LG WM5000HVA Twin Wash and SideKick review

LG's Twin Wash system packs a Schwarzenegger and a DeVito in one stack

The LG Twin Wash and SideKick tackle two loads at once to cut down your laundry time.
The LG Twin Wash and SideKick tackle two loads at once to cut down your laundry time.
The LG Twin Wash and SideKick tackle two loads at once to cut down your laundry time.

Highs

  • Inventive use of the pedestal
  • Allergen and steam settings
  • Good stain removal
  • Lots of customization options

Lows

  • Expensive
  • No iOS app
  • Steam cycles are long

DT Editors' Rating

Today’s washer and dryers have so many settings and gimmicks that it can be overwhelming. But sometimes a gimmicky feature comes along that actually makes sense. Case in point: The LG Twin Wash with its handy SideKick pedestal does something we could all use a little extra help with: laundry. The LG Twin Wash is actually two washing machines in one slim design. The LG SideKick is a hideaway small washing machine nestled hidden in the pedestal is one of those “inventive” designs that solves a problem. We just wish it wasn’t so expensive; at over $700, it’s close to the cost of a standalone washing machine.

The top front-loading washer has all the bells and whistles you’d expect in a high-end model, including a steam and allergen and sanitizing settings. It also has settings for the following loads: normal, heavy duty, bedding, bright whites, rinse and spin, jumbo wash, speed wash, sportswear, permanent press, delicates, towels, and download (more on custom programming later). In addition, you can control temperature, spin, soil, and signal (high to none at all) on the LED screen to the right. While it might be overwhelming when you see all the settings, the knob in the middle with all the cycles is mostly what you’ll use to select the type of wash you want to run.

The detergent, fabric softener, and bleach compartments hide out at the top of the machine, beneath a lid that slides back with a bit of a push. Its placement is important to note, if you were planning on stacking a dryer on top.

Housed underneath the Twin Wash is a small washing machine ideal for tiny loads, including baby clothes, intimates, sportswear, and items that require a hand wash setting. The bin is small (1.0 cubic feet), just enough for a few tops or two sets of gym clothes. Best of all, the two machines have separate settings and hook-ups so they can run simultaneously or separately, reducing the amount of time you spend in the laundry room.

Get a kick out of laundry

We used the washing machines for several weeks, washing everything from bedding to clothing with ease. On regular settings, colored clothes came out bright and whites were pristine. Activating the stain setting really helped get out baked-in stains. Additionally, we were impressed with how much the 4.5-cubic-feet drum could hold. We were able to wash four sets of sheets, a mattress pad, and blanket all in one load. Better yet, using the sanitize feature we were able to get a dog pee stain out.

Activating the stain setting really helped get out baked-in stains.

While we’re on the topic of pets, we also washed a chair cover that was covered with cat hair and feline urine in the machine on the “allergiene” setting. The result: We had no allergic reaction to the clean chair cover and the stains came out. The only drawback is that it takes well over an hour to run the cycle. Still, that beats the bill you’d get at the dry cleaner if you took it there.

While those items washed in the front-load machine, we were able to run a couple of loads in the SideKick, thanks to the separate water hookup. It lacks a drawer for detergent, so you’ll just have to add it to the bin, old-school style. The good news is you can use HE or the regular stuff. We were able to wash small loads of delicates and active-wear items without having to wait for enough laundry to justify running the large-capacity Twin Wash. Be sure to check the sides of the bin thoroughly, since you can easily leave an item inside. (We found a stiff and smelly handkerchief that sat in the SideKick for several days.) If you’re interested in this model, you’ll need to make sure it will work with your current setup.

Breaking app

The LG Twin Wash with its Wi-Fi connectivity and Android app also taps into the Internet of Things (IoT). After all, what kind of digital home do you really live in if you can’t have your washer on your Wi-Fi network? In this case, the benefit is being able to start your washer and dryer remotely – as long as you’re not using an iPhone. The iOS version is downloadable but doesn’t work at all, according to LG’s customer service. The company told us it’s hoping to have a working version in June. You also need to make sure to turn the machine on before you leave and activate its remote button by holding it down for three seconds. Otherwise, the app will inform you that using the remote start isn’t an option.

This app is also where you can setup custom cleaning modes and then transfer them to the washer and dryer via the “Downloaded” option. You can store one downloaded cycle at a time on the washer, which currently has options such as rainy day, gym clothes, and sweat stain. The app’s descriptions of these cycles are vague (rainy day says, “This cycle washes clothes made slightly wet by rain”), and you won’t learn the temperature or spin speed used until after you download the cycle.

The app shouldn’t be the reason why you do or don’t purchase the LG Twin Wash, and we imagine iOS compatibility is coming soon.

Warranty and support

The LG Twin Wash and SideKick come with a one-year warranty on parts and labor, a 10-year warranty on the Direct Drive Motor, and a lifetime warranty on the stainless steel tub. Phone support is available 6:00 a.m. to midnight CST, and chat support is open 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. CST. When we reached out to LG via chat, we got a response almost immediately.

Conclusion

Overall, the LG Twin Wash holds it own against other high-end models currently available. The addition of the SideKick is a bonus, and particularly useful if you have a lot of hand-wash items or want to wash stinky gym clothes often. You don’t have to get both machines together; if you have a 2009 or later front-load LG washer you may be able to add it as a pedestal. To be sure, visit LG and locate your washer model number to find out which SideKick until will fit.

However, for the price of both units, you could probably buy a separate washer and dryer but that would certainly take up more room. Though the Android app performed well, it’s pretty disappointing the iOS version is currently a non-starter. That said, the SideKick is one of the more useful laundry features we’ve seen in a long time, and the lack of an app isn’t a deal-breaker. The pedestal machine is well executed, easy to use, and a real space saver. After all, who doesn’t want a SideKick that can help them get some of those extra chores done quickly?

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