options available. It is easy to be overwhelmed by the extra features, but the price tag reflects it. It is a good option for those seeking a premium washer.

LG 4.5 Cu Ft 14-Cycle Front-Loading Washer with Steam

Its title indicates a steaming feature that removes stains from clothing with greater efficiency. It is also another electronics company that is better known for its phone selection. Regardless of what they are known for, they put out an excellent option.

300 Series 24 in 2.2 Cu Ft 240-Volt White High-Efficiency Front-Load Compact Washer

Bosch creates washers that are best known for being powerful and energy-efficient. It is the only brand of the washer on this list that isn’t associated with cell phones. This washer is also energy star qualified, which makes it one of the best washers to put in your phone for saving money.

Pros And Cons Of Belt And Direct Washing Machines

Belt washing machines are inexpensive and easy to repair. Finding a technician is more accessible, and DIY repairs are also just as simple.

They are also far more approachable when making an upfront investment.

Direct drive washing machines have much more extended longevity and more features than your standard washer. When a repair occurs, finding a qualified technician can be somewhat more complicated. Also, the repairs behind this may be less frequent, but they are also far more expensive.

Choose belt-driven washing machines for accessibility and being inexpensive. Choose directly driven washing machines for longevity and additional features.

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Additional Questions

What Is The Difference Between An Inverter Motor And Direct Drive?

While direct drive motors connect on the back drum of your washer, inverter systems are between incoming power and outgoing power. The result is a higher amount of control with inverter motors.

The drawback with additional features means that you should expect to spend extra money should something occur. As long as everything is working, inverter motors can be incredibly energy efficient.

What Is The Difference Between Top Loading And Front Loading Washing Machines?

Front loading washing is those who receive their load from the front. As a result, these washers tend to use less water and do not use agitators to clean your clothes. As a result, front-loaded washing machines are better at cleaning delicates.

Top loading washing machines are typically more effective at handling tough stains. However, they use more water in the process and tend to be a bit rougher on clothes. Top loading washing machines typically have an agitator. The agitator helps the water to rotate faster, but will occasionally have larger objects caught in them.

While the more versatile of the two is the front-loaded washing machine, the top-loading machine is better at cleaning tough stains. Each of them has its advantages and disadvantages.

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Eli Smith
Eli Smith

I'm a guy who becomes the expert of whatever I stumble upon, writing-wise. I've written tons about cool home products, home improvement, and smart technology in the home. I'm also the proud father of a kiddo born on new years, making my holidays very busy.

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