The maximum load capacity of a front load washer can vary between 12 to 20 pounds, depending on the size of the machine. Clothing and fabrics loaded in a front load washer should be packed loosely to minimize wrinkling and uneven washing during a cycle.
An overloaded washing machine reduces the amount of water that can be loaded into the washing chamber. This limits how much circulation the water can achieve and can cause sub-par cleaning results. Overloaded washing cycles can also cause fabrics to become damaged as they are pressed against the machine's agitator. Other side effects of an overloaded washing machine also include positional shifts that can cause damage to the frame of the machine.