Washing Machine Hookup

sirraf69July 27, 2014

We are building a new home and my wife wants the washer/dryer on the exterior wall. I've read that's not a good idea due to cold weather and pipes. Is it possible to place the washer/dryer on the exterior wall and place the hookups on the interior wall? I have attached a photo to give you an idea. How far can you extend water lines and drain line? Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks

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My washer and dryer are on an outside wall - great for the dryer exhaust.

The washer water connections and drain are on the inside wall about 18" from the outside wall.

Never a problem here in the MD suburbs of DC.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 4:41PM
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Having the supply/drain pipes in an outside wall MIGHT be a bad idea if you have an older house (i.e. wall cavities ventilated to the outside) or live in a particularly cold climate where freezing pipes is a legitimate concern. Washer supply and drain lines are simply flexible hoses, so as long as you have a few inches of clearance, routing them to the side of machine for hookups really works exactly like routing them behind for hookups.

Check with your builder to see what they recommend and regarding the wall cavity construction. You could always apply spray foam to the walls in that room to keep the pipes temperature fluctuations down.


    Bookmark   July 28, 2014 at 9:33AM
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What is your general location? (how cold does it get?).

The truth is that you can put plumbing on the outside wall if you are careful about it. The plumbing should be located close to the interior wall surface with plenty of insulation between the plumbing and the exterior and none between the plumbing and the interior.

I use 2" of Rmax board (have to layer it) in the stud space between the plumbing and the exterior to give me an R12 (plus whatever's on the outside). I make sure the RMax fits snug and then I foam the edges with a can of foam sealant. You should also put RMax or fiberglass in the open space between the sides of the studs and the plumbing to prevent the cold that's being conducted through the studs from getting to the pipes. I haven't had that freeze even down to -15 F.

You also have to watch where the plumbing comes through the joist space and make sure that's well insulated between the outside and the plumbing.

Pex supply lines are less susceptible to freeze damage also.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2014 at 9:42AM
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