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Washer Dryer cabinet install?

mattt19's picture

I'm trying to figure out how to install a washer dryer in a cabinet. I'm redoing my kitchen - the washer dryer will be side by side under a countertop. I'd like to install doors on the front of the cabinet to hide the appliance. I'm running into two problems. The first is - each door will be about 30" wide. Secondly, depth wise I have a maximum of 32" to work with. Subtracting 1" for the countertop over hang and 3/4" for the cabinets (face frame, inset ) I'm left with 30 1/4" for the washer dryer and hook ups. The washer is 27.75" deep and the dryer is 28.5" deep. The architect I'm working with claims that I need 5" clearance behind the appliances for hookups. The appliance manuals show 0" clearance needed.
has anyone here placed these appliances in a cabinet behind doors? Is rear clearance an issue? The dryer is on an exterior wall. Could it vent straight out the wall from the back of the machine? If the washing machine outlet box is installed flush with the wall how much clearance is needed to hook the hoses up?

Thanks

(post #86473, reply #1 of 11)

For the dryer, the largest portion of the space needed in the back, is for the vent hookup. But most dryers have the ability to have the vent go down through the floor, rather than to the back.

That would solve the issue for the dryer -- kinda. All that is left is either the electric, or the gas and electric.(but read on)

The washer is likely to be less of a problem -- so long as you have a recessed plumbing hookup "station".

But here's the really big question:

Once you build the cabinet, and the countertop is in place........

How ya gonna make those hookups? You won't be able to reach behind the washer to hook up the hoses, and you won't be able to reach behind (or under) the dryer.

It seems to me that what you intend to do is impossible, unless the cabinet is built to be broken down (including countertop removal) any time there is a repair or replacement issue. Or, for that matter, anytime the dryer vent gets plugged.

Good luck.

Politics is the antithesis of problem solving.
. . . I can't live proud enough to die when I'm gone, So I guess I'll have to do it while I'm here. (Phil Ochs)

(post #86473, reply #4 of 11)

Couldn't the washing machine be installed similar to a dishwasher? How is a dish washer hooked up? Isn't the plumbing run into an adjacent cabinet? Is there any reason i couldn't do this?. That way I could disconnect the washing machine, move it out and have access to the dryer. For the dryer vent I'd use a flex vent straight out the back of the machine. Sound possible?

(post #86473, reply #7 of 11)

Most washing machines don't have a removable toe kick.

However, some brands (eg, the traditional Maytags) DO have a front that can be removed with the unit still in place. So someone might be able to arrange something -- if one was willing to limit the types of units that could be used.


The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. -John Kenneth Galbraith


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

(post #86473, reply #8 of 11)

>>"How is a dish washer hooked up?"

All "built-in" dishwashers have a chase built in to the underside, so that the electric and water lines can be run, and so that the installer can make the connections.

Clothes washers have no such chase -- there is no "tunnel" through which to run the hoses and wires.

Dryers are the same.

So, I ask once again....... Once the first appliance is installed, how will you install the second?

Politics is the antithesis of problem solving.
. . . I can't live proud enough to die when I'm gone, So I guess I'll have to do it while I'm here. (Phil Ochs)

(post #86473, reply #9 of 11)

Virtually every washer or dryer I've installed or worked on has a tag indication clearances and ventilation requirements, all of which would not be met by the enclosure you are talking about. I believe the access problems could be worked out by your suggestions or some of the others.

(post #86473, reply #2 of 11)

If ya gotta put some lipstick on the pig, put the money into prettier appliances.


 

(post #86473, reply #3 of 11)

As stated, the dryer can vent directly out the back or, in some cases, through the floor. There are also a few models that can vent through one side. So the dryer you can in theory get down to about 1" clearance -- just enough for the dryer cord (assuming electric).

The washer needs about 2" for the drain hose.

Just brainstorming here, but I wonder if you could set up the units on some sort of sliding base (that could be solidly locked in place to prevent "jiggle"). Have enough flex in the hoses for the water/drain connections, and have some sort of self-connecting arrangement for the vent.

Of course, the ideal option would be to back the units up to a wall with an access panel on the other side.


The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. -John Kenneth Galbraith


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

(post #86473, reply #5 of 11)

I think insisting on hiding the appliances behind doors is going to cause no end of problems as described in earlier posts.  I don't think they look so bad exposed - here's a kitchen I did a few years ago ... there's a 5 inch space between the washer and dryer which allows the dryer to vent out the side and down through the floor.  Both slide in and out easily for access.  There's a filler strip covering the five inch space screwed top and bottom that comes out easily.


Sorry for the picture size ...


 

(post #86473, reply #6 of 11)

I'm hammering out a design to do this as well.

The laundry room is a pass through from Kitchen to Dining room and client wants to use it a buffet/serving area when she entertains.

The washer box is above counter height.

So far my plan is for the counter stop 4" from the rear wall.

Between the upper cabinets and the counter I will install some sliding panels to conceal the connections but allow quick easy access should a disaster occur.

Below the counter, the dryer and washer will each have two flipper doors (15 to 17" wide) so that she can hide the appliances. The center panel will not go all the way to the back wall either, hopefully so the dryer can be hooked up from the washer space and then slide the washer in with it hook up above the counter.

Bottom rail will be removable so the bottoms of the doors are 4" off the floor.

Clear as mud?

The Bosch units she is looking at have a left side discharge option for the dryer venting.

TFB (Bill)
TFB (Bill)

(post #86473, reply #10 of 11)

I wonder if you could build a backless cabinet that slides into place over the appliances? Do the hookups, push the appliances into place and slide the cabinet into place over them. Reverse the operations for service.

(post #86473, reply #11 of 11)

Thanks for all the suggestions - it looks possible to do this, but I've been done in by the washer. Once the machine is in the cabinet, and you account for the needed setback from the back of the door and the thickness of the cabinet and countertop overhang the washing machine soap dish is inaccessible. The soap dish sticks out 5". Once the above is taken into account only 2" of the drawer is accessible, making it a challenge to put the detergent in.