This paper deals with the dynamical behavior of washing machines. Due to large unbalance forces of the laundry during the spinning process a mechanical model has been established from d’Alambert’s principle that considers both the rigid body motion and the elastic vibrations. According to the complexity of the machine parts the results of a finite element mode shape analysis are used to describe the elastic behavior. The distinct bodies of the system are linked together through linear and nonlinear force elements resulting in the excitation of several machine orders. In order to verify the model, simulation results are compared with measurements.