I am moving to a new home and looking for a washer and dryer set.
which one is recommended? front loading or top loading? also which brand do you guys recommend?
Top load vs front load is a personal preference. Both do a good job, with top load using more water, but fast washes and the ability to soak or add that missing sock after starting the cycle (provided no lid lock present). Persons in drought sensitive areas or where water is expensive generally go with a front load washer although some opt for the longer cycle HE top loaders.
This forum has a lot of positive reviews for Speed Queen top loads and Miele front loaders. Favorable reviews also for LG and Samsung, depending on the model and year of model. Some disaster stories pretty much for every brand, and appliance customer service has sunk to new lows in many parts of the industry.
And of course Whirlpool Corporation makes about 3 out of 4 washers sold in the US after their acquisition of Maytag brand a few years back. They must be doing something right for that kind of market share.
Hopefully a few will chime in.
I made this decision 4 years ago and first wrestled with the top- vs. front-loader question. After much research and analysis I rejected the front-loader type due to several factors. What I didn't want included 1) not being able to add more items after the start of a cycle, 2) "smelly washer" syndrome, 3) having to clean the gasket plus leave the door open after using the washer, and 4) having to pay extra for pedestals, then not being able to use the top surface as a folding area.
After deciding on a top loader I chose an HE model without an agitator, again for two reasons. #1 being able to do larger loads, especially blankets or comforters; #2 having an onboard heater - most TOL HE washers have this feature.
Washer/dryer pairs I considered were Whirlpool Affinity (before rejecting front-loader style), the LGs, Samsung, Whirlpool Cabrio, and Sears Kenmore equivalents. After months of reading and looking at washers I bought the TOL Maytag Bravos with onboard heater and a matching dryer with the steam feature.
I don't use the steam feature much, if I need to dampen a load I use a plain water spray bottle. Getting a less expensive dryer is one way to cut the cost of a new set. I suggest the TOL washer and the lowest-cost dryer that has the features you want/need.
I've posted a number of times on this forum about my washer, several others also have commented on the Bravos (a search will bring up many threads). After almost four years I remain happy with my Bravos, but have had to have the dryer main circuit board replaced once. The dryer has disappointed me, currently the auto-dry feature doesn't work and timed cycles cut off before items are dry. I need to get service out here to replace the circuit board again, but I live 100 miles from the repair shop and scheduling service isn't easy.
I would advise all consumers to opt for a longterm service contract, especially on washers and dryers. They just "don't make 'em like they used to." I've kept my Ws/Ds under service contract for the last 14 years and feel it's money well spent.
Speed Queen conventional top-loaders are frequently recommended on this and another washer forum. Used SQs are a good buy and when my son and his wife wanted to purchase recently I advised them to get a used SQ set, easily found where they live in San Antonio. They've had their W/D for several years and are happy with them.