It’s hard not to have a little design envy when you see a DIYer tackle their latest renovation project through a TikTok time-lapse. And while kitchen and bathroom upgrades make for great before-and-afters, we find laundry room makeovers a little more satisfying.
Some creators focus on adding a pop of color or an interesting print on their walls, but others focus on improving efficiency by upgrading appliances. Every home is different, so we put together a list of key considerations to make before investing in a new washer and dryer.
Before you start shopping, it’s important to figure out what exactly you’re shopping for by:
- Deciding What to Upgrade: There’s no rule book that says a laundry room makeover should involve a total appliance overhaul. You may choose to only upgrade your washer or dryer, not both. There have been some impressive innovations in the laundry appliance space, but a machine that boasts all the bells and whistles won’t necessarily make a dent in your laundry day routine. Focus on features that you know you would use, like settings for cleaning pet beds and energy efficiency ratings, as well as overall machine capacity.
- Taking Measurements: We’re big believers in measuring twice to buy once. Home appliances have different footprints depending on a variety of factors, so knowing exactly what space you have available will be key to avoid a bulky return. You’ll also want to take into consideration the space needed to open the machine doors, attach and properly operate connections like the water hookups and vents, and a buffer for noise reduction and air circulation.
- Checking Your Connections: If your space has never had a proper laundry room with washer and dryer, you’ll want to make sure you have the right setup. At a minimum, you’ll want hookups for cold and hot water, a drain connection (the type will depend on where you’re installing your machine), an outlet with a 120-volt connection for the washer and typically a 240-volt connection for your dryer.
Even the most seemingly simple washers and dryers on the market today are loaded with technology. Some come equipped with WiFi, while others have pedestal wash basins in addition to the main drum to maximize washing capacity. Before you decide what frills you might fancy, you’ll want to understand the basics.
Choosing between a front- or top-loading machine will help narrow down your options. While a front-load washer will allow you to consider stackable washer and dryer options, it also means more kneeling, and less space than a top-load machine. Front-load washers tend to have a more modern look, and many are outfitted with features like steam sanitation and pedestal washer compatibility. Some top-loading machines are already equipped to do dual washes without the addition of a pedestal. If space isn’t the issue, budget may be the determining factor, with top-loaders typically running less expensive than their front-loading cousins.
If space is truly at a premium, but budget is flexible, you may consider the lesser-known all-in-one machine, which combines the washer and dryer into a single unit. These options are typically ventless, eliminating the need for additional ductwork to vent the machines to the outdoors.
Once you’ve settled on your appliances and their setup, you can finalize the finishing touches of your laundry room makeover. Things like storage solutions for laundry baskets, a fresh coat of paint (or fun new wallpaper!), or wall art can add a lot more personality to your space without breaking the bank.