Every home has a washing machine, which is highly practical. However, washing machines can have a variety of programs, components, and functions.

Therefore, if you want a new washer, you might wonder what the best model for your needs and your house is. Considering all types of washing machines, you have probably stumbled upon those that state they include an agitator.

So, what is a washing machine with an agitator? Let me introduce you to this interesting invention.

what is a washing machine with an agitator
source: usatoday.com

What Is a Washing Machine With an Agitator?

Surprisingly enough, agitator machines are a pretty old-school mechanism; chances are you already owned one at a certain period of time. If you are younger, you might be familiar only with those that open in the front.

The original washers that open from the top came with a rotating spindle in the middle of the tub, called an “agitator”.

Its main function is to remove the stains and dirt from the clothes more efficiently and squeeze all the moisture so that later they will dry quicker in the dryer.

The agitator spreads an even amount of water and detergent when the washing machine is running to remove the laundry’s dirtiness and stains. 

It’s not a secret that this type of washer is starting to lose popularity regarding the front loader washers. However, at the end of the day, it all comes down to your personal preference and budget.

Generally, top loader agitator washers are more affordable than front loaders. Also, they are a convenient invention for older people suffering from back problems because they are more functional for loading and taking out laundry. Plus, they are easier to clean and maintain.

Agitator vs. No Agitator

Agitator washers are similar to what you get from a washboard as you’re rubbing clothes against it. The propeller inside grabs the clothes, twirls them, rubs them, and breaks down the soil to give you a good clean. 

On the other hand, the ‘impeller’ model, or no-agitator one, includes fins inside the drum and is based on getting the water to spin quickly. When it spins, it gets the water going back and forth, causing friction that cleans the clothes. 

Luckily for those who cannot decide which model to choose, the industry has invented a combination of a 2-in-1 agitator-impeller washer, allowing you to remove the spindle from the middle whenever you want to wash more delicate fabrics or add a bigger load. 

Now that you have a general idea of the washing machine with an agitator, let’s see what the differences are between them.

Also read: Can You Put Real Fur In The Washing Machine?

Damage delicate clothing

The agitator model can snag, snatch, pull, and tangle some of that delicate clothing. However, since they work at high speed, agitator washers leave the clothes almost dry so you can pull them out without much trouble.

On the other hand, the non-agitator model is much softer on your clothing and delicate fabrics.

Inconvenient in terms of power and water usage 

No agitator washer uses much less water and energy because it runs on delicate wash programs. Agitator washers require more water because of their more heavy-duty programs. 

Nevertheless, the benefit of the agitator washer is that as it’s spinning, it can rinse out more water making the drying time shorter.

More efficient in washing filthy clothes and removing stains

If you intend to wash filthy clothing, primarily if you work in a field or construction, it will be easier for the agitator model to remove the staining and leave your clothes perfectly clean.

Can’t fit large things, and the cycles last shorter

The agitator takes up space, so you can’t fit large things like bedspreads, which is why it’s only recommended for small loads. 

However, the positive side is that the cycle will last significantly shorter than the no-agitator one, typically less than an hour.

Requires more cleaning and maintenance 

It’s common for agitator washers to have an odor after a certain usage period. This happens because the detergent buildup on the spindle attracts mold and mildew, leaving your newly washed clothes smelling unpleasant.

To prevent this problem, you must regularly clean the agitator.


So, what is a washing machine with an agitator? After carefully reading the article, I hope you have learned everything about it. 

Now you know what a washing machine with an agitator is, and you can decide if you want one.