Regularly doing laundry is a big part of being an involved, contributing member of society. You can only wear dirty, stained, and sweaty clothes for so long before people start to take notice, take offense, and then become concerned about your health—and possibly their own. So, when the washer or dryer breaks down (or you’re just ready to upgrade), it’s important to be able to replace them quickly and reliably.
However, not every big-box store carries washers and dryers, and those that do may not have high-quality options. Instead of defaulting to the first available set you find, take some time to check these common retailers to find the best place to buy a washer and dryer.
Known for: A favorite of professionals, The Home Depot offers a large variety of appliances in a range of sizes, brands, and prices, making it easy to find the right washer and dryer set.
Editors’ Choice: Despite the large capacity, this GE washer and dryer (available at The Home Depot) features an all-in-one design that takes up minimal floor space with easy-to-see cycle lights indicating a load’s cleaning progress.
Co-founded in 1978, The Home Depot was started with the goal of creating home improvement superstores that were bigger than anything the competitors had to offer. Over 40 years later, it’s clear the company succeeded, with many professionals preferring to head to The Home Depot in their area rather than trying to find what they need at Lowe’s or another smaller supplier.
While The Home Depot provides an exceptional range of appliances, including dishwashers, washer and dryer sets, refrigerators, and more, the main benefit may be the expertise of its staff. The Home Depot tends to employ retired individuals who have spent their lives amassing information on tools, projects, and appliances, and they are eager to share this knowledge with customers who have questions about building a shed, choosing a washer and dryer set, and many other amateur DIYer concerns.
Known for: Lowe’s provides consumers with a broad sampling of popular and obscure washer and dryer sets, offering haul-away and removal services at the time of delivery.
Editors’ Choice: The durable Whirlpool washer and dryer stack (available at Lowe’s) is a great option for apartments or condos, with a 1.6-cubic-foot washer capacity and a 3.4-cubic-foot dryer capacity.
While Lowe’s has a business model similar to The Home Depot, the company got its start in the appliance retail business way back in 1921, long before The Home Depot was founded in 1978. The retailer doesn’t specialize in a certain niche, instead choosing to produce a wide range of tools, outdoor furniture, appliances, and more.
Lowe’s offers high-end appliances, budget appliances, and everything in between with client services to help determine the best product to suit the user’s needs and price point. Expect to have several different types, sizes, and finishes from which to choose when looking for a washer and dryer set at Lowe’s. This variability makes it easier to find a set with all the essential features instead of settling for one of the few products available at smaller retailers.
Known for: If the goal is to find a washer and dryer pair with high-tech features like Wi-Fi connectivity, smart-home integration, and mobile alerts, then Best Buy is the best bet.
Editors’ Choice: This LG washer and dryer set (available at Best Buy) boasts built-in AI technology that first detects the fabric texture and load size to choose the right settings to wash the clothes and then automatically communicates the best option for a compatible drying cycle.
The popular electronics and appliance retailer Best Buy was originally established in 1966 as an audio specialty store called Sound of Music. Renamed Best Buy in 1983, the company quickly made significant strides in the electronic retail industry, where the focus became providing consumers with a one-stop shopping experience for computers, phones, tablets, televisions, and high-quality appliances through brands featuring cutting-edge technology.
With this goal in mind, it can be difficult to find an inexpensive washer and dryer set at Best Buy since the company tends to carry products loaded with high-tech features, like smart-home compatibility, mobile alerts, and even wireless communication between appliances. However, these innovative features make it much easier to wash and dry a load of laundry despite the higher price tags, so if convenience outweighs cost, Best Buy is hard to beat.
Known for: The online retailer Wayfair provides customers with a convenient way to find, select, and purchase a washer and dryer set from the convenience of their computer.
Editors’ Choice: This Samsung washer and dryer set (available at Wayfair) features a top-load washer with a 5-cubic-foot capacity and a front-load dryer with a 7.4 cubic foot capacity that users can bundle with installation and haul-away service available through Wayfair.
Beginning in 2002 as a two-person company that sold media stands and storage furniture, Wayfair has greatly expanded the number of employees and the variety of product offerings in its online store. Wayfair is easy to use, taking some of the hassles out of purchasing new appliances, including arranging for delivery.
The main benefit of Wayfair is that consumers can bypass driving to a crowded store to find a washer and dryer set with all the features they want. Instead, they can simply take a seat at the computer or pull out their phone to instantly check the price, features, and technical specifications of a host of products.
Known for: Consumers only need a membership to score great deals on washer and dryer sets at Costco.
Editors’ Choice: Equipped with 11 wash cycles and 11 dryer cycles, this Maytag washer and dryer set (available at Costco) is a good choice for existing Costco members because they can enjoy the discounted price without having to sign up for anything new.
Costco Wholesale Corporation is the full title of this American multinational corporation with a somewhat unique requirement for shopping at its stores: A paid membership. An annual membership fee lets Costco members shop at the wholesale store and gain the benefit of bargain-price products throughout the brick-and-mortar locations and its website.
Costco was established in 1976 with the new concept of a retail warehouse club that offers large wholesale quantities at low prices since it doesn’t need to invest in shiny floors and attractive shelving. Despite the stark interior, Costco products, including its washer and dryer sets, are typically high-quality options that have helped to push the company to become the fifth-largest retailer in the world.
Known for: While the name may not be as immediately recognizable as other retailers, AJ Madison is an excellent online option to find washer and dryer sets, especially given the free nationwide delivery (excluding Alaska and Hawaii).
Editors’ Choice: Save some floor space with this vertically stacked LG WashTower washer and dryer set (available at AJ Madison) that users can access on a mobile device to stop, start, and check on cycles via the LG ThinQ app.
Founded in 2001 and based in Brooklyn, New York, AJ Madison is quickly growing its popularity and reputation as a reliable online appliance retailer. The company particularly appeals to consumers who prefer to research and buy appliances and other products online instead of traveling to brick-and-mortar businesses. To help improve its visibility among the big-box stores like The Home Depot and Lowe’s, AJ Madison also offers free shipping within the continental United States.
The modest variety of washer and dryer sets on the AJ Madison website provides consumers with enough variety to make a decision without overloading them with options to the point of confusion. The company also offers a range of services upon delivery, including unpacking, installation, and debris removal to help make purchasing a washer and dryer set as easy as possible.
Known for: Abt has been in business for nearly a century, remaining an independent retailer and finding moderate success among the big-box stores due to the quality of its appliances.
Editors’ Choice: The sleek black glass of this front-load Whirlpool washer and dryer set (available at Abt) looks stylish in any home, while the digital controls make it easier to choose wash and dry cycles and see exactly how much time remains on the current cycle.
This popular independent appliance retailer was first founded in 1936 with a small, three-person store in Chicago. While Abt still only has one store, now located in Glenview, Illinois, this single location has expanded significantly to a 100,000-square-foot showroom and its own mini-mall, including custom high-end boutique shops and a 7,500-gallon saltwater aquarium primarily used to show off its impressive selection of cameras.
This huge location allows Abt to hold a surplus of stock to supply consumers through its website, but those who prefer brick-and-mortar stores can check out the available washer and dryer sets in the showroom, where experienced professionals answer questions about the product’s appearance, size, or technical specs.
Known for: This gigantic online retailer carries everything from bags of dirt to high-tech computers, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that Amazon also has a decent selection of washers and dryers, ranging from compact apartment-size units to full-size appliances.
Editors’ Choice: The Electrolux washer and dryer in this set (available at Amazon) are both front-load options with a 4.4-cubic-foot capacity, making them an ideal choice for small- to medium-size families.
The online retailer Amazon began in 1994 as Cadabra, Inc. but quickly changed its name when the original name was mistaken for the word “cadaver.” The company specialized in selling books online and rapidly grew in popularity and product offerings over the years until it evolved into a multifaceted online publisher, video streaming service, and shipping company, all while remaining a successful retailer for an impressive variety of products from groceries to appliances.
Due to Amazon’s widespread notoriety and popularity, many manufacturers and smaller retailers use the online space to sell their products, so consumers can find washer and dryer sets, stacked washer and dryer towers, and innovative washer and dryer combos that can both wash and dry clothes. However, be aware that delivery and product quality vary between the smaller retailers and the manufacturers.
Known for: A classic brand in the world of high-end appliance retailers, Sears has been selling appliances for over a century, offering product expertise and a modest selection of washer and dryer sets.
Editors’ Choice: Simple and inexpensive, this Kenmore washer and dryer set (available at Sears) cleans with nine spray jets to help remove stains and uses a SmartDry feature to ensure clothing is dry before ending the cycle.
Sears got its start over a century ago in 1892 as a mail order catalog company that shipped products to fulfill mail-in orders. Sears climbed to the top of the retail appliance business in the U.S. and remained there throughout the 1980s, but the company began to decline after several investment mistakes, fighting to avoid bankruptcy in 2018. The appliance retailer succeeded in saving itself and continues to supply quality appliances to its customers.
While Sears doesn’t typically stock many washer and dryer sets with premium features like W-iFi connectivity or a high-end aesthetic appearance, it does offer standard, functional products that get the job done at an affordable price. However, the relative decline of this retailer compared to competitors has limited the wide availability of appliances and other products.
Known for: A large number of diverse and inexpensive products makes Walmart one of the most popular retail stores nationwide, with many affordable washer and dryer sets from which to choose.
Editors’ Choice: This stacked Frigidaire washer and dryer (available at Walmart) is an excellent option for apartments, condos, and small homes where every inch of space is important.
As of 2020, Walmart was the world’s largest company based on revenue, which it owes to the widespread popularity of its discount department stores and grocery stores in America. While the retailer was founded in 1945, the first official store didn’t open until 1962 with the goal of selling products at low prices to generate high-volume sales. By finding lower-cost suppliers, Walmart was able to undercut competitors and has continued to gain ground ever since, significantly expanding product offerings from groceries, kitchenware, and furniture to electronics, video games, appliances, and more.
Walmart continues to offer products at a lower price than competitors, making it a popular choice for consumers on a budget. Washer and dryer sets available at Walmart are typically affordable and of decent quality. However, the range of options is limited, so consumers may have difficulty finding products with specific high-tech features that are available at Best Buy or The Home Depot.