2 August 2013 by Shantha Kumari
In this day of space and time constraints, Portable Washing Machines are a big help to those who live in apartments/trailers and are either single, college students or seniors. They are compact in design, easy for storage, have wheels for mobility, lightweight and have adjustable legs for providing stability. These units work by hooking it up to your tap faucet using the faucet adapter and the outlet drain to your sink. After completing your laundry you can store the washing machine away.
The loading capacity of portable/compact washing units is comparatively less than that of a conventional washer ie around 1- 2 cu.ft but you can buy ones with larger capacities of about 3 cu ft. also. You can use it for small loads which in turn requires less water, energy and time.
Based on the washing system used in the units, there are 2 types. Although both these washing systems produce the same result, the movement of clothes during the washing process inside the wash basket is different.
1. Pulsator Washing system: Disc like devices called Pulsators are provided along the adjacent or bottom wall of the wash basket. During washing when these pulsators operate, it helps in the movement of clothes in a clockwise direction, thus washing the clothes. The main advantage of buying a Portable Washing machines with pulsator washing system is that they are better for washing and are energy efficient since more clothes can be washed, thus saving on electricity and water bills. But these type of washing machines come at a higher price.
2. Agitator Washing System: A projection called Agitator is present from the bottom of the wash basket up to the rim of the basket. When the washing machine is started, the clothes movement is in an anti clockwise direction to give a hand-wash like experience and so helps in cleaning the clothes. The drawback of using machines with agitator system is that the clothes are pulled or stretched when they are subjected to washing. The laundry capacity is also less because of the extra space occupied by the agitator projection present inside the tub.
If you just have small loads and are space constraint, then you could opt for the mini/countertop portable types which have very limited loading capacity of about 1 cu.ft and are the smaller versions of the standard compact washing machines. It's also price saving. However, the most selling version which has both the above feature is the standard sized portable top loading variant.
The best portable and compact washing machines are listed below and are the ones rated best by expert reviewers from around the web.