laundry room location

jenathegreatFebruary 21, 2007

From an organizational point of view... would you prefer to have your washer and dryer in the garage or in a room that doubled as your kitchen pantry? No other options are available to me.

We have to have a drain replaced that goes under our slab foundation. So we can either leave the laundry facilities where they are (in the garage), or move them into a little nook off of the garage which could then be closed off from the garage and turned into a giant pantry with washer/dryer, food storage, and deep freeze all in one room and accessed via the kitchen.

Would it be a nightmare to drag laundry thru the kitchen?

Here is a link that might be useful: more details of my situation

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Our laundry closet is right next to the kitchen. I like having it so close because when I really get down to multi-tasking, I can start laundry, cook or do dishes, while things cook I can fold the laundry and then check on the cooking food.

I also have two small children, so being in the main part of the house while doing laundry is a big bonus.

With that said, if you have a small galley kitchen, it may be a hassle to have someone bringing laundry through the kitchen when someone else is cooking.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 10:51PM
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Absolutely in the kitchen! The kitchen table is the perfect place to fold laundry. Throwing in a load of laundry while making coffee in the morning, while preparing dinner in the evening is SO convenient. I hated having my laundry in the garage - it never felt clean. And, in Europe where homes are smaller, laundry in the kitchen pantry is the norm.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 10:54PM
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Given your two choices, I would pick "in a room that doubled as your kitchen pantry".... mainly because I do not know a single soul here who has their washer and dryer in a garage! (brrrrrr)

I guess that's another of those 'regional things".

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 8:29AM
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I would want them in the house--I hate the idea of taking my clean clothes out of the machine in my dirty garage. And I would want the freedom to leave my garage dirty.

And, if I want to put a load in, and I have my shoes off, I don't want to have to put them back on to go out on the dirty floor of the garage.

Also, especially if there are any steps to the garage--I would prefer not to have to carry baskets of clothes up and down steps. (Of course, if the bedrooms are upstairs, I'd still have that problem, but why make it worse than I have to, would be my philosophy)

My mom, when they were looking for their retirement house in Clive, IA, specifically wanted everything, including laundry, on one floor.

carrying laundry through the kitchen wouldn't bother me much. Even if someone did drag it through a small kitchen during meal prep, they go through and then OUT right away.

I know you're not planning to move, but the laundry/pantry area would be good at resale--for the same exact reason that YOU will enjoy it, I bet.

people want decent storage; they want room to handle the mechanics of homelife. This pantry-type nook would likely give you that.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 10:00AM
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Since basements are not the norm here, w/d in the garage is pretty common. I don't know of anyone who likes that arrangement, though.

What are your laundry habits? A load a day or waiting until you have 10 loads piled up? The load a day habit will work very well for the kitchen/pantry. The huge piler would do better with the garage set-up.

Another vote for the pantry.


    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 1:19PM
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(and if you're a "huge piler," is that perhaps BECAUSE you have the laundry in the garage? Might you find yourself better able to treat laundry as a "stream" to be "managed" if you found it easy to do more frequently?)

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 1:27PM
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I agree that in the house is way better than in the garage, and I speak from experience. But I do have a concern, although it may be unfounded. Don't the w/d give off a certain amount of moisture into the room where they operate? So, will the foods you have stored in the pantry be affected by the additional humidity? This may be a non-issue, someone with a similar set up can say. But if it is an issue, I'd probably build some kind of closet or walled section with folding doors or something like that within the pantry so that I could close off the W/D while in operation.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 2:14PM
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the moisture will travel through the folding doors. water is pretty pervasive.

If you think moisture will be a problem, you'd be better off installing a bathroom-style vent fan.

And the dryer's vent is where most of the moisture gets thrown off into the air as vapor; it'll vent outside.

As long as stuff is packaged air-tight in the pantry (which most of it should be anyway; once it's opened, like crackers or something, it'll come into the kitchen cabinets, probably?

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 3:14PM
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Wow, thanks for the great responses!

The house is one-story and the garage is attached, with only one tiny step down, so it's not super inconvenient to take laundry into the garage, but there's still that ick and dirt factor.

As for laundry habits, we tend to be pilers, but not huge pilers - we wash when the laundry sorter is getting full. And I say "we", but honestly DH does most of the laundry, and often while he helps me cook dinner, so it would be convenient for him.

lowspark, I was concerned about the extra humidity, but now that I've thought about it more, tons of people have in-house laundry rooms and even in humid Houston, there's not usually an issue of mold in the laundry room that I've heard of (or at least not from the extra humidity)

tally, the thought of resale did cross my mind, even if it will be years down the road - I know "walk-in pantry" and "in-house laundry room" were a + when I was looking at houses (not that I got them!). As for my opened food, no, I don't move it to a kitchen cabinet, all the original cabinets hold dishes and pots/pans. We did add a tall pull-out pantry which does hold some food, and we could certainly re-arrange what we keep where to keep the crackers and such away from the laundry.

Even though it will be a much bigger hassle to arrange (since I'll need an electrician for proper outlets and handyman to install a dryer vent) I am definitely leaning towards moving my washer and dryer so that we can make this pantry/laundry room down the road.

- Jena

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 4:31PM
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Are you in Houston?? So am I! So, you definitely want your W/D in the house. I had them in the garage in a couple of houses I've lived in, and it's such a pain to go in there to do laundry when it's hot out, which is most of the year. Getting hot clothes out of a hot dryer when it's 90 degrees and 90+ % humidity is a drag. When we were shopping for our current (and forever) house, one of the requirements on which I would not budge was an indoor utility room.

And being in Houston, I think you'll be ok as far as the humidity simply because you probably have your A/C running when it's hot/humid anyway so that cuts down on the humidity the W/D might emit.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 5:47PM
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I vote for near the kitchen. You'll love it. I've always had my laundry room off the kitchen, and it has been a joy for multitasking. I can hear what's going on - which cycle the washer is on, or whether it has decided to walk across the floor, etc. Recently had a big update to the kitchen-laundry area, and now the laundry room is as big as the kitchen (minus the area for the john). It's great!

    Bookmark   February 25, 2007 at 5:48PM
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I would absolutely hate to have the laundry room in the garage. One of my neighbors moved hers out there, but then she walled off the front of the garage so it's really a laundry room. Her situation is nice - much roomier than the house's original laundry arrangement.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2007 at 9:25PM
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I also vote for near the kitchen. I have it there now and it's very convenient. My dd has hers in the garage and you can't hear the buzzer when it's done. Besides, since she lives in San Antonio, it gets very hot in there in the summer.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2007 at 9:47PM
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I've had my W/D in the garage and no thanks, never again! And both times it was a one-story where the W/D was just outside the door. I much prefer having it indoors! Our current laundry room is off our kitchen and works perfectly.


    Bookmark   February 27, 2007 at 1:44AM
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In the kitchen. Ours was in the garage in the house we bought a couple of years ago (and we have a basement (basement garage)). It was in a little nook in the garage that was right off the finished space in the basement. We closed it up in the garage by adding a wall there and put a door in to the finished part of the basement. I hated it in the garage, it was cold in the winter and hot in the summer.

The house we had before had it in the kitchen (although it was only a small laundry "closet", but I used the overhead shelves for food storage. The house I grew up in had the same arrangement, over the W/D was our pantry.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 10:29AM
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I have had several houses with the laundry in the garage. Quite common in CA, along the coast. I currently have an indoor laundry closet. The only thing I don't like: there's no floor drain. My washer has overflowed twice which means 2 bedrooms across from the laundry got soaked (wood floors). Never had that problem with the laundry in the garage. So you might think about putting in a floor drain.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 3:43PM
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Well we've taken the plunge and the digging to reroute our laundry drain should start tomorrow!

Since this is just the first phase, the laundry room will still be in the garage, just moved to a nook that is just beyond the current kitchen pantry wall. But once this is done, it should be relatively easy to put up a little wall between the nook and the rest of the garage and to put a doorway where the kitchen pantry is now.

There won't be a floor drain, never occured to me since I've never had a washer overflow - but the good news is that the kitchen floor is tile and the pantry/laundry room will eventually have tile too, so there's nothing major to be ruined by some water.

Thanks everyone for all your input!


    Bookmark   March 21, 2007 at 12:38PM
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Jena, new here but I think you'll be happy with your decision. My mother must exit her house, walk thru the garage to the back and enter a seperate area for laundry. There is no direct access from the house. She was never comfortable with it, especially as she lives in a warm climate and liked to keep garage door up. She tolerated it while my father was alive. She is now alone and she feels very vulnerable. Unfortunately she is not in a position to make any changes.
As far as the floor drain, I never had one. We've lived in too many houses and apartments to count.
Enjoy your new space and let us know how you've organized it once you get thru the construction.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2007 at 4:16PM
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