Anyone done this? Cabinet doors in front of washer and dryer?

nomafinneyOctober 16, 2010

My laundry room is open to my kitchen with just a door casing between and is actually a passageway (due to earlier addition). I have a front loading washer and dryer (nice looking silver-dust color). I plan to put a counter top over and have nice cabinets built to match our new kitchen cabinets. I was considering bifold type cabinet doors in front of the washer and dryer, but I'm thinking now that may not be a good idea. Does anyone else have any doors in front of their washer and dryer? If so, would you recommend it? Also, if you have a countertop on top of your washer and dryer how do you deal with the deep countertop to make it not look so HUGE? I was thinking about having some appliance garages built in the back to minimize the depth. Has anyone else done this?

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I am exploring doors that open in the middle of the side-by-side set and slide back into the cabinet. The cabinet above our refrigerator has this type of doors. Our TV is stored in this cabinet and it is very convenient to open the door and slide it back into the cabinet (on the side).

Here is a link that might be useful: Cabinet photo

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 11:06PM
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Thanks so much. I like that idea and I think that might just be the solution. That way they would be out of the way when I'm doing laundry.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 11:32PM
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hi nollie...

I'm not sure if this is what you're referring to...but here is my sister's newly remodeled kitchen. The washer and dryer are behind the white doors. They used to be out in the open, so she was thrilled when the kitchen designer enclosed it this way.


    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 12:27AM
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I love having the huge counter over the washer and dryer.
It is the perfect folding spot. With our reno, I went from
having a hall closet laundry spot to having a full room. I
love it. We have storage for 2 laundry baskets under one
end of the counter. I had them build in a shallow shelf to
hold hangers that are used for the drip dry area above the

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 6:47AM
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Here are some of my saved pictures. I am converting my laundry closet area into more of an open laundry area that is dressed up a little.

Here are my saved pictures. Sorry I don't have any way to give credit to the photos. I got them from google searches for laundry nook or laundry cabinet.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 12:26PM
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I love cleo's saved pics but then think about the function and practicality and realize, for me, this would be a PITA - constant competing bumping doors - not to mention getting to the machines for service or cleaning out the duct work for the dryer

If you have an actual room with casement opening (as described) - it would be very easy to just install a door that matches the rest of your interior doors - no need for bifold & no laundry exposure

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 1:10PM
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Thanks for all your responses! I'm new to Garden Web, but so far it has been very helpful!

Kitchenaddict - This isn't what I had in mind, but after seeing that picture I am taking that into consideration.

Donnie - Your laundry area looks very nice. That is granite on the countertop, correct? Someone recommended that I have a removable countertop (laminate so it would weigh less) to make servicing the applicances and turning off the water supply to them easier.

Cleo - I don't have your saved pictures already, but these are EXACTLY what I've had in mind. This look would be awesome in my situation. It just seems that when I've been playing with large pieces of cardboard this weekend, I'm afraid that since the countertop is going have to be deeper for the doors that I'm going to have problems getting to the drawers for the detergent, etc and the controls for the machines.... I also wonder about accessing the machines for service. Not too sure how practical this set-up would be. It also looks like these pictures as well as mine have "fake" back wall t

One thing I've had in mind that would be shot down if I installed the full-size bifold doors and make the area a "closet", is that I have been planning to put my countertop microwave/convection oven and possibly our two coffepots on the countertop in this area. Sort of make it a butler's pantry especially since our pantry is a closet with similiar doors on the opposite wall. I was also going to use it as extra countertop space for food service for holiday dinners etc.

Well, I have to let my cabinet builder know what I want SOON and I also have to let my builder (a friend of ours) know by Tuesday since he needs to finish up on wall mods.

Decisions, decisions.....

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 2:16PM
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You can pull your machines forward to access the controls if that is a worry.

Found some more...

I think this is what you may have in mind with building a closet to house everything. . Notice the pocket doors which really would open up the space so it would not seem like you are serving food in your closet. Plus it would be way cheaper to build this than pay for tons of cabinetry.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 4:48PM
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Thanks Cleo. I actually already have the middle picture (with the rooster) and have already given it to my cabinet builder. I just love that look. I'm just afraid that I will have problems with putting in the detergent, etc and will sacrifice functionality. Thanks again!

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 8:19PM
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We put bi-fold doors into our old house (sorry no pictures). I would do that again in a heartbeat. The thing about the bifold doors is that you can set the entire area up to be a small laundry room. We had a folding ironing board on one side above the dryer and a hanging drying rack above the washer (hanging sweaters need somewhere to go and behind the bifolds was great). The other thing I really liked is that I had space for the detergent, softeners, bleach, starch, iron . . . you get the idea. As these things aren't always the same size it was nice to have a shelf to rest them on without worrrying about cabinet sizes changing. Oh, and I also wonder if putting your washer/dryer under a fixed counter would limit your machine choices in the future. It seems like many machines are now changing heights and/or loading options from front to top.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 9:11PM
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Do you have to leave the doors open to let the machines "breathe" while they are on? I think that might be a good reason for the curtained look..... My machines run often and so we'd need to not block them off in a small cabinet for hours at a time.

I bought large LG front loaders that were meant to stack and will move them up into our main level when we extend and will finally stack them as intended. They are currently in our bsmt in a laundry room with low ceilings and pipes. The controls for the dryer can be used in the top of the front when not stacked and move to the bottom when they are stacked so there will be no awkward reach. If you did a configuration like that, then you could have more room for storage down low.

We will house them in a large walk in type hall closet with a barn door that will slide out of the way when we access the room. It should be easier construction than a pocket door and easier to slide open or closed.

Just a side note, but a friend and I were talking about folding laundry yesterday and she and I both could not understand folding laundry in a laundry room. I usually fold mine in the living room while watching tv and use the coffee table, couch and loveseat as my surfaces. I sometimes switch to the master bedroom to watch tv and then fold on the bed. It forces you to put laundry right away and you are entertained while doing a tedious chore. When we add on our den, I will make sure to get an even larger coffee table which would be better for folding ;) With 2 sons and a husband who is active in sports, we go through a lot of laundry and I'd feel like I was in a prison cell if I was stuck in a small spaces for the time it would take to fold. I also have lots of room to spread out and fold into categories for everyone's clothes....

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 12:01AM
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Missmuffet - You have a good point about the countertop and machines in the future. I think I'll just have to cross that bridge later though... I seriously considered the bifold doors yesterday, but my husband and I agree that won't work for us.

dinaolo - I was actually thinking late last night about the curtain look myself. It would allow me to not extend the countertop as far (allowing easier access of controls) since the fabric would flow over the fronts of my machines which extend out a bit. I also like to leave the washer door cracked open after using so it will air out. I just have to find the "right" fabric. Of course, if I'm not happy with this look it will be much easier to just remove the curtains and let the front of my appliances show. I also agree about folding laundry. I plan to use the countertops more for kitchen usage - such as unloading groceries.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 9:48AM
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I've even seen the W&D in a dining room as the bottom part of a buffet on an HGTV show -- looked great and you'd never know they were there. It wouldn't bother me to have the doors open while the machines are running if the doors can be out of the way. What I would wonder about is leaving the washer door open to let it dry out between laundry days so you don't get mildew in them. My washer door swings open and can only be left cracked if I use something to rig a catch for it. That probably varies with the model, but you'd need to have room to leave the door cracked if you run it often or those doors would wind up only closing for company.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 10:50AM
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Nollie -- Hold on to your thought about needing to keep your washer door cracked to air it out. The curtains or perhaps a louvered door set far enough away would allow that. We've found this is a real necessity with the front load washers. Because we use the washer nearly every day, we have to have the door open a bit almost all the time, when not in use.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 1:29PM
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I leave my washer door open to air out too, so the open front is good for us. The top is a leathered granite and if I need to access the washer or dryer for repair, I will pull them forward. I enjoy folding my clothes on the big counter. We have 4 windows in the laundry room so it's bright and airy. I think it's easier to fold on a hard surface and I like to fold things as soon as they come out of the dryer. The room is large enough and light enough that I do not feel claustrophobic in there.

This is what we did for the cabinet adjacent to the W/D. I love it because 2 full laundry baskets can slide in on the floor into it, so I can quickly spruce things up. The little shelf on top holds the hangers for drip drying clothes...that way I don't have to see them hanging out all of the time.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 1:47PM
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