Laundry centers are one of the newest innovations in washer and dryer technology. Unlike a stackable washer and dryer, a laundry center combines both appliances in one, placing the controls in between the sections. But is a laundry center the right choice for you? There are a lot of reasons to consider getting a laundry center for your home, and the experts at Appliances Connection have compiled them here. We've also listed a few negative aspects of laundry centers, allowing you to make a fully informed decision.
Pros of Laundry Centers
Mixed Configurations Reduce Lifting and Bending
A traditional stacked washer and dryer is a combination of two front-loading appliances: this means that you have to contend with side-swinging or drop-down doors, which can be difficult to operate in small spaces. By combining a top-loading washer with a dryer (which is front-loading by design), a laundry center greatly reduces the amount of lifting and bending you must do on laundry day. Frigidaire offers both gas and electric laundry centers with corrosion-resistant stainless steel drums and a large variety of wash and dry settings.
Space-Saving Design Is Great for Smaller Rooms
Similar to a stackable washer and dryer pair, a laundry center allows you to combine the footprint of both the washer and the dryer, fitting your laundry needs into an overall smaller space. This is particularly useful if you live in an apartment or a condo, where you get the most benefit from consolidating your laundry area. If you have a particularly narrow laundry area, take a look at Whirlpool: the brand makes some laundry centers that are as narrow as 24 in. wide, making them ideal for small, awkward spaces.
Centrally Located Controls Make Access Easier
Unlike a traditional stacked washer and dryer set, a laundry center places all the controls in the middle of the combination unit. This means that the short people in your household don't need a stepladder every time they want to run the dryer anymore! Laundry centers also often come with all-in-one programming functions that reduce the number of buttons you have to press to get a load of laundry going, as well. In particular, laundry centers in LG's WashTower Series use Smart Pairing™ technology to coordinate between the washer and the dryer. This automatically tells the dryer to select a compatible drying cycle, reducing your laundry day workload by a significant amount.
Cons of Laundry Centers
Malfunctions Interrupt both Washing and Drying
The all-in-one function of a laundry center can be both a good and a bad thing. In particular, when a stand-alone washer or dryer breaks, you can still use the other machine. Malfunctions in a laundry center, however, impact both its washing and drying functions until you get your laundry center repaired. While modern laundry centers are built to reduce the occurrence of these malfunctions, it's still important to plan for this eventuality when you make your initial purchase.
Smaller Capacities May Mean More Loads of Laundry
The compact design of most laundry centers was listed as one of their major benefits, but that benefit also creates a drawback. If you have a large family, or if your household generates a high volume of laundry, a laundry center may not have enough capacity for your needs. In small spaces such as apartments, you may be limited to washers and dryers with a smaller capacity anyway, reducing the impact of this problem, but if you do a lot of laundry and you have the space for larger stand-alone washer and dryer units, that may end up being the better option for you.
How long does a laundry center last?
A laundry center lasts about as long as a non-stacked washer and dryer set. The life expectancy of a laundry center is about 13 to 15 years, on average.
Can you run both a stackable washer and dryer at the same time?
Yes, you can run both the washer and the dryer in a laundry center at the same time.