Woman's hand selecting spin cycle on a white washing machine
Washing Machines
6 min. read

Which Spin Cycle Should I Use?

Coming a long way since the invention of the first washing machine, dating back to as early as the 17th century, modern machines are designed to make our lives even easier. However, it can be confusing, and slightly overwhelming, when you come to change or set a spin or wash cycle. With so many different options available to us, it’s important that we’re choosing the correct cycles for the items and materials we’re washing.

Which spin cycle should I use?


In this article, we’ll be taking you through wash cycles and spin cycle speeds to ensure your washing comes out spick and span every single time, regardless of the garments you’re laundering.


What is a spin speed?

A spin speed refers to the number of times the drum inside your washing machine spins round in a minute. This speed is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm). For example, if a washing machine is set to 1400 rpm, then the washing machine drum will turn around 1400 times in one minute. The higher the rmp, the more water will be removed at the end of the cycle.

Spin cycle speeds

You can manually change the speed of your spin cycle depending on the fabrics you’re washing. However, most washing machines are set to the standard 1200 rpm/1400 rpm, a speed which suits most washing loads. So you don’t have to worry about the spin cycle speed for the majority of the time. However, you may want to change the speeds when washing delicate items or silk fabrics. Here’s a standard guide:

  • Cotton: 1400 rpm
  • Wool: 1200 rpm
  • Denim: 900 rpm
  • Dress shirts: 600 rpm
  • Delicates: 600 rpm
  • Silk: 400 rpm
Which spin cycle generates the most noise?

Generally, the higher the rpm, the louder the spin cycle will be. This can largely depend on the balance of your washing machine, too. If you hear banging, then your washing machine will usually need to be rebalanced, or you may find that the washing machine drum needs replacing. 

If you’re looking to have your washing machine on a 1400 rpm spin cycle for the majority of the time, then you may wish to switch to a washing machine which is ‘extra silent’, although you could end up paying a little extra for this feature. If you’re looking to reduce noise levels without buying a brand new machine, then choose a slower spin cycle which is adequate for the load you’re washing.

What are the benefits of each cycle?

Selecting the correct washing machine cycle for your washing is important to ensure that your garments last and remain in pristine condition for a long time to come. Here are several cycles you can choose from, depending on the items you’re washing:

Cottons: most suitable for cotton items requiring a high agitation wash (such as towels or bedsheets). Cotton cycles usually have a high spin setting, and so is not recommended for delicate items.

Synthetics: offers a medium agitation wash with a low spin speed. This is best for synthetic fabrics, such as polyester sportswear or acrylic blended garments.

Delicates: suitable for delicates, such as wool, silk, lace or thin blouses. This cycle offers a low agitation wash on a low-spin speed, making it ideal for washing underwear, socks and other delicate materials.

Quick wash: ideal for those who need their washing to be done in a short amount of time. This is usually only recommended for lightly soiled clothes. With a shortened wash cycle and a high-speed spin, the drying times can be made significantly faster. It’s not recommended that you put wool, silk, lace, beaded items or other delicates, through a quick wash cycle.

Hand wash: this can be used for items which are only to be washed by hand. It’s usually recommended that silk, soft cottons or items which are beaded, are put through a hand wash cycle. The low agitation speeds and low spin speed will prevent the fabric from tearing, ripping or stretching. 

Which spin cycle removes the most water?

The higher the rpm of the spin cycle, the more water is removed from the load. So an rpm setting of 1600 rpm would remove more water from your washing than a spin cycle which was set to 900 rpm, for example.

As the clothes are spun around, faster and faster, the water which has penetrated them begins to gain momentum. While the clothes will stay stuck to the outer part of the drum, the water will begin to lift away from the garments and be drained out of the machine via a water pump. The faster the drum turns, the more water will be expelled, leaving you with damp, but not considerably wet, washing. This also means it will take less time for your washing to completely dry when hung out.

What is the most energy-efficient cycle?

Most modern washing machines will come with an eco-friendly setting, where you can wash your clothes in a more environmentally-friendly way without having to change the speed of your spin cycle. However, if your washing machine doesn’t come with an eco-friendly setting, then you would be better off washing your clothes on a standard setting, which will often mean having it on a spin speed of between 1200 rpm and 1600 rpm. Slower washing machine cycles were found to have released more microplastics into the oceans than faster, more general cycles.

Washing machine repairs and installation at Domex

Domex Van Outside Industrial Warehouse

If you have a washing machine that needs installing, or an existing one which needs repairing, then look no further than Domex. We have a team of highly-skilled, fully-qualified engineers who take immense pride in helping our customers throughout London, Surrey and the surrounding areas.

Whether you have a brand new washing machine which needs fitting with expert precision, or if your old machine needs repairing, then you’ll always be able to rely on our friendly, knowledgeable team to rectify any issues you have. 

When choosing to book your washing machine installation or washing machine repair with Domex, you will be able to take advantage of our My Repair service. This will enable you to access important paperwork and receipts, change appointment times, see a photo of your appointed engineer and track your repair. For more information about the services we offer, or to see the brands we work with, get in touch with us today – we’re always happy to help.

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