washer/dryer in unheated area -longish, sorry!
I'm trying to relocate utility to my 2nd floor. I have outside stairs to a large porch/landing 10x8 or so and am toying with the idea of enclosing that space for the utility. It would also hold the freezer. When I posted in remodeling forum, they raised the worry of frozen pipes in a room with no enclosure below; however, I could enclose and insulate the area below; maybe even put a water tank there for w/d, as the other is at the opposite end of the house. I heat mostly with woodstove (heat would NOT reach the utility from the woodstove), with axillary electric baseboard in every room, so would install some kind of wall heater in the new space. But I am worried about power outages and the plumbing freezing. (I live in Pac NW, so not ultra frigid here, but most winters have a short spell of 5-20 degree cold. My current utility is in main part of house, but the plumbing is on outside wall and have had no problems, even with extended power outages. But I am here to build fires at least some part of each day.
My questions are: Could this kind of space be planned to minimize the chance of frozen pipes if the power was off? Could the ambient heat loss from the water tank be enough to prevent freezing for a while (usually the power is on again within a day or 2)? Are there any plumbing methods that could be self draining when off that would minimize water in the pipes to the washer? Could the system be designed so I could drain it before I left in the winter, just in case? Etc. Any other things I could consider?
thank you for anything you can suggest.