GE's $699 GTW685BSLWS top-load washing machine expertly balances affordability and luxury. It features a traditional agitator inside the cleaning bin, an outdated, but still popular design that typically costs less. It also has a premium-looking transparent lid, a silver display panel and a ton of extras, like 14 cleaning cycles and a "delay wash" setting.
And, if you decide to spring for a $49 GE ConnectPlus Wi-Fi module, you can connect your GTW685BSLWS to the GE Laundry app, as well as check on the status of your clothes with your Amazon Alexa and Google Home speakers. This top-loader cleans really well, too.
The main downside? It was noisier than a lot of washers I've reviewed. Even so, its skillful stain removal, long list of features and solid design more than make up for it (assuming you're able to tuck your washer away behind a door to keep the noise down).
Get to know GE's GTW685BSLWS
Take a look at the GTW685BSLWS's main features compared to other models in its price range:
Comparing washing machines
||GE GTW685BSLWS||Kenmore 25132||GE GTW485ASJWS|
|Capacity||4.5 cubic feet||4.3 cubic feet||4.2 cubic feet|
|# of cycles||14||12||13|
|Energy consumption||150 kWh/year||300 kWh/year||152 kWh/year|
|Dimensions (width, height, depth)||27 x 46 x 27 inches||27.5 x 36.8 x 27.8 inches||27 x 44 x 27 inches|
|Smart integrations||GE Laundry app, Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant with ConnectPlus Wi-Fi module (sold separately)||No||No|
For just $49 more than, the GTW685BSLWS has a larger capacity, more cleaning cycles, slightly better estimated energy consumption and way more optional smart integrations.
Note: If you want access to the GE Laundry app or to check in on the status of your washer via Alexa or Google Assistant, you must buy the $49 ConnectPlus accessory.
ConnectPlus is a Wi-Fi module that lets you connect your washer to the GE Laundry app, as well as your Alexa or Google Home smart speaker. Assuming your Wi-Fi connection is strong, this process should be very quick and straightforward. At the same time, the app and the voice control integrations don't actually do much. You can't start, stop or pause a cleaning cycle; instead, you're limited to checking in on your washer remotely to find out its current status and/or how much time is remaining on a cleaning cycle.
I specifically used the GE Laundry app, as well as anto check in on my GTW685BSLWS cycles. GE's Geneva Alexa skill does require you to say, "Alexa, ask Geneva for the status of my washing machine" rather than just "Alexa, what's the status of my washing machine?" It's slightly clunky, but not a deal breaker. Again, the GTW685BSLWS's overall smart functionality is only somewhat useful, so I'm glad GE lets you decide by making the ConnectPlus an optional purchase.