I remember moving into my new home and needing to replace the outdated washer and dryer. And like the strong woman I always claimed to be, I convinced my husband that I could save us some money by hooking up the machine myself. Let’s just say that it didn’t go as planned. I ended up learning to do the task from a professional.
Let’s be honest; hooking up a washing machine and dryer by yourself is not exactly a straightforward task; it’s tricky, and if you’re doing it for the first time, you will grapple with a few things before you (maybe) get it right. But doing it yourself will save a chunk of your money, so why not just skip calling the technician and do it yourself?
There are directions, of course, but they frequently use obscure technical jargon that seems to be written in a different language. So I created this installation guide with all the information you require on how to hook up a washing machine and dryer, making the whole process a breeze.
What You Will Need
The whole task should take about an hour – two hours at most – with the right tools. So without wasting much of your time, here are the tools you’ll need to do the hooking up:
- A wrench
- Screwdrivers (Philips & flatheads)
- Wire Stripper
- Caulking and caulking gun
- A standard plumb
You should also have the following washer and dryer parts to work with for both appliances:
- Vent clamps (for dryer)
- Power cord
- Washer drain hose
- Dryer duct and vent
- “Y” connector
- Gas flex line
- Water supply hose
For new dryers and washers, these components are frequently kept within the appliances in the drum of the appliances. Always verify that you purchased and got the appropriate appliance parts before you begin the installation.
Before You Begin, Take Note
Here are a few things to do before you hook up your new washer and dryer:
1. Turn Off Water Valves
You don’t want to flood the working area accidentally, so it’s best to always shut off the water valves around areas where you will be working before starting any plumbing operation. You will normally find the water valves on the wall behind the washer.
2. Measurement Distances – Will the Available Space Suffice?
Measure the space between the connections and the installation location before moving the appliances to ensure that the dryer vents, new hoses, and electrical cables will not be too short to work with the new appliances’ features.
3. Doorways & Stairways – Can Your Appliances Get Through?
The washer and dryer will need to be transported via hallways, doors, and stairs; therefore, knowing these spaces’ dimensions is crucial and will help ensure that the appliances will fit nicely without harming doors or adjoining walls. If you measure the spaces and find that you need to remove doors, you may need to call a professional to help you with the whole process.
Let’s go straight to installing your new washer and dryer.
How To Hook Up Your Washer And Dryer
It is good practice to get acquainted with your washer and dryer installation instructions; the unique features of your appliances will be explained there. The instructions given here, however, should work with most dryers and washers.
Follow these instructions to hook up your washing machine correctly:
Step 1 – Remove Debris Lurking In the Faucets
You do not want to start on the wrong foot by clogging your new washing machine with debris, so it’s important first to run some water to flush out debris that may be lurking in the faucets. You should use both hot and cold water settings.
Step 2 – Move the Washer Into Position
Slide the device nearly up against the wall. Ensure that the space you leave behind is sufficient to connect the required pipes and wires. Once everything is connected, you can push it in the remaining distance.
Washing machines can be difficult to move alone so you may need extra hands for this step.
Step 3 – Connect the Hoses
Attach the appropriate faucets to the water supply hoses. The hoses are typically color-coded to make it easier for you to distinguish between the two. Blue will represent a cold water hose and red will represent a hot water hose; you should install the washer hoses with the aid of these colors. The hoses are not color-coded? You can use tape to differentiate the two before you proceed.
Connect the end of the filter screen to the faucet then tighten them. Do this by turning the couplings by hand in a clockwise direction until they become snug. Use a pair of pliers to gradually turn each hose coupling, then test the connection with your hands to ensure that it’s secure. One word of warning though: it shouldn’t be overly tight.
Step 4 – Connect the Supply Hoses to the Washer
It’s time to connect the hoses to the washer. The end has rubber washers that should connect to the washing machine. Next, tighten the coupler by turning it by hand. Once you are unable to spin them any tighter with your hands, use a wrench or a pair of pliers to tighten them firmly, but not too tightly.
Restart your water supply and turn on the faucets. You should verify that none of your connection points has a leak and that the water is flowing freely.
Step 5 – Connect Drain Hose to Washer
If your washing machine comes pre-connected with this step, then you can skip this step. Otherwise, use a screwdriver to complete this task. The drain hose typically screws into place just like the water supply hoses, so this should be no problem. Afterward, direct the drain hose into the drain receptacle using straps and hooks which should typically come with your washing. Check your owner’s manual for guidance.
After completing all these steps, your washing machine should be good to go. Connect the power cable and push the machine all the way against the wall. Now it’s time to install the dryer.
Follow these instructions to hook up your dryer correctly:
Step 1 – Clean the Dryer Vent
By way of protecting your new dryer from dirt and debris, just like we did with the washing machine, you need to first clean the dryer vent for the appliance. In addition to being dirty, a clogged vent poses a fire risk. You can use a shop vac, a dryer vent brush, or a combination of the two to clean out the debris before you start installing your dryer.
Step 2 – Move Dryer Into Position
It’s time to move the dryer into its approximate position after cleaning the vent, leaving just enough room for you to work behind. After installation is complete, you will only need to push it all the way against the wall through a small distance.
Step 3 – Attach the Dryer Vent Hose
Depending on the material the dryer vent is made of, the procedure for connecting the dryer vent hose will vary slightly. In some cases, it could be made of plastic, but metallic vents made from aluminum are more ideal and commonly used. The dryer’s vent opening on the back of the machine should snuggly accommodate the vent hose. Just follow the instructions in the owner’s manual to use your dryer’s clamps(for vent hose) if your appliance comes with one.
Step 4 – Connect Vent Hose to the Wall Vent
This is a straightforward step. The other end of the dryer vent should connect with the wall vent and usually requires no tapes or clamps. When you’re done, the hose should fit snugly.
Step 5 – Plug It In
After connecting the dryer vent and making sure it’s snuggly in place, plug it into an electrical receptacle and push it up against the wall, closing the gap. You will require a 240V plug if your new dryer. If the receptacle is not a 240V outlet, you should get one installed for you by an electrician.
For gas-powered dryers, the installation process is a bit more tricky and better left to professionals who know how to handle the complex process.
After hooking up the dryer and washer, use the plumb tool to make sure that the two appliances are perfectly aligned side-by-side and also verify that the floor on which they stand is leveled.
Advice For Houses That Never Had a Washer and Dryer Installed Before.
Although it is a far-fetched scenario, some houses have never had a washer and dryer installed in them before, so if you’re moving in, you’re immediately faced with the enormous hassle of first installing the hookups for these two super-useful appliances.
There’s no need to panic if this describes your situation. Although slightly more challenging, the installation process is still manageable. But unless you have prior experience, you should probably engage a professional to conduct this process.