As a result the wash action in an HE, impeller top load washer is much more gentle compared to that of the agitator models. I was leaning towards the impeller version because of it lacks the large agitator in the middle but the part about getting clothes cleaner made me second guess my choice. The main difference between agitator & impeller, apart from that impeller nowadays, are more common in. The high-efficient (HE) washing machines, is that impeller is more gentle on clothes, comparatively. 2. Impeller machines are potentially less damaging to clothes, but because of the gentler motion, they may not clean clothes as effectively as agitator machines. With Agitators ; Washers with agitators have an aggressive mechanism approach compared to the gentle cycle of washers without agitators. There is a minor price difference with the model with the impeller costing a little more. Because of the impeller there is also a slight increase in tub size. So with impeller washer in the tub, your clothes will experience less wear & tear as compared to an agitator washer. However, we must also note that the current crop of agitator models (especially higher on the price point scale) employ features to care for your fabrics in a greater degree (motion control for the drum, properly engineered vans and fins that help with fabric care). The impeller tumbles clothes against each other, enabling an even distribution of water and detergent. Type Of Clothes Involved. The cleaning takes place when the clothes rub against each other.