When your washing machine gives out, consider replacing it with a high-efficiency front-loading machine. These machines use less energy and about half the water of conventional top-loading machines. They also require less detergent per load, reducing the potential amount of chemicals entering the wastewater system. Although traditionally quite expensive at $800+, the price of front-loading washing machines is starting to come down. Amana makes a top-rated model for around $600. Consumer Reports tests show that the lower priced models are just as effective and efficient as the models costing hundreds more. A high-efficiency front-loading washing machine will save an average of $75 a year in utility costs, more than paying for itself in the long run.