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10 Tips for buying a used washing machine

Updated on December 14, 2011

So...Would you buy a used washing machine?

10 Tips when buying a used washing machine - Without knowing the machines history, it can be hard to know if the washing machine is working correctly and has been looked after, although I am an appliance repair engineer so I understand people's machines break down and sometimes you just can't afford a new one. So here are 10 things you should do to reduce the risk of buying a bad washing machine.

All comments welcome also please take my poll at the bottom of the lens, I would love to see the results!

Let's get to it!

1. Manually spin the drum

Ensure the drum will manually spin; this will give you the opportunity to listen for any unusual noises and to see if the drum is loose, it shouldn't rock back and forth.

2. Full cycle

Once the machine is turned on, carry out a full cycle, this way you can ensure the washing machine is washing, spinning and rinsing properly, a faulty cycle timer is one of the main problems with a used washing machine.

3. Leaking water

Whilst the machine is on, you will also be able to see if the machine is leaking any water from either the door or the water tube connections.

4. Rust

Check for rust on the inside of the drum, this is usually caused by wet clothes being left in overnight or metal buttons/zips stripping the paint work. This can lead to rust getting on your clothes during each wash.

5. Brand

Brand and type of washing machine is a big sector so I won't cover it here although I will recommend checking the model reliability, you can do this on the Which? Website

6. Cold fill

Now day's washing machines are produced with cold fill as it is a lot more economical than hot fill and therefore is good for our environment and good for your pocket. A detailed view on cold fill can be seen here

7. Meets your requirements

Before you go ahead and buy the washing machine, make sure it suits your requirements:

What load size do I require?

What type of cycles do I need?

What spin speeds do I need?

Will this machine fit in my kitchen?

Can I afford this washing machine?

8. Buttons working

Ensure all the lights/buttons/knobs/switches are all working as expected, if some buttons are not working, you may be losing out on valuable features.

9. Efficiency Grading

The better the grading, the more efficient the washing machine is (in theory). Aim to go for a machine that has a good grading, these machines should generally come with more efficiency features such as unique wash cycles, time savers and many more.

10. Check for odd socks in the machine - Well they must end up somewhere!

Other expenses to think of:

You may need the washing machine delivered or you may have to collect

Disposal of old washing machine & Installing new washing machine

You may not have any guarantee so think about the appliance repair you may need

If it is an old machine, the efficiency may not be that good = more bills

Where to buy used washing machines from:





Would you buy a second hand washing machine?

See results

Here is a video by Homeserve, it is very good for beginners so most people should find this really useful when installing your own washing machine.

A little bit about our team

Here at 0800 Repair we are the specialists when is comes to appliance repairs in Birmingham. We have been repairing all domestic appliances including dishwashers, washing machines, cookers, and so much more. There will be many more lenses to come shortly, we will be covering safety which is a major issue as well as general maintenance and tips and tricks to save energy/money when purchasing a new appliance. thanks for reading.

Appliance Repairs Birmingham

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    • KatySweet profile image

      Katy Sweet 

      3 years ago from Manchester UK

      Thanks for this article --was thinking of getting a second hand washing machine.. but now having second thoughts! And yet I know that it is possible to buy a 'nearly new' for a fraction of the new cost. I suppose the best option is to buy second hand from a reputable dealer -- with some kind of warranty, even if its only for a few months.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      nice content

    • yayas profile image


      7 years ago

      Very useful information. Thank you.

      I'd also like to thank you for your support on my What Is A Balloon Christmas page an' wish you a very Happy New Year!

    • LouisaDembul profile image


      7 years ago

      I've never bought a used washing machine, but can see that the tips here are very good. There is a lot to consider.

    • A RovingReporter profile image

      A RovingReporter 

      7 years ago

      Great tips.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I have purchased used until the last washer and dryer, got new front loader high efficiency. I've had them for a couple years now, so they are now officially "used" :-) Great tips here!

    • BuildABetterMouse profile image

      Steve and Annette 

      7 years ago

      What great advice. We just bought a used washing machine this fall and probably should've known this stuff. Thank you.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I have to admit that I'm a person who likes to buy new things - not sure why but it's probably because you get some waranty in case something goes wrong. But on the other hand I remember that I bought used washing machine when I still lived in a private flat as a student. It was pretty cheap so I thought it will break sooner or later - but it didn't and I was very happy :)

    • flycatcherrr profile image


      7 years ago

      I don't think I would buy a used washing machine, not unless I knew its history. Too much there to go wrong!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      You certainly have all the bases covered for those looking to purchase a used washing machine and I like your step by step approach. These days, many people seem to want to upgrade to the new and more efficient models while the machines they currently have are working just fine and could be a great savings for someone. A very practical and unique topic!

    • TheZinc LM profile image

      TheZinc LM 

      7 years ago

      interesting choice of topic, you should write some more dude!

    • blessedmomto7 profile image


      7 years ago

      I don't think I'd buy a used one, but informative lens.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Very helpful, thanks for the tips.

    • youthministry profile image

      Paul Turner 

      7 years ago from Birmingham, Al.

      Super helpful.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Thanks for all these tips. They will be useful one day. Looking forward to more lenses.

    • SquidooMBA profile image


      7 years ago

      Great lens and a real cost saver as there are some great deals on used washers these days. My plumber here also recommended installing the stainless steel (i think) hoses rather than the rubber ones since the rubber ones blow out over time.

    • donaldwilson profile image

      Don Wilson 

      7 years ago from Yakima, WA

      You offer very good advice. I purchased a used Maytag washer and dryer set from an estate sale of someone I personally knew. I had a good idea of the history of the appliances, based on the characteristics of the previous owners. Had I followed all your tips, the appliances I purchased would have passed with flying colors. They have performed marvelously since we have owned them.

    • ApplianceRepairsB profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      @KimGiancaterino: I really appreciate the comments and the likes, thank you very much all of you! Plenty more to come when I find the time :D

    • KimGiancaterino profile image


      7 years ago

      My dad is an electrical engineer, so he always fixed our appliances. My parents are just now replacing the dryer they purchased when they bought their first house. It lasted many decades! I've not been so fortunate, thanks to design "improvements" and computer-driven washers and dryers. We maintain a service policy on our major appliances and are on a first-name basis with the Sears repair techs. Your tips are very helpful.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      nice lens there are lots of points here that i probally would have never thought of, my washing machine cost £151 which was the cheapest at the time (new) and after a year and a half we have still had no issues with this

    • skefflingecho profile image


      7 years ago from Tobermory Ontario

      Great Lens, I agree, write about all those thingsm for all the appliances, people want to save money and often appliances last longer. Our last washing machine cost $100, about 60 quid, after we had a 2 1/2 inch self tapping screw go through the spin cycle in a plastic drum....was going to cost $350 to replace the plastic drum on a 6 year old washer, so we bought the same model again (the lady got a brand new pair as an anniversary present). I hope to use some of the parts on the damaged one for a chicken plucker.

      I have Squid Angel blessed and thumbs upped. Look forward to reading more! And welcome to Squidoo! Do you know about researching your keywords? You will get lots more readers (and $) that way. There are some great lenses on being successful on Squidoo, looks like you are off to a great start!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Nice job. Would love to see more lenses along these lines on buying used refrigerators, mini-refrigerators for college dorms, microwaves, etc. We were looking at used appliances recently. Even with a warranty, this can be intimidating!

    • ApplianceRepairsB profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      @anonymous: Yeah, there's plenty more to come yet! Thanks for your comment :D

    • ApplianceRepairsB profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      @anonymous: Thanks, I appreciate that.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

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