Laundry rooms rule. If you have the luxury of space, laundry rooms can be more than places to clean clothes; they can be welcoming, accessible places for more activities, such as caring for pets, sewing, doing DIY projects, wrapping packages, starting seedlings and more. Planning your next laundry renovations? Hitch Property Constructions has you covered!
Laundry rooms are utility rooms designed for washing clothing with adequate space for laundry machines and additional ancillary areas for laundry storage and organization. Typically found in households, laundry rooms are often equipped with a washing machine and clothes dryer commonly arranged either side-by-side or stacked with the dryer on top of the washing machine. Depending on the layout and the available floor area, laundry rooms typically include an additional sink, ironing board, storage cabinets, and countertops for folding clean clothing.
Until recently, the laundry room has been one of the most overlooked areas of the house. Because the room isn’t used to entertain guests, many homeowners have neglected the space’s design, opting instead for more function. Surveys suggest we spend an average of eight hours a week on laundry tasks. Any room that sees that much work needs a functional layout along with an aesthetic design you love.
The Primary Areas and Functions
Having the right amount of space for your laundry room is only the first step to creating a space you love to use. To make the room functional, you need to know how you will use it. Most laundry rooms are divided into three main areas (kind of like the zones in your kitchen):
- Entry and prep. Install a laundry sink near the entrance so you can sort, apply fabric treatments and soak stains if necessary.
- Washing. It is good to have a countertop to place your sorted loads before putting them in the washing machine.
- Drying. You’ll also want another section of countertop for items that need to be line dried, as well as space to fold dried laundry.
- Storage and ironing. Make sure you have enough room for a folded ironing board, which measures about 14 inches wide, 60 inches long and 3 inches thick (36 by 152 by 7 centimetres).
- Nice extras. Of course, some people with large spaces want to use their laundry room as a craft or sewing area, mudroom or dog washing station. These are very specific to each of us; planning spaces with a little extra room for these functions lets individual habits dictate their use.
The dirty area of your laundry room should contain hampers for dirty clothes, space for sorting clothes, countertops for treating stains, a sink for washing out colours or washing hands and, of course, your washing machine. By positioning the sink near your washing machine, you can transfer clothes you’ve treated for stains directly into the washer without dripping water over your clean clothes.
Your clean area includes your dryer along with space for clean clothes baskets, hanging Perma press or drip-dry clothing and easy access to your workspace.
The laundry process’s final step is usually the one left out of most laundry rooms: the workspace. Adding an extra counter and space for an ironing board allows you to keep all your laundry in one place. You can fold clothes on a clean, hard surface right out of the dryer, saving you time and preventing wrinkles in your clothes.
According to the National Association of HomeBuilders, the average laundry room takes up 3.7% of your home’s square footage. For a 3,000 square foot home, that translates into approximately 111 square feet. The actual average size for 3,000 square foot homes and larger is 145 square feet.
With all these functions and processes in mind, consider your laundry room’s layout to make this process easier. Most washer/dryer sets will need around 60″ of linear space to quickly move them in and out for repair or replacement. This amount of space will also allow you to open your washer and dryer doors all the way. Adding 18-36 inches of space on either side of the washer and dryer will give you room for cabinets and counter space to manage both your dirty and clean clothes. You may be able to use this space next to the washer to add a sink. Another option is to create an L shaped design by adding more cabinets and a sink on the wall next to the washer. In all, you’re looking at needing 8-12 feet of wall space where you’ll place your washer and dryer.
Now that you’ve laid out the length of the room let’s talk about width. You’ll need at least 42 inches of space between the front of your washer and dryer and the wall or cabinets on the other side of the room. This allows you to open your washer and dryer and walk around the doors quickly. The depth of appliances varies between 32 and 35 inches. A minimum laundry room width would be about 6 ½ feet–if you aren’t adding cabinets to the opposing wall. To add cabinets and countertops for extra storage and workspace, you’ll need another 24 inches in width, at least making your room closer to 8 ½ feet wide.
Like kitchen cabinets, standard laundry room cabinets have a depth of 24 inches (61 centimetres) for the base and 12 inches (30 centimetres) for the upper.
Widths are standard, beginning at 9 inches (23 centimetres) and going all the way up to 48 inches (122 centimetres) in increments of 3 inches (8 centimetres) for most prebuilt cabinets. You can get any width with custom-made cabinets, but you will save money even with custom-built units if you stay with the standards.
Base cabinets are designed to have a countertop that’s 36 inches (91 centimetres) high. The height of the upper cabinets will depend on your ceiling height and how far you can reach. Positioning them at least 18 inches (46 centimetres) above countertops is standard, while 24 to 42 inches (61 to 107 centimetres) in 6-inch (15-centimetre) increments commonly defines the height of the wall cabinet itself.
Allow at least 42 inches (107 centimetres) of width between opposing cabinets and walls. Washers and dryers placed side by side are typically designed to fit within 60 inches (152 centimetres) of width, but some manufacturers make more compact machines.
All the Extras
For a 3,000 square foot house, an 8.5 foot by 12-foot laundry room is still a bit on the conservative side but would certainly give you room for the laundry basics. As you make plans for a laundry room that meets all your needs, consider how you might use the room more fully:
- Add desk space to include a home office or homework space
- Use additional counter space for gift-wrapping or crafting
- Build out closets for storing mops, brooms, sports equipment and household cleaners
- Add a shower to easily wash off the mud from yard work or outside play or for washing family pets
- Combine your laundry room with a mudroom for corralling your family’s shoes, bags, sports equipment and more
- Add a television for entertainment while you fold or iron your clothes
- Include a window so you can enjoy the exterior of your home while you’re working
When you begin to decorate your home, don’t forget this room you’ve worked so hard to layout just right. Include an unusual light fixture or chandelier to dress the room up a little. Use the same quality materials in your laundry room as you used throughout your house, like tile floors and solid surface countertops.
Every family uses their laundry space differently. Where the room is located in the house also dictates how the room may be used. As you begin your remodel or new home construction plans, make sure we discuss your laundry room plans as we talk about what you want from your kitchen and bathrooms. It will be one of the most used rooms in your house. Make sure it works the way you need it to work. Check out a wide range of laundry renovations Melbourne services at Hitch Property Constructions.
Laundry appliance dimensions
So let’s get started with laundry appliance dimensions. There must be a story behind why this is. If you know what it is, please let me know! Are you ready with your measuring tape?
To figure out space, you need to house your appliances, find out the dimensions of your laundry appliances and add a little ‘wiggle’ room.
The wiggle room is essential so that your washing machine and tumble dryer can be changed or repaired without too much disruption. The wiggle room can be mostly in the vertical direction, which allows the appliances to be wobbled out forwards and backwards, up and down, rather than side to side.
Laundry appliances in Australia
A mix of brands from both North America and Europe is available in Australia – pick your appliances and measure! Laundry room dimensions and floor plans.
First of all, there are a few explanations to get out of the way.
- For each layout option, there are two versions – one for European appliance sizes, one for US appliance sizes.
- All appliances are shown as a symbol which includes wiggle room.
- European size including wiggle room (w – 60, h – 90, d – 60cm)
- Larger US / Canada size including wiggle room (w – 30, h – 39, d – 33ins)
- All dimensions refer to internal dimensions.
- The dotted lines refer to hanging bars for drying.
- The distance between runs of units in a laundry should be 48 inches (122cm).
Laundry closet and transitional laundry room dimensions
First, let’s start with laundry closets which is another way of saying laundry room layouts with everything along one wall. So you could use these layouts in a closet or a transitional laundry room. We’ll look at several different widths for both European and North American sized appliances.
If you’re going to go the laundry closet route think carefully about the depth of your closet. If the plan is to use the back of the doors for storage, the cupboard would need to be made deeper to accommodate the hold on the inside of the door. And yes, you’d only be able to do this if you had to swing rather than the folding doors.
The appliances in the US / Canada are slightly broader, deeper and higher than a standard 2ft kitchen unit. The layout on the right above shows two machines stacked, one on top of the other. If you want to go for a stacked arrangement with North American sized appliances, it may be better to buy a single unit with one unit above the other and all sold together. These tend to be smaller. Reaching up to the tumble dryer might be an issue with using two larger appliances.
The laundry appliances in Europe fit in with the standard kitchen unit sizes. Moving on to 3 unit wide laundry layouts, which offer more storage, drying space and folding space.
Laundry room dimensions
It gets a bit annoying when looking at interior design pictures of laundry room design ideas. You can’t get a real sense of how the laundry room will work in real life because you can’t see the whole room most of the time.
Small laundry rooms
- Small laundry room dimensions – 6ft 6ins x 7ft – sized for North American appliances
- Small laundry room dimensions – 6 x 6ft – sized for European appliances
These small laundry rooms are home to a stacked washer and dryer and sink with plenty of space for folding, storage and drying. I think the drying rack would be best built to full height so you can fit at least one load of laundry in there for drying. Ironing in here would be a squash and a squeeze, but the ironing board could be stored on a bracket on the wall or maybe inside the drying cupboard. This small room would work best with a pocket door or door opening outwards.
Midsize laundry rooms
- Midsize laundry room dimensions – 6ft 6ins x 9ft – sized for North American appliances
- Midsize laundry room dimensions – 6 x 8ft – sized for European appliances
These midsize galley laundry rooms have the appliances placed side by side with a sink. There’s a large drying rack that could dry multiple loads and plentiful storage and folding space. There would be room to iron in this laundry room. The door to the room could work swinging inwards, but that would make it tight to fit an ironing board inside and open and close the door.
Large Laundry rooms
- laundry room US 10 x 7.5ft
- Laundry room European 10x7ft
These large you shaped laundry rooms feature one wall with half depth cabinets. Full-depth cabinets on the bottom wall could be accommodated if the room’s width is extended by 1ft. There’s plenty of room for all the laundry room activities, including ironing.
Think about door swings in the design process
The direction of the door swing
Find out whether or not the door swing on your appliances can be changed. Check both the washer and the dryer because, for some brands, one can be adjusted, but the other can’t.
The standard is that the washer door hinges on the left and the dryer door hinges on the right. This allows for laundry to be passed quickly from one to the other when they are placed side by side WD. If they’re stacked, it makes sense to have both of the doors swing the same way.
Range of door swing
If your appliances are going to be placed next to a wall, the ideal is for the hinges to be on the wall side so that the door can swing back against the wall. However, make sure the door will open adequately to easily allow laundry to be placed in and quickly taken out of the appliance. It might be a bit of a toss-up for which way the door swing works best.
Height of door swing
For front loaders, find out how high up off the floor the door swing is. That way, you can purchase hampers or baskets that will fit underneath the appliances and allow the door to be opened and closed. I guess it’s not a big deal to move the basket or hamper to open or close the washing machine or dryer, but every little reduction in moving this here and there makes things flow more smoothly.
Don’t make the laundry door too small!
Although the laundry is a small room, don’t be tempted to make the door too small because you’ve got to be able to get the laundry appliances in and out of there—30 inches at a minimum. And you’ll need about 45 inches to clear a 90 degree turn comfortably with a large washing machine or tumble dryer.
Laundry Room Common Questions
What factors should be considered when designing a laundry room layout?
The laundry should be designed to consider the amount of space needed to hold several items for completing tasks. For that amount of required margin to increase when the cycle of cleaning is in rotation. These items include the washer/dryer units as mentioned, a countertop, clothes, baskets, cleaning supplies, an ironing board, and more. Appropriate lighting and ventilation should be considered, as well.
Where is the best place to locate a laundry room sink?
The best place to locate a laundry room sink depends on the user’s preference, but the washer/dryer unit along with the sink is often found in a row with the sink positioned closest to the door. If part of a counter, it is best for the sink to be installed on either the left or right rather than the centre to increase countertop space for folding.
How do you design a small laundry room?
It is essential to make efficient use of the available space when designing a small laundry room. Shelving for storage can be wall-mounted, and drying racks can hang down from the ceiling. If not enough or any surface/counter space, a fold-up folding station can be installed. Pedestal drawers can be positioned under washer/dryer units, and more storage can be placed on the back of the door. We have a wide range of Melbourne laundry renovations services at Hitch Property Constructions.