I'm moving washer/dryer to my oregon garage, and the place where I'm
gonna put them is a local low. I sure as heck don't want that....
So, I get me a bag of self-leveler, runs 19 bucks, and that's a bullet I
only want to eat once. I could level out the area with self leveler, but
what would the edges look like?
So I thought, gosh, why not a pad for the washer and dryer made from
concrete? Has anyone done this?
My idea might be to make it an inch high. I might form it with wood and
then put masking tape on the inside of the form so that the edge stays
What do you think?
Garages are often considred (in this case by the electrical codes,
both NEC and local jurisdictions) high hazard locations, and as
such additional rules apply.
Just as one example, take a look at the locations of the
electrical outlets in (the vast majority of) garages.
They're not near ground level. They're five feet up.
Knowledge may be power, but communications is the key
I think the issue has to do with ignition sources being *above*
the level where gasoline vapors will settle. E.g., an entrance
into a home is typically *higher* than the floor level of the
garage so these vapors can't enter the house.
The *outlet* isn't the issue. A garage circuit must be GFCI protected -- but
you may be able to work around that with a dedicated circuit (?)
The issue has to do with the likely ignition source colocated in a place
where volatile fumes *will* be encountered.
Hey, if you're sure, go ahead and do whatever you want! If the house
*doesn't* catch fire, you'll only know about the potential violation when
you go to *sell* it -- and an inspector flags the item (which means
you must then notify ALL potential buyers of this issue and hope one
of them wants to figure out how to move the laundry)
Please reread my initial reply: I didn't tell you NOT to do this.
Rather, I *suggested* you might want to do a bit of research
(do you own a telephone?) before embarking on this:
"Be sure you check local codes, first. You might find that the
dryer has to be elevated above the main level of the floor (gasoline
As your washer and dryer were NOT originally in the garage:
"I'm moving washer/dryer to my oregon garage, and the place where
I'm gonna put them is a local low. I sure as heck don't want that"
I can't infer that this placement *would* be legal to your local code
(here, garage laundry's are all located 6 inches above the level of
the garage floor -- even *electric* appliances). So, it seemed
prudent to CHECK, FIRST!
I appreciate your concern, but there are no local codes. I'm building to
Maybe I should have also mentioned that I'm a journeyman carpenter, and
I've never had anything red-tagged or that blew up or caught fire or
It seems to me that if I were going to try to satisfy a stricter code, I
would raise the level of the appliances quite justifiably. They are
front loaders. The washer has a vanity on its backside that it can share
DWV with, so the modification to the plumbing is minimal.
Given that I'm gonna raise it with concrete whether it's required or
not, what height would you go? I'm thinking 1-1/2".
Should I go the whole 6?
You have to decide if you think the code is there to be nit-picky *or*
to protect you (and your neighbors) from things that can and do go wrong.
I have no idea. Our laundry is in the house -- proximaate to the garage.
Other neighbors who have laundry *hookups* (i.e., the house was built with
this use in mind -- 30+ years ago) have their "laundry closets" deliberately
elevated. Other "closets" (storage areas similar in size, shape AND
LOCATION to the laundry closet) are at "garage floor level". I.e.,
someone incurred extra costs to ensure these laundry areas were elevated
(to the same level of the rest of the house -- ABOVE the garage floor)
We've found it isn't a cut-and-dry decision.
With the appliances at "floor level", you have a useful work surface
on the tops of each. But, the washer is a killer (wet clothes are heavy
so transferring them to the dryer is rough on the lower back)
Elevate them and it's a lot easier to gain access. But, the top
work surface disappears. In our case, we have cabinets above the
appliances. With them at floor level, there is a useful gap
between the appliance tops and the cabinet undersides; once elevated,
that gap disappears -- taking the work surface with it.
The honey-do list includes fabricating a powered scissor lift for them
so we can raise them to unload and lower to have the tops available
(to fold clothes, etc.)
On a sort of washing machine note, I was in
a laundromat in about 1985 or so. They had a
posterboard sign with magic marker writing.
"THESE ARE IOLB WASHERS"
I'd wondered what iolb meant? Years
later, might have an idea. Anyone want
to guess what iolb is?
I did that once where the slope to a floor drain made leveling the
washer/dryer hard to keep level, I made the forms 3 1/2 inches because
that's what the 2x4 I used decided it would be. Made for a nice solid
base and a leaking washing machine or hose won't ruin it. Tamp any air
bubbles out, push the gravel down if there is any and finish it with
concrete finishing tools, a little slope to the front, just enough so
water won't puddle to the sides or wall.
Inch thick concrete would be prone to cracking. I'd go 2" or more, but
first . . .
If it is a top loader, will you or your wife be able to reach in
comfortably? Our washer is a couple of inches higher than the older
model and my 5'3" wife can barely reach in to get stuff off the bottom
of the tub. Another inch would be a problem.
Concrete is pretty permanent so I'd consider a 2 x 3 frame with plywood top.
Don't do it! I did that once, wife hated it. Actually, I hated it as well.
So we added a master bedroom, closet (85% hers, 15% mine), bath and laundry room to house.
Now wife happy! Happy wife, happy life.
FWIW, in our jurisdiction, code requires all appliances to be 18" off a garage floor.
Has something to do with sparks and gas fumes. So if you have a top-load washer,
you'll need to build the platform large enough to stand on while loading the washer.
And since your new platform is 18" above the floor, you may also be required by
insurance and/or AHJ to build a step and railings.
If you still insist on garage laundry, it might be best to purchase front-load
models with all controls and filters on the front of the machines so you can
eliminate the operator part of the platform as well as the steps/railings.
And when it's time to service the unit, obviously you have another problem.
How's your back? Or do you own a small fork lift?
I ask because some appliance service companies now require the unit to be at
floor level before they will perform repairs.
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