Have you ever seen your clothes spinning rapidly in your washing machine and wondered just how fast they’re going?
The spin speed of a washing machine is given in revolutions per minute (rpm).
We can convert the washing machine’s rpm to miles per hour (mph), by considering a point on the edge of the drum, and thinking about how far that would travel as it spins round.
To do this, we need to know the circumference of the drum.
If we assume the radius of a regular washing machine drum is 24 cm, then the circumference will be:
Circumference = π*24 = 75.4 cm
If we assume that the spin speed is 1200 rpm, then there will be 1200 * 60 = 72,000 revolutions per hour.
If the circumference is 75.4 cm, it will spin (75.4/100) * 1200 = 904.8 metres per minute, or 904.8 * 60 = 54,288 metres per hour. This is the equivalent of 33.73 miles.
Therefore, a washing machine with a spin speed of 1200 rpm would be spinning at around 33.73 miles per hour.
This is the speed a single point on the edge of the drum would move during the spin cycle.
The formula for converting a washing machine’s rpm to mph is as follows:
Mph = (circumference in metres * rpm * 60)/1609.34
What Is RPM?
The spin speed of a washing machine is usually given in rpm instead of mph. Rpm stands for revolutions per minute and measures how quickly a machine is operating by how many rotations occur every minute.
These days, most standard washing machines have an rpm of between 800 and 1600 on the spin cycle.
For some of the newest, most high-tech washing machines, or models you’d find at a laundrette, you can encounter up to 1800 rpm. The higher the rpm and the bigger the drum, the higher the mph this translates to.
Lover of coffee, painting, and all things cute and fluffy. I’m always on the lookout for easier, more gentle ways to tackle awful household chores.