Quietest washing machine 2019: low decibel machines for open-plan spaces and flats

The best quiet washing machines will make you realise how much noise the average washing machine makes. And if you're buying one for a small flat or an open-plan scheme, it's a vital buy to get right. Here's our top pick

Best quiet washing machine: INDESIT INNEX BWE 101684X W FREESTANDING WASHING MACHINE
(Image credit: Indesit)

Looking for a quiet washing machine? Whether you live in a small flat and are tired of encountering sleepless nights (or disgruntled neighbours) thanks to a noisy machine, or are looking for a quieter replacement in an open-plan space, our pick of the best low decibel washing machines were designed with you in mind.

Often, when it comes to buying a washing machine, we tend to overlook the importance of quietness, focusing instead on the programmes available, the capacity, the energy rating and so on, which can lead to dissatisfaction further down the line. 

All these appliances will display their noise level for both washing and spinning in decibels (dB) so the lower it is, the quieter it will be. Our quietest is just 43dB in the washing cycle, but don't forget it is the spin that is really loud and our loudest spin is just 80dB – quieter than most vacuum cleaners. Other features to look for include anti-vibration, inverter motors and EcoSilence, which all help to reduce noise.

If you want to see more of what is on offer, browse our best washing machine buyer's guide. Or you might want to take a look at our pick of the best washing machine deals, too.

What is the best quiet washing machine?

When it come to choosing a quiet washing machine, our top recommendation is the AEG L8FEC946R Freestanding Washing Machine, which is perfect if you're looking for something with loads of features to take the effort out of doing your laundry.

It might be at the pricier end, but this is because the manufacturers really have thought of everything to cut the time you spend washing your clothes. ÖKOMix technology cleans your clothes effectively on shorter cycles by dissolving and mixing the detergent before it enters the drum. Anti-crease and ProSteam® settings reduce the need for ironing – or at least make ironing a quicker task. And the best part is this machine is very efficient so while it might not be cheap to buy, it is very affordable to run. Read more about it – and our other top picks – below.

Want to compare all your options before committing to buying? Browse more of our handy washing machine (and tumble dryer) buying guides:

How to buy the best quiet washing machine

Shopping for a washing machine, and more specifically a quiet washing machine, can be something of a minefield. We'd recommend bearing the following features in mind during the course of your search:

Low decibel washing machines

Quiet washing machines will display their noise level for both washing and spinning in decibels (dB) so the lower it is, the quieter it will be. As a guide, a decibel level in the 40s is low. Other features to look for include anti-vibration, inverter motors and EcoSilence, which all help to reduce noise.

Special wash cycles

While finding a quiet washing machine might be your priority, you'll want to ensure the washing machine you choose fulfils all the other basic functions, too. Think carefully about the type of laundry you do on a regular basis, as some washing machines come complete with programmes designed to tackle pet hair, tough stains on sportswear, work gear and school uniforms.

Eco ratings

If you're looking for a low energy option, ensure that any models you're considering come complete with a good energy rating and reasonable water consumption levels.

Smart washing machine features

Some washing machine – quiet or otherwise – have smart features as part of the package, including the ability to be controlled by you, from your smartphone. They're typically a little more expensive than non-smart washing machines, but over time, we suspect this will change. Time for you to go smart? Check out our guide to find out what a smart washing machine is, and whether you need one.

So, with these factors in mind, browse our pick of the best quiet washing machines to find the best solution for you...

The best quiet washing machines you can buy right now

AEG L8FEC946R Freestanding Washing Machine

(Image credit: John Lewis)

1. AEG L8FEC946R Freestanding Washing Machine

Best quiet washing machine

Specifications
Capacity: 9kg
Noise level: 47dB washing / 73dB spinning
Energy rating: A+++
Spin speed: 1400rpm
Finish: White
Dimensions: H85cm x W60cm x D63.5cm
Reasons to buy
+Steam refresh+Anti-allergy+20-minute programme
Reasons to avoid
-Quite pricey-Choosing the best programme options can be hard as there are so many-Touch sensitive controls need a push with wet hands

Awarded the Quiet Mark, the AEG L8FEC946R low decibel rated washing machine could be the option you're looking for if you live in a small apartment and want to minimise disturbance to your neighbours, or are tired of your washing machine overpowering conversation in an open plan scheme.

Time efficient

A big reason for the popularity of this washing machine model is its use of ÖKOMix technology, which ensures that fabric is cleaned and cared for in shorter cycles by ensuring that detergent, fabric softener and water are dissolved and activated before entering the drum.

Anti-crease technology

The AEG L8FEC946R keeps your clothes looking their best for as long as possible with the help of AEG’s ProSense technology, which automatically weighs each load to provide a tailored cycle. Sensors are used to adjust washing times precisely, ensuring optimum treatment for every garment. Your laundry comes out with that fresh, new feeling every time while saving you water and energy.

Protects your loads

This machine features a ProTex gentle drum, designed to take care of your clothes. The drum reduces the stretching of fabric, maintaining the shape and texture of clothes during spin cycles. SoftPlus makes sure that softener reaches every part of the fabric when it enters the drum, it helps your clothes feel softer, silkier, and smoother while protecting fibres and prolonging the life of your clothes.

Energy efficient

On top of all this, the AEG L8FEC946R freestanding Washing Machine boasts a good energy rating, large capacity for bigger loads and anti-crease ProSteam® technology, which can add steam at the end of a wash cycle if you want it, reducing the need for ironing.

Browse the full range of washing machines available from Appliances Direct

INDESIT INNEX BWE 101684X W FREESTANDING WASHING MACHINE

(Image credit: indesit)

2. INDESIT INNEX BWE 101684X W FREESTANDING WASHING MACHINE

The best budget quiet washing machine: with a handy digital display for ease of use

Specifications
Capacity: 10kg
Noise level: 56dB washing / 78dB spinning
Energy rating: A+++
Spin speed: 1600rpm
Finish: White
Dimensions: H85cm x W59.5cm x D60.5cm
Reasons to buy
+Large drum for bigger loads+Dedicated programmes+Great stain removal
Reasons to avoid
-Doesn’t look very high-tech-Some of the cycles are too long

Our pick of the best quiet washing machine is the Indesit 101684X W. It definitely lives up to its high-speed spin, leaving your clothes drier than most other machines. Plus the large maximum load capacity (10kg) makes it ideal for big families 

Easy and quick to use

For when you want something that’s easy to use... this model features a clever Push & Wash function, which starts the wash cycle with just one push of the button and without having to faff around with adjusting the settings. If you've always got limited time on your hands, you'll love the ‘one touch’ operation. We really like the Water Balance Plus technology, too, which adapts the amount of water used according to what’s required – it's a simple eco feature that's effortless for the user.

Fast spin speed

The maximum spin speed of 1,600rpm is among the fastest in our pick of the best quiet washing machines. It manages to remove more than half of the water from your clothes by the end of the wash cycle, so they'll be much quicker to dry. The rinse cycle at the end of the wash is also really effective – great if you have particularly sensitive skin. 

Plenty of wash programmes

There are 14 programmes that include all the standard cycles you would expect, plus a few handy extras. There are special wash cycles for denims, sportswear and there's even one for trainers. This model will be a little tougher with the more hardwearing materials, so your shoes are safe and will come out looking as good as new.

Shop more quiet washing machines at John Lewis & Partners

Best quiet washing machines: HOOVER AXI AWMPD69LH7 FREESTANDING WASHING MACHINE

(Image credit: Hoover)

3. HOOVER AXI AWMPD69LH7 FREESTANDING WASHING MACHINE

Best smart quiet washing machine: an artificially intelligent machine

Specifications
Capacity: 9kg
Noise level: 51dB washing / 80dB spinning
Energy rating: A+++
Spin speed: 1600rpm
Finish: Graphite
Dimensions: H85cm x W60cm x D54cm
Reasons to buy
+Auto dose technology+Washes whites and colours together+Steam option to reduce need for ironing
Reasons to avoid
-May be too high tech for some

The Hoover AXI AWMPD69LH7 is as smart as washing machines get. It's compatible with smart home assistance like Google Home and Amazon Alexa plus it can understand your voice, give you personalised tips and customise your wash programs. 

Voice assisted 

As mentioned, this model features voice assist, which allows you to choose or set the wash programme, ask for suggestions about the best programme to use as well as ask for stain removal advice. 

Smart functions

AXI can advise on the best time to do the laundry based on the weather forecast and it also remembers your favourite programmes as well as giving info on energy usage and how to reduce consumption. This really is the washing machine of the future!

Self-measures detergent 

One of the really useful features is the automatic self-dosing 'Care Dose' system, designed to save you time and waste by accurately measuring the precise amount of liquid detergent needed for your chosen cycle. Simply add the bottle of detergent to the special compartment and the machine takes care of the rest. Lasts up to 21 loads.

Plenty of quick settings

Featuring four cycles taking below an hour. The All in One 59 minute cycle allows you to wash a full load. You have the option to use Delay Start/Variable Spin/Variable Temperature, and also a Steam Function allowing you to refresh clothes that have been sat in the drum for a long time, or use it to help remove creases from your clothes.

Shop more quiet washing machines available from Amazon

Best quiet washing machines: BOSCH SERIE 8 WAW32560 AUTOMATIC FREESTANDING WASHING

(Image credit: Bosch)

4. BOSCH SERIE 8 WAW32560 AUTOMATIC FREESTANDING WASHING

Best quiet washing machine for reduced vibration

Specifications
Capacity: 9kg
Noise level: 47dB washing / 73dB spinning
Energy rating: A+++
Spin speed: 1556rpm
Finish: White
Dimensions: H84.8cm x W59.8cm x D59cm
Reasons to buy
+EcoPerfect programmes+Quick 15 minute wash+Stain removal
Reasons to avoid
-High price tag-No choice of finishes

The Bosch Serie 8 WAW32560 has made it into our round up of the best quiet washing machines thanks to its  EcoSilence Drive™ plus the AntiVibration design absorbs sound to keep noise levels even lower.

Saves on water + energy efficient 

VarioPerfect technology gives you the option to speed up your wash by 65 per cent or to cut down your energy consumption by 50 per cent to keep costs down. ActiveWater technology ensures only the necessary amount of water is used and none is wasted. A consumption indication lets you easily keep tabs on how much energy your machine is using.

Plenty of programmes

With 14 programmes to choose from, you'll definitely be able to find a setting that is suitable for the load. There are delicate programmes for silk and woollens, and even a duvet programme which makes good use of the generous 9kg capacity. If you're in a rush, you can use the handy Super Quick 15 programme which can wash up to 2kg of clothing in just 15 minutes. The AutoStain feature removes some of the most common stubborn stains without the need for stain removers.

Reload function 

Buyers also rave about the Reload function, which means you can add or remove an item of clothing by simply stopping the running cycle and opening the door before carrying on with the wash –  handy if you’ve dropped a sock on the stairs on the way to the machine.

Browse the full range of washing machines available from AO

Best quiet washing machines: WHIRLPOOL SUPREME CARE FSCR 10432 WASHING MACHINE

(Image credit: Whirlpool)

5. WHIRLPOOL SUPREME CARE FSCR 10432 WASHING MACHINE

Best quiet washing machine for allergy sufferers: Quiet Mark approved for super-quiet operation

Specifications
Capacity: 10kg
Noise level: 48dB washing / 68dB spinning
Energy rating: A+++
Spin speed: 1400rpm
Finish: White
Dimensions: H85cm x W59.5cm x D64cm
Reasons to buy
+PrecisionClean technology for allergy sufferers+Interior drum light+Large capacity
Reasons to avoid
-Lower spin than other models

A great option for open-plan kitchens, as the Whirlpool Supreme care FSCR 10432  has a super-silent spin cycle thanks to its ZEN Technology™, which combines a new induction motor with improved design that minimises vibration.

Quiet Mark approved

This Whirlpool Washing Machine features advanced noise insulation design, so you can enjoy both ideal results and some extra peace and quiet. Plus the innovative ZENTechnology replaces the traditional belt drive with a high-performance traction motor that directly rotates the drum. This means less vibration, lower spin speed, and more peace and quiet.

Energy efficient + saves water

Thanks to the innovative Sixth Sense technology intelligent sensors adapt resources according to the size and type of load, offering savings of up to 50 per cent on energy, water and time.

Generous capacity 

For such an efficient machine, it has a very generous 10kg capacity plus tumbles laundry for up to 6 hours after the cycle has ended, keeping everything fresh so nothing sits wet in the drum.

Find more quiet washing machines available from Very

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