We all strive to bring our clients the newest and most exciting features, time saving devices and life enhancing products for their kitchens, wet bars, outdoor entertaining areas or anywhere household appliances may be of use. The amount of new technology for all areas of the home is astonishing. It is now time for the laundry rooms to be in the spotlight.
When designing a new laundry area, be it a traditional laundry room, master suite, casita or man cave garage, color of the equipment is often one of the first questions. The industry is introducing new colors to enhance the appearance and lovability of this work-horse room. Stainless steel and charcoal greys continue to be in high demand.
The basic categories for laundry include the traditional top load or front load, either on pedestals or stacked. Within the front load category there is the most common full -sized 27” wide foot print or the still full-sized capacity but 24” wide. The full sized front load 27” wide sets do require more depth than the 24” wide and that is important to know. The 24” wide full sized capacities tend to be from brands like ASKO.
There are now a variety of top load machines that offer the water saving and fabric care benefits of front load washers without the extra depth required of the front load machines thus allowing for more design flexibility. LG, Maytag, Whirlpool, Kenmore and others are leading this trend with design features like lower sleek appearing back control panels with full electronic controls. Glass see-through lids and chrome or stainless steel accents add that air of style and sophistication to the laundry room designers and consumers are looking for. LG offers this top load machine with full front controls; no more working over the washing machine lid. This is also a benefit for shorter consumers and may be easier to view being at the front of the machine.
There are new products for the “early adapters” of technology also. Whirlpool has introduced E-Star dryers and now duct-free or condensation style dryers using heat pump technology. The condensation dryer is a great fit in housing units where you can’t exhaust to the outside. We see this need often in condo rehabs. Also coming from LG is Twin Wash ™, a revolutionary system in front load laundry that transforms the basic storage drawer/ pedestal into a second wash machine for small or delicate loads. This allows for washing two loads at once. The heat pump technology for dryers recycling heat can reduce energy consumption by as much as 53%.
Even though we can buy these life enhancing washers and dryers with all the features including steam dry cycles that reduce the need for lots of ironing, I still iron some clothes myself. Remember that you can design in a wonderful Iron-A-Way system in to your client’s home too!
The expertise we all bring to the home for our clients can be extended to the least favorite room for some and create some love in the laundry room.
Andy Welemin, Account Manager with Monark Premier Appliance Co., formerly Westar Kitchen & Bath, has been involved in home products since 1977 and, specifically, in the appliance industry since 1983. Andy is a member of NKBA and NARI and a past board member of the National Kitchen & Bath Association, Minnesota and Arizona. You can reach Andy at Andy.Welemin@Monarkhome.com