Samsung WF398ATPAWR Washing Machine Review
Unassuming, but powerful.
The Samsung WF398ATPAWR (MSRP $1,099) is an affordable high-end washer with quite good cleaning performance. It has neither a huge drum nor a ton of special features, but it delivers on the basics. In fact, it had one of the best Heavy Duty cycles we've ever seen. A plain white facade and vibration reduction technology means it'll be neither seen nor heard. Thankfully, that's also the case for stains.
Design & Usability
Easy to use, nothing to confuse
Like nearly ever other Samsung washer we've tested, the WF398ATPAWR is a breeze to use. All the buttons have clear labels and all options have indicator lights to tell that they're active. This washer's outside appearance is of little note. In fact, from the side it looks like a classroom white board.
On the front, there's a red LCD display that counts down the time of each wash. It dominates the front of the machine simply because there aren't many other buttons or dials present. While it may lack flash, that makes it extremely user friendly.
Performance & Features
The heaviest of Heavy Duty cycles
Despite its humble appearance, the Samsung WF398ATPAWR had better cleaning performance than many of its closest competitors, including the handsome Whirlpool Duet WFW88HEAC which has an MSRP of $1,299.
While the majority of cycles proved quite good, the three hour Heavy Duty cycle was truly exceptional. There was nothing that it couldn't deal with. From blood to cocoa, it showed no mercy on stains. In fact, of the dozens of machines we've tested, this Samsung managed to get the highest score against tough Red Wine stains when we turned the dial to Heavy Duty. If you've got a laundry disaster, this machine is the National Guard.
The WF398ATPAWR has a two and a half hour Sanitize cycle and an internal water heater that makes it possible to reach high temperatures, but otherwise lacks high-end features for washing. Vibration Reduction Technology uses ball bearings to help stabilize its drum in order to reduce noise. Once we balanced the WF398ATPAWR, it really was quite quiet. I sit next to these machines all day, and I hardly noticed that it was running. If your laundry is near your living space, this may be the machine for you.
I thought I couldn't be surprised by washing machines anymore, but the Samsung WF398ATPAWR proved me wrong. It may not look like anything special, but it'll get your clothes clean. And behind that bland façade is one of the most powerful Heavy Duty cycles on the market. Yes, it lacks wash features, but if you live in a small space or need to put a laundry set on a second floor, it's quiet and stable enough not to intrude. If you like your stains and washing machines equally unobtrusive, check out the Samsung WF398ATPAWR.
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