Doing Laundry in your RV

Hitting the open road in your RV to a beautiful or exciting destination is an unparalleled experience. Having all the comforts of a home inside of a moving vehicle makes road trips even more exciting. After all, having the ability to cook and shower within one unit is pretty convenient and more affordable than a hotel or rental. Doing laundry in your RV is an even more special luxury that helps convince many folks to make their RV purchase. Needing to pack tons of extra clothes to avoid a costly, cramped laundromat is a solution of the past. Now there are tons of washers and dryers that are either made for RVs or are able to comfortably fit inside a small space. Read on as we cover several types of washers and dryers that can work in an RV, along with their pros and cons.

Photo credit: RV Zone

Types

As with most appliances and RV accessories, washer and dryers come in all sorts of types, shapes, and sizes. While there are special washer and dryer brands made for RVing, almost any type can work in an RV as long as they are installed correctly. 

Photo credit: Faith Takes Flight

Combo

Washer and dryer combination appliances are what most people think of with RV washer and dryers. These nifty appliances are a washer and dryer all in one, meaning, that you put your load of laundry in, choose your settings, and it will present you with a washed and dried load of laundry. Splendide is one of the leading manufacturers of washer and dryer combos. 

Pros

  • Only one step needed to wash and dry laundry
  • Compact as only one unit

Cons

  • Uses more water than separate units
  • Very heavy
  • Usually very expensive
  • Small capacity
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Stackable

Similar to stacked washers and dryers found in a home or apartment, these compact setups can be great for utilizing vertical space, as opposed to floor space. Some smaller models only stand sixty inches high when stacked. These washers and dryers are built two separate units that are meant to be safely stacked. Be sure these are mounted properly in your RV since you’ll be driving your home down the road at some point!

Pros

  • Larger capacity than the combo models
  • Uses vertical space instead of floor space
  • Most models use less electricity and water than standard models

Cons

  • Still a smaller capacity than standard units
  • Needs to be anchored and mounted correctly or damage can occur
  • If not installed correctly, they can be easily damaged and break
  • Can be expensive
Photo credit: RV LIFE

Compact Portable

Also called “mini washer and dryers”, these units are the smallest ones on our list. They do not hook up to water or drainage, but need to be handled manually. With these models, the washer needs to be filled with water and then the drainage line needs to be emptied. 

Pros

  • Very space-saving
  • Eco-conscious
  • Most affordable on our list

Cons

  • Need to be manually drained unless a permanent fix is installed
  • Small size machine = smaller loads
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Standard

If your RV is large enough, you can even use a full-size standard washer and dryer. These will require all of the same precautions taken at home, such as ventilation and drainage, but also need to be mounted or secured into place. As many know, built-up dryer lint is a fire hazard, so consider switching to a ventless dryer for the safest option.

Pros

  • Largest capacities mean less loads of laundry to do
  • You get what you pay for. No additional costs for RV frills or accommodations

Cons

  • Very large and will not work in all RVs
  • Dryers need to be properly vented to avoid a fire
  • Heavy
Photo credit: RVBlogger

Additional Considerations

For most weekend warriors or part-timers, owning a washer and dryer is a no-brainer. The ability to not need to leave the comfort of your RV at a campground to do laundry is coveted. However, folks who don’t use their RV a whole lot may pass on needing one. After all, if you’re only using it a few weeks per year, you can easily just come home and do your laundry. Boondockers at Harvest Hosts locations may not be able to take advantage of using a washer and dryer without constant access to hookups. After all, these appliances use plenty of electricity, water, and gray tank space. 

Photo credit: THE ROADS WE ROAM

RVing as a whole continues to soar in popularity, so naturally RV product manufacturers are running to keep up. All appliance brands, whether made for RVs or not, are looking for ways to stay competitive with their sizing, pricing, and flexibility. Who knows what new types of washers and dryers will hit the market in the future. Could there be an even better solution than the ones above? Only time will tell!

Photo credit: Smart RVing

Does your RV have a washer and dryer? Which type do you use or prefer? Tell us about it in the comments below!

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  1. Sandra
    17th March, 2022

    We use a stack model and were just saying this morning how great it is to have the convenience of doing laundry when we want and in our own machine! Saves time and money..mostly time!