laundry
Expert Score
6.8

Maytag Centennial MVWC555DW Washing Machine Review

This Centennial is worth celebrating

December 10, 2014
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

The Maytag Centennial MVWC555DW (MSRP $649) is a washing machine that's designed and assembled in America, for Americans. It's a 4.3 cu. ft. top loader–the type of washing machine that's most popular in the US. It doesn't hold back any water for the sake of efficiency–guzzling three times as much as many front loaders. And it's focused entirely on stain removal.

Performance-wise, that makes it one of the best top loaders we've tested. The only modernity is this otherwise-traditional design is a new wash impeller, a more efficient design that replaces old-school a pole agitators.

To read our full review of this washer's matching dryer, the Maytag MEDC555DW, click here.

Design & Usability

This is your mother's washer

The Maytag MVWC555DW does not reinvent the wheel. It proudly sticks to what's worked over the past few decades. The control panel is laid out for right-to-left use, with knobs for all the necessities, from soil level to fabric softener. The design scheme hasn't changed since the last iteration of this model, or the one before that.

The only major drawbacks of the old fashioned controls are the absent timer and Quick cycle. There's a progress bar–similar to what you'd see on a dishwasher–but unlike more modern machines, it won't tell you how many minutes before your laundry is done. Also, the lack of a Quick cycle means the shortest wash still lasts over an hour.

The white body, the lightweight lid, and the manual settings are exactly what you'd find on a fifty year old washer. It'll work for most people, and no extra features means no chance for confusion.

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Performance & Features

If it ain't broke...

...Then don't fix it, right? The technology behind top loaders is based on the days when people stirred laundry in boiling pots of water. It worked then, and for the most part, it works now. The added bonus, of course, is that the Maytag MVWC555DW can stir laundry much faster than any human, and updated technology means it uses less water.

In our tests, the PowerWash cycle exhibited the best washing performance. Here's where you'll find all that "power" Maytag talks about in their advertising. Sure it took an hour and a half, but that's what this cycle is meant for: clean clothes, not speed.

Across all the cycles we tested, the Centennial performed the best against blood and red wine. That's a good sign since these two substances are on the opposite sides of the pH scale–meaning the Centennial has good range. Given a retail price hovering around $535, this washer is punching well above its weight class.

Interior
A 4.3-cu.-ft. drum View Larger

The MVWC555DW achieves this level of performance by ditching the old pole agitators of the not-so-distant past. You may remember the pole agitator as that thing that your sheets always used to get tangled up in. This time around, the Centennial gets an impeller, which allows for more spray, more motion, and a deeper clean. However, it's still not as efficient as a front loader, or even the highest-efficiency top loader. In fact, we estimate the yearly running cost for the MVWC555DW to be on the order of $82. That's almost triple the running cost of a front loader, and double the better top loaders we've tested.

For in-depth performance information, please visit the Science Page.

Conclusion

American Made
The Centennial was designed and assembled in America. View Larger

The Centennial stands the test of time

In the appliance market, there's always a bit of a schism between old versus new. The Maytag MVWC555DW represents the old, the proven, and the familiar. It's the type of washer that fills up with water and spins. For a lot of people, that's enough.

It may use older technology, but that doesn't mean it's not effective. For anyone who wants a top loader that focuses on performance and nothing else, Maytag's MVWC555DW fits the bill.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

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