How To Plan Your Washer And Dryer Space Requirements

Looking to buy a new washer and dryer for your sweet home, but worried about how to measure the washer and dryer space requirements? Then follow ChocolateaAndCraft as this’s the only guide you will ever need to fit them perfectly in your washing room. 

In order to make the best use of the space, it’s essential to know the standard dimensions of a washer and a dryer and the required extra space to install them. In this guide, I’ll take you through step by step on how you can measure the required distance correctly 

Let’s pick up your measuring tape and start!

washer-and-dryer-space-requirements
A typical washer and dryer setup.

Measurements for Your Washer And Dryer

Even though we call it standard, the sizes might still vary a bit between manufacturers and regions. Here are the typical dimensions in inches of the two main areas – the US and Europe.

For a washer in the US, the standard measures are 27 inches wide and 25 to 28 inches deep. For a dryer, the usual depth is up to roughly 36 inches. These machines’ regular height is around 36-inch height for top-loading and from 34 to 39 inches for front-loading.

Measurements from US’s popular washer and dryer manufacturers (width x height x depth):

  • LG: 27 x 38 x 30 inches
  • Fisher & Paykel: 27 x 38 x 32 inches
  • Whirlpool: 27 x 38 x 32 inches
  • Maytag: 27 x 39 x 32 inches

Unlike the US, Europeans use the metric system, so remember to convert the measurements to buy overseas machines. Europe-manufactured washers and dryers tend to be smaller in all three dimensions while being more consistent from manufacturer to manufacturer than those in the US.

Measurements from Europe’s popular washer and dryer manufacturers (width x height x depth):

  • AEG: 60 x 85 x 60 cm
  • Bosch: 59 x 85 x 60 cm
  • Indesit: 59 x 85 x 60 cm
  • Zanussi: 60 x 85 x 50 cm

If you pay attention to Europeans and Americans’ behavior, you’ll see why the European machines are smaller: Europeans usually wash their clothes at home compared to Americans. An advice from the pros: if you want to make the most out of the laundry space, get a European washer and dryer.

How to Allocate Your New Washer And Dryer Space Requirements Correctly 

Step 1: Choose Your Style

Think twice before you spend on the brand new washing and drying machines if you want to have them shipped home then realize they can’t fit. Always measure the required space for installing them first!

Let’s see some common arranging styles:

  • Side-by-side pairs
  • Staked pairs
  • Small space pairs

Side-by-Side Pairs.

When should you go with this setup? If your laundry space is wide enough, but the height is limited, this is the go-to-style. This setup usually takes up around 56-65 inches in width, up to 40 inches high, and 31 to 35 inches deep. 

A variation of this style is installing an additional pedestal to front-loading washers and dryers to load and unload conveniently. It’ll bump up the height by roughly 15 inches.

Side-by-side pairs. Image by Anna

Stacked Pairs

What about the opposite situation, having a high ceiling but limited horizontal space? Stacked pairs is the better option. The style requires an area of 28 x 80 x 31-34 inches (width x height x depth), but make sure to add 20 inches high if your washer is top-loading. 

It would be best to consider the stacked laundry center, which is a bit more compact than the usual stacked units.

Stacked laundry center. Image by Matt Janicki

Small Space Pairs

The last one, small space pairs, is for rooms, which are both horizontal and vertical space limited. Manufacturers make these washers and dryers to fit in closets, small apartments, and homes. 

Whether you choose to place them side-by-side or stacked, they take less space than the regular pairs mentioned above: 45 x 34 x 25 inches for side-by-side, and 24 x 68 x 25 inches for stacked.

Step 2: Add Some Extra Space

Use only the dimensions measured above won’t be enough. To operate them properly, you need to consider and plan more thoroughly.

First, your washer and dryer need to breathe! Yes, it sounds funny, but they need space for clearance. Add an inch or two surrounding the units to allow airflow and cleaning. That’ll expand your appliances’ lifespan.

Second, noise reduction is necessary. You don’t want the house to rumble every time you do the laundry, do you? The trick is not to push the appliances too close together and to the wall. What you should do is leave a small gap between them, on top and sides, at least an inch to minimize noise.

Third, it’s essential to plan for access space. Whether your units are front-loading or top-loading, they need room to open and close. The standard is around 48 inches in front of your washer and dryer for easy moving. 

You should also leave some extra space for the future, as one day you might want or need to swap in a new dryer, which may not be the same size as the previous.

Finally, there is ventilation and electricity. Cables, hoses, and ventilation require a bonus room to function properly. The recommended space for them is around 6 inches behind the appliances.

Step 3: Make a Map

You hear me right, make a map. No one wishes to buy a new washer and dryer then realize they can’t pass the door. Besides knowing the washer and dryer measurements, you should draw out a map from the entry door to your laundry room. Remember to consider the width and height of all the doors, hallways, and staircases that the appliances must go through.

Just by taking an extra step, you’ll save yourself from frustration and swipe your credit card more confidently. No more returns and no more fighting between you and your life’s partner for making the wrong choice. Follow each step above will guarantee your washer and dryer fits perfectly in the room.

How to Organize Space for Your Washer and Dryer

You’ve known how to allocate enough space for them. You’ll now learn how to reorganize the space to create a functional laundry room no matter what size the place is.

Pick up your house blueprints from the designers and some actual measurements of the room. We can divide the washing space into three types: small, medium, and spacious.

Small Rooms

If your room is roughly 6 ft by 7 ft, or 1.8 m x 2.2m, your room is categorized as small. But don’t worry, there is always a way to fit enough essentials in such space.

European units can be stacked and positioned in the same row with a sick for this kind of room. If yours are US ones, you should move the sink to another wall. After positioning the machines, there should still be enough space for a drying rack and an ironing board. Though, it would be challenging to do ironing in such a tiny area.

Medium Rooms

Middle-sized space is enough to fit a side-by-side pairs setup. This kind of place’s dimensions are 6 ft x 9 ft if you are in the US, or 1.8 m x 2.5 m in Europe. This space allows you to have more variations in your designing process.

Regarding ironing, you definitely have enough space to move around. Yet, it’ll be more comfortable if the door is opened outward so that it won’t get in the way of the board.

Medium laundry rooms ideas. Image by Mack Male

Spacious Rooms

The final one and the dream of every house owner: a large laundry room. The dimensions are 10 ft x 7ft, or 3 m x 2.2 m, enough to provide space for all laundry activities you can think of. This type of room allows you to choose any styles you want, even solo appliances. You might even fit in one more washer or dryer depending on your family size!

The best design for a spacious laundry room is the U-shape style, which offers most of the space in the center of the room to move and iron clothes easily.

However, a large space for laundry activities isn’t really necessary if you have a small family. Personally, a medium-sized washing room will be perfectly fine for a married couple and two children.

How to Optimize Your Washer and Dryer Space Requirements

Don’t feel so intimidating if you have a small laundry space. I’ll give you some tricks to use the area more efficiently regardless of size.

If you choose side-by-side pairs, the two appliances should open differently. It means the door of the machine on the left should swing to the left and vice versa. By positioning them like that, you make moving clothes from the washer to the dryer much easier without costing extra space.

Yet, if you go with the stacked pairs, both doors should open in the same direction. One more thing to consider, if you position the units next to a wall, the door should extend to the wall side. It can lean against the wall and consume no space at all.

Some Cautions When You Install The Washer And Dryer

This only takes a few minutes but will save you a lot of time and money, whether you call for a professional to install the units or you do it yourself. Here are the cautions for washer and dryer:

Washer

Electrical Connection: The cord for a washer is always included in the box, but you should prepare an extender. This is when you place the unit where it doesn’t have 120 volts grounded, 3-prong outlet within 6 feet.

Water Hoses: 

Every washer needs connecting to hot and cold water valves with water hoses. Some manufacturers don’t include them in the box, so ask the seller when you buy the machine. I seriously recommend not use old hoses from previous units, as these hoses degrade quite fast.

With just a few extra dollars, you can help your washer last longer by using a stainless-steel braided hose instead of the industry-standard rubber hoses.

Drain Hoses: 

What comes in must come out. Same as the water hoses, buy them from the seller to match your washer’s model if they are not provided in the box.

Dryer

There are two kinds of dryers, one using gas and one using electricity. I’ll go through both to give you a brief look at what you need to pay attention to.

Whether you use gas or electricity, both need ventilation and electrical connection. For the venting issue, you want to make sure that your home’s ventilation port is clean and matches the manufacturers’ specifications. Also, you’ll need a duct connector to run air from the dryer to the port. Both the duct and the port can be found as a combo in-store or online.

Regarding the electric cord, the gas dryer always comes with one (120 volts, 3-prong plug), but the electric dryer doesn’t. You’ll have to buy it separately, which is quite troublesome but can be an opportunity to get the correct one for your home configuration. Get a professional electrician to handle this unless you are confident with your knowledge.

An extra caution for the gas dryer is about the gas connection. You must purchase a metal, one-stop valve for the gas connector. The valve is usually pre-installed when the house was built, but buying a new one is the better option if your home has quite aged. Again, emphasis on safety is never enough.

Final Words

You have reached the end of the guide. Now, nothing can stand in your way, archiving the dream laundry room that you ever want. Once you’ve planned out the washer and dryer space requirements, what’s left is confidently choose your washer and dryer, then swipe the credit. How efficient you can use your area is now dependent on how creative you are.

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