"Stackable" washers and dryers vs. conventional set

Still in the throes of buying a house. Will need all new appliances, as it will come with none. Something I recall when touring this house is that the washer/dryer pair do not fit into thier space (this seems massively common in most houses we looked at when househunting. Have appliances gotten bigger over the years?). It is arranged where the washer sits in front of the dryer because there's about 3" of overlap. In addition, the washer/dryer are currently in a weird place and we might just relocate them anyways.
It is a small house and I haven't had a chance to attack it with a tape measure yet. There is a small area off the kitchen where we might put the washer/dryer, but it's possible that a conventional set may not fit there either. So then comes up the "stackable" or "over/under combo" unit question. Appliance stores seem to be rather devoid of these- I only remember seeing one example that was dogshit brown (and beat up looking) and could possibly handle half the load(s) of a standard set. There was no price tag on it.
1) do they make 'stackable' units that can handle a full load of laundry?
2) "what are you gonna do when one side breaks?" is what i hear a lot. Any real-world experience on reliability/repair, etc? Something tells me that having the guy from Sears out to fix your dryer will be about the same experience for me whether it's stackable or not.
3) how are these efficiency-wise? Gas dryers available as stackables?
4) Is the end cost of acquisition less, same, or more than buying a conventional set?
5) Any recommendations of brands and stores to acquire appliances are appreciated.
TIA!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Our previous house had the same issues, small tight space for laundry (or basement, which wasn't a pleasant place to do laundry). We bought a Kenmore washer & dryer (separately). The washer will either have to be a front loader or you'll have to get one of the sets that is made for stacking. I would steer clear of the Kenmore at least at the lower end models, the one we had lasted 3 years before the drum support broke. Sears "service" was absolutely no help - "sorry, this isn't under warranty any more, but we can schedule a service call for you..." I ended up fixing it myself, though I had to buy an entirely new washer drum (all this while trying to sell the house - "please ignore the washing machine parts strewn across the bathroom"). Anyway, the dryer was gas, and up to the point where the washer broke down we were VERY happy with the machine and had used it for many loads of normal laundry plus my wife's nursing uniforms, plus our daughter's cloth diapers. The front loaders are quite efficient, but have a mixed reliability record pretty much across the board when it comes to the manufacturers. Dryers are pretty simple machines and usually have fewer problems. We had no issues with the gas dryer.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I guess I had better ask the question now:
Does "stackable" refer to separate units that are truly "stackable"? I always thought people were referring to the 'combo' units where there was a washer and dryer all in the same (inseperable) housing as "stackable".
*duh*
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I one saw a washer dryer combo in a class A motor. At the time it was way to expensive for me.
Lots of manufactures make 'stackable either separately or in a single unit.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Had you been using the special "High Efficiency" (low-sudsing) detergent made for front-loaders?
Our Sears guy told us (when he came to replace the control module -- $200+ +labor unit free under our maintenance contract) that the major cause of bearing and other mechanical failures in front-loaders is using regular (mucho suds) detergent.
Perce
On 11/16/05 12:03 pm louie tossed the following ingredients into the ever-growing pot of cybersoup:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
We bought a stackable Maytag front loader pair and have been very happy with them. The appliance store we dealt with said we could user regular detergent as long as we used ~1/3 what we used in a top loader. We've been doing this for the 4 months since we bought the units with no problem.
There is a lot of advantages using these units (They use much less water, clean better and are much easier on clothes) but are much pricier. However if you stack them the unit on top is pretty high up. My wife nixed stacking them because she couldn't reach the controls on the upper unit. She is 5' tall.
Jon

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Just buy front loaders, and build a platform for the upper one. Better make that the dryer.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I had mentioned this very exact thing initially, but my roommate said I'm nucking futz....
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Many front loaders can be stacked. The necessary brackets are extra.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Rich256 wrote:

Even non-front loader can be stacked. Tony
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

But aren't they built that way whereas it is an option for front loaders?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 11/16/05 10:23 pm Rich256 tossed the following ingredients into the ever-growing pot of cybersoup:

We have Kenmore twins (made by Frigidaire). The stacking brackets came with either the washer or the dryer (probably the latter). What was extra was the shipping kit for the washer when we moved house: the delivery guys took the parts away with them, and Sears said that's standard practice.
Perce
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The combo units are called "laundry centers", so if you are searching the web try using that term. We have a Whirlpool. Cost about $850. No problem doing a full load.

We had a warranty repair once. The wire from the lid switch had a loose connection. What was nice is this unit is accessible from the front and top for repairs. So we didn't have un-install it and pull it out to get to the back.
Good luck.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

My wife told me she wanted a stackable washer and dryer. We already had a good top loading washer and dryer, so I made her a stackable unit by setting the washer on top of the dryer. The setup worked fine except that she kept whining about how heavy the washer was when she had to lift it to load and unload the dryer. She forced me to buy her a factory stackable system when the washer became unbalanced during the spin cycle one day and shook so hard it slid off the dryer and fell on our dog. I can't recommend a stackable.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.