Washing clothes can be a back-breaking job. It explains why people in the past used to delegate this job to dhobis or washermen.
Today, with technology improvements, you have washing machines doing this job for you in the comforts of your home. Washing machines come in different types and sizes, depending on the functionality and capacity. They include fully-automatic machines and semi-automatic appliances.
This article dwells on semi-automatic washing machines and discusses the features to look for in such devices. Before doing so, here are some excellent models available in India in this category.
1. Whirlpool 10.5 Kg 5 Star, Semi-Automatic Top-Loading Washing Machine – ACE XL
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Of the different washing machine types, the semi-automatic models are the easiest to operate. Anyone with an elementary knowledge of its functions can use the Whirlpool semi-automatic washing machine. It comes with easy-to-use features to deliver an excellent washing experience.
This Whirlpool device comes equipped with 3D Scrub technology to get rid of ten different types of stains, including the toughest ones like grease, tea spills, and even ink. This appliance features a 3D Turbo Impeller with a rotary stem and 3D scrub pads to provide triple motion and remove dirt effectively.
This appliance’s standout feature is the unique hard water wash program that proves handy to use in areas where the water contains high TDS levels. The 3D Lint filter features a unique triple-layered filtration process to collect lint and ensure that clothes come out fresh after every wash.
This machine comes with a large Ace XL washtub to enable washing of heavy loads in one go. The high RPM speed ensures quicker drying compared to other machines in its niche.
The waterproof and shockproof features allow you to place your machine anywhere in the house, even inside your bathrooms. This feature does not damage the control panel, even when there is water spillage.
2. Samsung 7.2 Kg Semi-Automatic Top-Loading Washing Machine – WT725QPNDMPXTL
Semi-automatic washing machines are popular because they are the most energy-efficient of all washing devices.
This Samsung model, equipped with Double Storm Technology, is amongst the most energy-efficient of the lot. This technology creates a constantly variable and powerful water wave to move garments around and rub them together for a better washing experience.
The Center Jet Technology generates water jets from the pulsator’s center to improve washing effectiveness by lifting the clothes that fall on its surface, thus preventing tangling of clothes.
This washing appliance features a unique Air Turbo mechanism to enhance drying times. It works by rotating the drum rapidly and draw in more air. It also ensures to remove more water from your clothes and help them dry faster.
This device features a buzzer to signal the end of the wash cycle. Thus, you can efficiently manage your time by transferring the clothes from the wash drum to the spin tub. You are also less likely to forget that you have wet clothes in the washtub, with the buzzer alerting you frequently.
It is easy to move this appliance as it features castor wheels strategically behind the stand’s legs. The rust-proof body is also one of the highlights of this semi-automatic washing machine.
3. Whirlpool 7.5 Kg 5 Star Semi-Automatic Top-Loading Washing Machine
Whirlpool semi-automatic washing machines are popular with Indian homemakers because they provide exceptional features to deliver a thorough washing experience. This machine comes with a unique design known as the Ace Wash Station. It allows you to sort, stack, and carry clothes with ease.
Soiled clothes require deep soaking for an extended period to help remove dirt thoroughly. This device features Soak technology that soaks clothes in concentrated detergent for the efficient dirt removal.
This machine displays three different wash programs, delicate, normal, and heavy, to ensure a safe and customized wash for each fabric type. The in-built collar scrubber reduces your workload as you do not have to indulge in manual scrubbing.
The dry timer feature is unique as it ensures a superior drying result. The spin shower feature helps to rinse your clothes properly and reduces detergent residue from your clothes.
The Whirlpool washing machine comes fitted with four large wheels for easy mobility. The end of the wash cycle buzzer alerts you to transfer the clothes from the washing tub to the spinning tub.
As power cuts are frequent in India, the machine stops during a power cut. The best aspect is that the Memory Retention feature enables it to restart from the same position in the wash/spin cycle after power restoration.
4. LG 7 Kg 4 Star Semi-Automatic Top-Loading Washing Machine – P7020NGAY
With a plethora of semi-automatic washing machines available on the market, you need to be different from the others. LG believes in this logic as its 7 Kg semi-automatic washing appliance comes with several unique but attractive features.
This device features a Norami Pulsator to rotate the clothes effectively and eliminate every stain from them. The three wash programs available on this device can wash all types of fabrics. You have a choice between Gentle, Normal, and Heavy, depending on the fabric type.
The collar scrubber located inside the washtub reduces your time and effort spent scrubbing them clean of dirt. The presence of the lint filter proves helpful to collect the lint coming out of the clothes. Thus, the debris does not choke the drainpipe and affects the machine’s overall performance.
The unique spin shower arrangement sprays water during the spinning cycle, rinses off the detergent residue from your clothes, and makes them look clean and fresh.
The Air-Dry feature helps in quicker drying of clothes in the spin tub as the drum spins at high speeds to remove moisture. The spinning motion draws air from outside to aid the drying process.
This machine is unique because it comes equipped with a 3mm plastic cover with rat repellant chemicals to keep the rats away from it.
5. Whirlpool 7 Kg 5 Star Semi-Automatic Top-Loading Washing Machine – SUPERB ATOM
Whirlpool has made washing clothes easy by introducing innovative TurboScrub Technology that ensures to remove the toughest stains from your clothes and delivers an impeccable washing experience.
The special in-built collar scrubber gives your collars and cuffs an excellent scrubbing to remove stubborn dirt.
The best aspect of this machine is that it features a scrubbing station to allow easy scrubbing while in the standing position. The flow-back design allows water and detergent to flow smoothly back into the washtub.
The other exciting aspect is the presence of a 3-wash program to cater to different kinds of fabrics. It comprises a delicate wash for your silk and woolen clothes, whereas the normal cycle is perfect for your regular clothes, and the heavy wash cycle is perfect for bed sheets, blankets, jeans, etc.
The 66L large tub can accommodate sufficient clothes and also proves as an alternative water storage container in places experiencing water shortages. The waterproof and shockproof panel allows you to place the machine anywhere in the house.
One of the exciting features is the End of Cycle Buzzer to alert you of the wash cycle completion, prompting you to transfer the wet clothes to the spin tub.
This machine is easily portable as it features four large wheels strategically placed beneath the device.
Buying Guide for Semi-Automatic Washing Machines
If you are purchasing a washing machine for the first time, we recommend going for a semi-automatic appliance because it can take time to get used to the washing machine’s mechanisms.
Fully-automatic machines have special features that can take time to get used to. It is better to learn the ropes on a semi-automatic washing appliance before graduating to a fully-automatic model.
Before discussing the features of a semi-automatic washing machine, you should consider the following points.
- The Price – The semi-automatic models are at the lowest end of the washing machine pricing pyramid. You can get good appliances at affordable costs.
- Loading Capacity – This factor depends on the number of clothes you intend to wash daily. It further depends on the number of people residing in your house.
- Functionalities – Semi-automatic washing machines offer a range of features. The high-end machines offer better facilities than the basic level appliances.
- Loading Option – Generally, semi-automatic washing machines come with top-loading options.
- Water-Saving Options – As you control the amount of water required for a washing cycle, the semi-automatic washing machines help save water.
How does a semi-automatic washing machine operate?
Semi-automatic washing appliances are the easiest to operate. They reduce your efforts tremendously by washing and rinsing your soiled clothes thoroughly. Though not as advanced as the fully-automatic versions, these machines are handy to have in your homes.
The semi-automatic washing units are available in two types, single tub machines and twin tub appliances. The twin tub option is more popular in the Indian market.
As the name suggests, the single tub machine features the same tub for washing and rinsing clothes. In the twin tub appliances, there are two different tubs for washing and rinsing clothes. The single tub devices are smaller in comparison and hence, occupy less space in your home.
The name semi-automatic suggests that these machines involve some degree of manual labor. The machine involves you to decide the amount of water and detergent required for a specific fabric load.
You have to put the clothes inside the washing tub and add water manually. Some machines come with inlet pipes, but you have to be alert enough to shut the water supply on time.
Subsequently, you add the detergents and, depending on the extent of soiling, allow the clothes to soak. On starting the washing cycle, the machine takes a specific time for the job. Generally, these devices feature a buzzer arrangement to alert you that the washing job is over.
You now have to transfer the clothes manually from the washtub to the rinse tub. You can now drain out the water from the washtub and switch on the spin tub.
The spin tub spins at tremendous speed to rinse the clothes and make them free from detergent residue. As the spin tub has a high RPM, the clothes come out sufficiently dried. You can then hang them on the clothesline for further drying.
The Merits of a Semi-automatic washing machine
- You save money as these machines cost less than the fully-automatic models.
- Semi-automatic washing devices help save water because you add the water manually. You can stop when you feel it is enough.
- These machines allow you to stop them at any time during the cycle and add or remove clothes.
- You have more control over the washing mechanism. Hence, you can take personal care of your delicate fabrics and add water accordingly.
The Demerits of a Semi-automatic washing machine
- These machines consume your valuable time as you have to be around them to oversee their functioning.
- As far as quality is concerned, the fully-automatic machines are better than these appliances.
- Semi-automatic washing appliances are not as gentle on your clothes as fully-automatic machines are.
- If the wiring in your home is not proper, you can get an electric shock when transferring clothes from the wash drum to the spin drum.
Feature to Consider when Purchasing a semi-automatic washing machine
Purchasing a semi-automatic washing machine is never easy. You have to look at various aspects.
The ideal machine capacity depends on the number of people in your home and the number of clothes you intend to wash daily. Generally, small machines can suffice for single individuals and couples. If you have children, you have a greater demand for the machine. Therefore, you should go for a machine with a higher capacity, say up to 6.5 Kg.
If there are more than four persons or around 15 to 20 clothes on average daily, you should not settle for any machine less than 7.0 Kg. The higher the capacity, the better it is because it can accommodate more clothes.
Semi-automatic machines, especially the twin-tub versions, come with two motor settings, one for the washtub and another for the spin tub. The rotation speed of the spin tub is always higher than the washtub.
The motor, therefore, comes with a pulley and conveyor belt arrangement. These machines vibrate a lot and make more noise compared to a fully-automatic washing machine.
The conveyor belt arrangement causes friction and affects the overall efficiency of the machine. These appliances do not come with inverter motors or Direct Drive Technology. Hence, you can save on the pricing quotient but at the cost of efficiency.
Compared to the fully-automatic washing machines, these appliances do not have multiple washing programs. Some of the latest models feature three types of wash cycles, delicate, normal, and heavy. You can choose the appropriate one, depending on the machine load.
The delicate wash cycle should be the perfect one for your silk sarees, Kurtis, woolen garments, and baby clothes that require more care.
The normal wash cycle should be ideal for your regular use daily. The heavy wash cycle is best for heavy-duty washing involving your Jeans, pants, bedsheets, blankets, pillow covers, etc.
The semi-automatic washing machines do not have automatic water level selection features. They come with level indicators, but you have to shut off the water supply when you feel it is enough.
These washing machines are the best when it comes to soaking clothes to remove dirt. As you control the water supply and the machine starting functions, you can delay the start manually and allow clothes to soak for extended periods if necessary.
Semi-automatic washing machines require you to do some manual work. One of them is transferring clothes from the washtub to the spin tub. However, a single-tub machine does not require you to do so. Another manual labor is scrubbing clothes before putting them inside the washing machine.
The semi-automatic washing devices do not feature agitators that help remove dirt from the clothes. They come equipped with collar scrubbers that prove useful in removing stubborn dirt from collars and cuffs.
However, Indian homemakers prefer to scrub the collars clean manually before washing the shirts. The presence of a washing platform on top of the drum allows you this facility. This washing platform features a uniquely designed draining mechanism that allows soap and water to drip into the wash drum.
These washing platforms also double up as sorting platforms. You can also carry your washed clothes on this platform because they are detachable from the machine.
The present-day semi-automatic washing appliances come equipped with modern technology like Turbo Scrub in Whirlpool machines that automatically scrubs your collars and cuffs to remove stubborn stains.
The Double Storm technology in the Samsung appliances ensures better water flow to enhance the washing experience. These machines also feature Center Jet technology, where powerful water jets from the pulsator’s central base push the clothes to the top and prevent it from tangling with others.
LG appliances come with a sturdy pulsator to assist in the washing procedure.
Whirlpool models allow you to wash clothes comfortably with hard water. These units come with a unique in-built mechanism that softens hard water and allows the detergent to dissolve completely into it.
The semi-automatic machines usually feature plastic drums. These tubs are light, but they are subject to damage. The constant exposure to water and detergent makes the interiors soft and slippery.
Hence, it is advisable to look for machines with stainless-steel drums. It can increase the pricing factor, but it improves the machine’s overall durability.
As you wash clothes in a washing machine, you can expect a good amount of lint and other cloth debris. These ingredients can enter the drainpipe and choke it. The remedy is in the form of a lint filter that comes with almost all machines.
This filter accumulates lint and other debris from the clothes to deliver an excellent washing performance. You can remove the lint filter and clean it separately.
These appliances are different from the fully-automatic machines because of the provision of an additional spin tub. This tub spins at exceptional speeds to squeeze out the maximum water and detergent from your washed clothes. Thus, the spin tubs are good at drying out clothes. Though you need to hang the washed clothes on a clothesline for complete drying, the performance is better than many fully-automatic washing machines.
Some machines feature special facilities like Air-Dry that allows dry air to pass into the spin tub as it rotates at high speeds. The air inflow enhances the drying process further.
When selecting your semi-automatic washing machine, it is better to go for the one that displays high RPM on the spin tubs. The higher the rotating speed, the better is the dirt squeezing capacity.
The washing machines have exposed bottom portions through which rats and cockroaches can easily damage the internal parts. Rats are the more dangerous of the animals. They can chew the pipes and wires and damage the machines.
Therefore, some of the latest semi-automatic machines come with reinforcement like a plastic covering coated with rat repellant chemical. It discourages rats from entering the machine. A rate mesh is also an excellent option to have, but it can increase the machine’s overall weight.
Power Saving Features
Of all the different types of washing machines, the semi-automatic models consume the least power. However, you have to contend with power cuts in a country like India. The latest models come with auto-restart features that allow the machine to resume working from where it left off during a power cut.
Precautions to take
These appliances require you to handle wet clothes more frequently when compared to the fully-automatic devices. Hence, you expose yourself to electric shocks if your house does not have proper earthing.
The modern machines feature waterproof and shockproof control panels. They allow you to operate them without having to wipe your hands of soap. However, it is necessary to exercise caution to avoid unnecessary problems. The ideal solution is to switch off the main supply and remove the mains’ plugs before transferring clothes from the washtub to the spin tub.
The semi-automatic machines are larger than the fully-automatic models because of the presence of an additional tub. Hence, your home should have more space to accommodate this appliance.
As these machines feature two tubs, they are comparatively heavy. Hence, they come with wheels to allow smooth mobility. You can easily shift these machines from one room to the other by pushing the appliance.
We have discussed the various features one should consider when purchasing a semi-automatic washing machine.
This buying guide would have made it easy to select the ideal washing machine, depending on your requirements. The best models available on the Indian market include LG, Whirlpool, Samsung, Onida, Godrej, and many more.
Last update on 2021-03-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API