There’s nothing like hitting the open road in an RV—relishing in the comfort of a mobile home while basking in the glory of nature within our spectacular national parks. But at the end of the day, RVing is still camping, and everyday household chores require a lot more effort than they would at home.
One of your weekly essentials on the road will be washing your clothes, which, unless you have a mammoth wardrobe, will need to be done every week or so. Sure, you could pop into the nearest RV park and use their facilities, but chances are the place will be packed, and you’ll have to keep checking whether the washer is free multiple times throughout the day. And to make matters worse, someone always ends up “accidentally” taking your favorite pair of socks—it’s far from ideal.
A much better option, if your rig permits, is to install or store a washer dryer combo inside. As the ultimate RV luxury item, a washer dryer combo lets you do your laundry on your own time without having to hustle in line at the RV park or laundromat. We’re going to look at the top eight options on the market after this short introductory guide.
- Features to Consider
- Top 8 Best RV Washer Dryer Combos 2023
- 1. Best Overall RV Washer Dryer Combo: Giantex Portable Washing Machine
- 2. Best Premium RV Washer Dryer Combo: Splendide WD2100XC
- 3. SUPER DEAL Portable Twin Tub Washing Machine
- 4. Best Choice Products Portable Laundry Machine & Dryer
- 5. Best Budget RV Washer Dryer Combo: COSTWAY Mini Washing Machine
- 6. ThinkGizmos Portable Washing Machine
- 7. Best Non-Vented Single-Drum Washer Dryer: Splendide WDC7100XC
- 8. Best Non-Electric RV Washer Dryer Combo: WOAIM Portable Washer/Dryer
- RV Washer Dryer Combo Buyer’s Guide
- The Best RV Washer Dryer Combo: Final Thoughts
Features to Consider
Before you start sifting through our eight recommendations for RV washer dryer combos, you need to wrap your head around the concept of mobile laundering. The best machine is subjective; what works for your buddy won’t necessarily be the best option for you. Take the following things into consideration before purchasing an RV washer dryer combo from our list.
The Type of RV Washer Dryer Combo
RV washer dryer combos come in three main forms:
- RV Single-Drum Washer Dryer Combo: these have a single drum that does both the washing and the tumble drying.
- Stackable RV Washer Dryer: these have two drums stacked on top of each other, one for washing and one for tumble drying.
- Portable RV Washer Dryer: these aren’t permanently installed into your RV and have one drum for washing and one drum for spin-drying.
See our section on the pros and cons of each type to help you decide which type is best for your needs. Note that portable models can only spin-dry your clothes; you’ll still have to hang them up to get them properly dry.
Non-portable models are either vented (faster and more efficient, but require an exhaust pipe to the outside) or non-vented (slower and less efficient, but does not need an exhaust fan). Skip ahead to our section on Vented Versus Non-Vented Washer Dryer Combos to learn more.
How Often Do You Use Your RV?
Are you a weekend warrior, or are you living in your RV full time? The more time you spend inside your great mobile home, the more money you should spend on decking it out to make life as comfortable and convenient as can be.
Fulltime RVers would be wise to splash out on a top of the line model with a high load capacity and a low power draw (especially if they’re using it off-grid). Occasional adventurers, however, could settle for a cheap option that covers the bare basics.
Will You Be Using It Off-Grid?
If you plan to do your laundry while boondocking (camping off-grid in a remote location), then energy and water efficiency must take the utmost priority. After all, you’ll need to supply power through solar panels/batteries plus water through your freshwater tank. And getting a super-efficient machine will mean less drain on those precious off-grid resources.
Another crucial factor to consider is your inverter. Is it beefy enough to handle the wattage of your power-hungry washer dryer combo? Boondockers will need a mighty strong inverter, a massive battery bank, and a marvelous solar set up to run a single-drum or stackable washer dryer combo off the grid. Portables have much lower resource requirements, so they’re worth considering if your RV isn’t fully decked out.
If you’re planning on using your machine via shore power—plugging into the 120V grid and water hook up at your nearest RV park—then energy and water efficiency aren’t relevant, unless you’re environmentally conscious. For most, you’ve already paid for the electricity and water upfront, so there’s no harm in using a smidgen more.
Want to learn more about the art of washing while boondocking? Then skip ahead to Using Your RV Washer Dryer Off-Grid.
The Load Capacity
How often do you plan on laundering your clothes? How many times are you happy to wear the same t-shirt before chucking it in the wash?
Load capacity refers to the total weight of the clothes you can wash in one go. Note that RV washer dryer combos have a much lower load capacity than their household counterparts because they’re designed to fit into a smaller space.
There’s no point buying an RV washer dryer combo that’s too big for the available space, so it’s essential you carefully measure the dimensions before committing to a purchase.
Aside from width, length, and height, you may also want to consider the weight. If your RV is already approaching the limit of its Gross Vehicle Mass (the maximum permitted weight as specified by the vehicle manufacturer), then you need to be very careful not to exceed that amount. Not only will your overburdened RV fail to make it up steep hills, but you will also be in breach of your registration. And let’s not forget that heavier RVs consume more miles per gallon on each trip.
Furthermore, weight is especially crucial for portable washer dryers if you plan on moving them around the RV or using them outside.
It’s a complex choice, but those are the basics you’ll need to choose the right washer/dryer combo for your RV. If you want a more in-depth analysis as well as some other things to consider with your purchase, or you’re new to life on the road and want some basics, check out our full guide below.
|Product||Type||Load Capacity||Wattage||Dimensions||Weight||Run Time||Rating|
|Giantex Portable Washing Machine||Portable||Washing 11 lbs / spinning 6.6 lbs||Washing 300w / spinning 110w||31 x 27 x 16 inches||28 pounds||Washing 15 mins / Spinning 5 mins||5|
|Splendide WD2100XC||Single-drum||washing 15 lbs / drying 11 pounds||1300W||23.5 x 22.6 x 33.12 inches||Washing 40 mins / Drying 45 mins||5|
|SUPER DEAL Portable Twin Tub Washing Machine||Portable||Washing 8 lbs / spinning 5 lbs||240 W||23 x 13.5 x 26 inches||26.4 pounds||Washing 15 mins / Spinning 5 mins||5|
|Best Choice Products Portable Laundry Machine & Dryer||Portable||washing 8 lbs / spinning 5 lbs||300W||23″ x 13.5″ x 26″||23 lbs||Washing 15 mins / Spinning 5 mins||4.5|
|COSTWAY Mini Washing Machine||Portable||7 lbs||200W||22 x 15 x 14 inches||13.95 lbs||Washing 10 mins / Spinning 5 mins||4|
|ThinkGizmos Portable Washing Machine||Portable||Washing 8 lbs / spinning 4.4 lbs||Washing 230W/ spinning 100W||23 x 14 x 27 inches||27 pounds||Washing 15 mins / Spinning 5 mins||4|
|Splendide WDC7100XC||Single-Drum||Washing 15 lbs / drying 11 lbs||1300 watts||33 x 23 x 22 inches||145 pounds||Washing 30 mins / Rinsing 30 mins / Drying 150 mins||4|
|WOAIM Portable Washer/Dryer||Non-electric portable||4.4 lbs||16 x 13 x 15 inches||9 pounds||3.5|
Top 8 Best RV Washer Dryer Combos 2023
1. Best Overall RV Washer Dryer Combo: Giantex Portable Washing Machine
- Type: Portable
- Load Capacity: Washing 11 lbs / spinning 6.6 lbs
- Wattage: Washing 300w / spinning 110w
- Dimensions: 31 x 27 x 16 inches
- Weight: 28 pounds
- Run Time: Washing 15 mins / Spinning 5 mins
The portable washer dryer combo is the option of choice for countless RV enthusiasts around America, and the Giantex Twin Tub Washing Machine is the cream of the crop. This wildly popular unit can be found on small and big rigs alike from Florida to New Hampshire and everywhere in-between.
The secret to Giantex’s success is simple: create an affordable product that works. While other portable washer dryer combos are notoriously fickle, Giantex has built a reliable piece of equipment that gets the job done—and it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.
The dimensions here are relatively petite, so most RVers will have a cupboard somewhere to stash the machine until its time to clean. And with a modest 300W for washing and 110W for spinning, you won’t need an epic battery bank to run this little wonder off the grid. And even though it’s famously quiet and easy to use, the Giantex still manages to coax out even the most stubborn of stains.
Like most portable options, it’s a twin tub, so you’ll need to transfer the laundry into the spinner by hand. Furthermore, the spinner holds half the capacity of the washer, which means double the work.
Nonetheless, given its low price point, effective wash/spin cycles, and tiny dimensions, this product is certainly our #1 pick overall.
- Low price point
- Simple interface
- Small and lightweight
- Extremely popular and well-known
- Spinner capacity is half that of the washer
- Type: Single-drum
- Vented: Yes
- Load Capacity: washing 15 lbs / drying 11 pounds
- Wattage: 1300W
- Dimensions: 23.5 x 22.6 x 33.12 inches
- Run Time: Washing 40 mins / Drying 45 mins
If you’ve got the space to slip a single-drum washer dryer combo into your RV, then the WD2100XC Splendide is…well…splendid. This wonderful machine takes all the effort out of washing your clothes on the road—simply configure the desired settings then go explore the great outdoors while it does its thing. The entire washing and tumble drying process takes about an hour and a half, just enough time to grill a few juicy steaks on the BBQ as you admire those epic alpine views.
At well over a thousand bucks, the WD2100XC Splendide costs a fortune compared to the cheaper portable washer dryer combos on our list. Nonetheless, that’s money well spent for the full-time RVer who wants a machine to tumble dry their clothes until they’re all toasty warm.
Although it kind of looks like a household washer dryer combo, the reality is the load capacity is much lower than what you would expect at home. Having said that, it’s still way higher than any of the portable washing machines out there. Furthermore, you don’t have to manually switch your laundry between a washing and a spinning tub, or have to hang it all up on the line afterward. Consequently, the whole laundering process becomes super easy—just like at home.
Rest assured Splendide built this model specially for RV and marine use; it’s super sturdy and won’t breakdown as you traverse all those bumps on the road.
There are a couple of things you need to be aware of before you bash that ‘buy now’ button, though. First, the washer dryer combo uses a whopping 1300W, which will require a big battery bank and inverter if you plan to use it off the grid (connecting it to the mains is no problem, however). Second, this model is vented (find out more about the differences here), which means you need to have an exhaust pipe leading to the exterior of your RV. If you’re A-Okay with these two conditions, then the WD2100XC can’t be beaten.
- Single-drum design doesn’t require moving laundry from washer to dryer
- Saves you lots of time and hassle
- Vented to the exterior for faster drying
- High wattage
3. SUPER DEAL Portable Twin Tub Washing Machine
- Type: Portable
- Load Capacity: Washing 8 lbs / spinning 5 lbs
- Wattage: 240 W
- Dimensions: 23 x 13.5 x 26 inches
- Weight: 26.4 pounds
- Run Time: Washing 15 mins / Spinning 5 mins
You’ll pay a little more for the privilege, but the Portable Twin Tub Washing Machine from SUPER DEAL is still one heck of a super deal. The reason we reckon it’s so great is simple: the powerful machine runs at a whopping 1300 RPM, which lets it finish it’s wash and spin cycle much quicker than the other portable combos out there.
And despite the fact it runs quick, the machine does an excellent job of washing and spin-drying your clothes. Expect to get a wrinkle-free pile of fresh laundry with every load, sans those annoying detergent stains.
Plus—and this is a big plus—you can run the washer and the dryer at the same time, which makes the whole laundry process much easier to manage. So, despite the fact it costs about double that of our cheapest recommendation, it’s money well spent for the time-poor RVer.
Another cool feature is its translucent plastic tub, which lets you watch your washing in action (handy if something gets stuck). Although you might associate plastic with being cheap, it’s beneficial in the portable washer dryer world because it means the machine isn’t prone to rust.
On the downside, the load capacity here is rather low, so don’t expect to wash and dry a big pile of laundry at the same time. You might have to purchase a new hose connection, too, as the included ones don’t fit every faucet.
- Runs at 1300 RPM (more than other models)
- Has a compact, lightweight design
- The plastic body isn’t prone to rust
- More expensive than other portables
- Low load capacity
4. Best Choice Products Portable Laundry Machine & Dryer
- Type: Portable
- Load Capacity: washing 8 lbs / spinning 5 lbs
- Wattage: 300W
- Dimensions: 23″ x 13.5″ x 26″
- Run-time: Washing 15 mins / Spinning 5 mins
- Weight: 23 lbs
Best Choice Products do one of the best portable washer dryers on the market. The product is a hit among American consumers for its rapid washing and spinning time and its simple, user-friendly interface. The device washes in 15 minutes and spin dries in five, which is notably quicker than other options out there—and the fact you can perform both functions at once makes everything so much easier.
Another awesome feature is the filtration system that stops lint, hair, and other nasty gunk from clogging up the drain. That means you won’t have to waste time cleaning your washer dryer after every use—a definite bonus on our book!
It’s about on par with its competitors in terms of weight and size, although the unit is a little more power-hungry than other portables, something to consider if you’ve got limited juice. It’s also a tiny bit noisier than other options, so think twice about putting on a load late at night in the RV park.
- Easy to use
- Washes and spin-dries at the same time
- Fast and effective
- Superb filtration system
- Uses a bit more power than others
- Quite noisy
5. Best Budget RV Washer Dryer Combo: COSTWAY Mini Washing Machine
- Type: Portable
- Load Capacity: 7 lbs
- Wattage: 200W
- Dimensions: 22 x 15 x 14 inches
- Weight: 13.95 lbs
- Run-time: Washing 10 mins / Spinning 5 mins
Weighing in at a meager 14 pounds, the COSTWAY Mini Washing Machine is the lightest washer dryer combo on our list and is little enough to lift with one arm. Forget about busting your back by trying to lug a heavy combo machine out of the closet every time you need to clean your clothes. This model gives portability a whole new meaning.
Naturally, the downside is it can’t wash a big load of clothes at once; there’s a minuscule load capacity of just seven pounds to play with. Nonetheless, if you’re happy to wash often and want something petite and cheap, COSTAWAY delivers the goods.
Using the thing is super simple, too: fill it with water, set the timer, and away you go. Ten minutes later, it’ll have finished its wash cycle, and five minutes after that, it’ll stop spin-drying.
One thing we don’t love about this model is you have to stand there and watch the water fill to the brim—there’s no automatic mechanism to stop it overflowing. Also, if you don’t load it correctly with even weight distribution, the spin cycle will force the machine to shake like mad and make an awful racket (that causes additional wear and tear as well).
- Small and light
- Easy to use
- User needs to monitor the water level when filling
- Spin cycle is problematic without proper weight distribution
6. ThinkGizmos Portable Washing Machine
- Type: Portable
- Load Capacity: Washing 8 lbs / spinning 4.4 lbs
- Wattage: Washing 230W/ spinning 100W
- Dimensions: 23 x 14 x 27 inches
- Weight: 27 pounds
- Run-time: Washing 15 mins / Spinning 5 mins
Happy campers who are prepared to spend a bit more on a decent portable washer dryer combo might consider this excellent option from ThinkGizmos. It costs about double the price of the cheapest portable on our list, but that’s money well spent if you’re passionate about wearing spotlessly clean clothing at the campground. Put simply, ThinkGizmos is more effective at removing stains and nasty odors than its portable competitors.
The model is on par with other portables in terms of weight, size, and wattage, although it will take slightly longer to finish a full run (20 minutes all up). A built-in lint filter succeeds at keeping the fluffy stuff from sticking all over your fresh, clean clothes.
Be warned, though, if you overfill it or don’t get the weight distribution right, it’ll shake itself around the room and make an annoying amount of noise.
- Cleans better than most portables
- Has an effective lint filter
- Comparable in size and weight to other portables
- Has a slightly longer cycle than most
- Problematic when overloaded
7. Best Non-Vented Single-Drum Washer Dryer: Splendide WDC7100XC
- Type: Single-Drum
- Vented: No
- Load Capacity: Washing 15 lbs / drying 11 lbs
- Wattage: 1300 watts
- Dimensions: 33 x 23 x 22 inches
- Weight: 145 pounds
- Run-time: Washing 30 mins / Rinsing 30 mins / Drying 150 mins
Non-vented single-drum washer dryer combos require more power to run and take longer to dry than their vented counterparts. However, as these don’t need an exhaust pipe to the exterior of the vehicle, they’re the only viable option for RVers who don’t have such a pipe yet still want the raw drying power of a proper tumble drier. And Splendide does the best non-vented model on the market with its flagship WDC7100XC.
The load capacity of 15/11lbs doesn’t compete with a domestic washer dryer, but it’s pretty good for a mobile home and easily outperforms any portable options on the market. And although the drier might not be as quick or effective as our favorite vented model, the Splendide WD2100XC, it still gets your clothes all toasty warm and dry with minimal fuss.
The total run time drags on for 3.5 hours (2.5 hours just for tumble drying), but the fact you can ‘set it and forget it’ makes up for the wait.
Sadly, much like other non-vented washer dryer combos, the construction is a bit fickle and prone to breakdown, so expect to have to repair it sooner or later. Also, the included plastic necks that sit between the hose and couples have a nasty tendency to crack, leaving a swamp of soapy water in its wake. Thankfully, it’s an easy situation to remedy by buying quality stainless steel replacements from your local hardware store.
- Non-vented models can tumble dry without an exhaust pipe to the exterior
- Set it and forget it—no need to swap clothes between drums for drying
- Does a great job of washing and drying
- Non-vented models take a long time to dry
- Machine occasionally breaks down
- Some stock parts are low quality (can be replaced)
8. Best Non-Electric RV Washer Dryer Combo: WOAIM Portable Washer/Dryer
- Type: Non-electric portable
- Load Capacity: 4.4 lbs
- Dimensions: 16 x 13 x 15 inches
- Weight: 9 pounds
Don’t have an inverter in your RV? Then you need a washing and drying solution that doesn’t require any electricity at all! Introducing the Portable Washer/Dryer from WOAIM, a wonder device that washes and cleans your clothes without a single watt. There is a catch, of course: you have to do all the hard work yourself.
Rather than relying on an electric powered motor, WOAIM has you spinning the drum of the washer-dryer through your arms. You’ll have to yank a cord up and down, again and again, until your clothes are finally clean and dry enough to hang up on the line. It’s backbreaking work, but there’s no denying the concept is eco-friendly, and you could certainly save on your membership at the gym.
The lightweight design and small dimensions mean you could also stash this away in a small storage space and retrieve it when needed. Do note, however, it has a minuscule load capacity of 4.4 pounds, meaning you’ll be tugging away at those cords for an eternity if you need to clean and spin dry a big load.
And it well over a hundred bucks, it hardly seems terrific value when there’s plenty of cheaper portable electric models out there. Nonetheless, if you like the idea of washing your clothes with your own raw effort, then go ahead and grab this one to stow in your RV.
- Doesn’t require electricity
- Good exercise
- Eco-friendly concept
- Hard work to use
- Small load capacity
RV Washer Dryer Combo Buyer’s Guide
RV washer dryer combos vary significantly from your typical domestic machines, and there’s quite a lot to learn about the art of washing your clothes on the road.
In this section, we provide a comprehensive breakdown of everything you need to know about RV washer dryers and outline the pros and cons of each type. That way, you’ll have the necessary knowledge at hand to make an informed purchase and can enjoy the benefits of your mobile washing machine for years to come.
Why You Should Buy an RV Washer Dryer Combo
Sure, you could get by without an RV washer dryer combo, but the marvelous machine will make your life on the road so much easier. By having your very own washing facilities onboard, you can bypass the queue at the RV park and skip the line at the laundromat.
Traveling in an RV already entails a whole host of annoying domestic chores: washing your clothes and bed linen, filling up your fresh water tank, emptying your grey water tank, disposing of your black water, refueling your gas tank, and ensuring your batteries have plenty of juice. Having a washer dryer combo at the ready makes laundering a breeze, giving you more time to focus on these other tasks or—better yet—relaxing in the great outdoors.
The Pros & Cons of Each RV Washer Dryer Type
Are you confused about the different types of RV washer dryers on the market? Here, we’ll break down the benefits and drawbacks of each to help you decide what works best for you.
Single Drum RV Washer Dryer Combos
As the name suggests, these machines have one single drum that washes then tumble dries your clothes at the push of a button (manufacturers may refer to them as RV Washer Dryer Combos or Combination RV Washer Dryers). Single drum models are the most popular type of non-portable RV washer dryers as they don’t require much space (under 25 x 25 x 35 inches), have modest energy and water requirements, and you don’t need to take your clothes out of the washer and put them into the drier (unlike the stackable model).
- Compact design is easy to fit into your RV (many new RVs have slots where you can plug them in yourself)
- Vented and non-vented models available
- Uses less electricity than stackable models
- Tumble drying will full dry your clothes
- One button washing and drying—set it and forget it
- Can’t do large loads of laundry at once (up to 15 pounds)
- Longer total laundering time than stackable washer dryers
- Uses quite a lot of water (20-25 gallons per load)
Sound tempting? Our favorite single-drum washer dryer combo is the fantastic Splendide WD2100XC.
Stackable RV Washer Dryer Combos
Stackable RV washer dryer combos work with two drums; the tumble dryer is stacked on top of the washer. Although the maximum load per drum is only around 12 pounds, give or take, the beautiful thing is you can run both drums at the same time—perfect for families with large washing requirements. In fact, stackable RV washer dryers have a comparable load capacity to dual-drum domestic units, so you can get away with washing just about anything you like.
As for the dimensions, you need a bit more available width and depth than the single-drum variety (up to 30 inches wide by 30 inches deep). But as you’d expect, they’re much higher, usually reaching 70 inches or so. Folks who own a big rig with plenty of extra space may prefer these models as they allow you to churn through a massive pile of laundry quickly, despite the fact you need to transfer your clothes between each drum manually.
Portable RV Washer Dryer Combos
Although these machines are called “portable,” that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re easy to cart around—some weigh as much as 100 pounds, although 15 to 25 is the norm. The term “portable” refers to the fact they don’t need to be installed into your RV; simply plug them into an electrical outlet, fill them with water, and your good to go.
The major downside to portable combos—and it’s a doozy—is they spin-dry rather than tumble dry. Spin-drying leaves your clothes damp rather than soaking wet, so you’ll still need to hang them up on the line before slipping them on.
Portable RV washer dryer combos come with a hose to get the greywater down the drain (don’t forget to hook it up or you’ll flood your floor). Some models don’t even require electricity — you pull a cord repeatedly instead — which is perfect for the RVers with a modest battery bank who wants to launder off-grid.
As they’re small and portable, the load capacity is low, rarely more than 8 pounds. Consequently, these aren’t ideal for families or travels with high laundry requirements. The entire process is rather quick, however, with each load taking less than half an hour, including the time it takes to put the washed clothes on the line.
- Don’t require installation
- Many models don’t need electricity
- Very reasonably priced
- Each load gets washed and dried quickly
- Doesn’t need much water
- Can easily be moved between RVs
- Can’t be fixed in place
- Can only wash minimal loads
- Many models require manual work
Using Your RV Washer Dryer Off-Grid
While most RVers will plug into the shore power (the electrical grid at an RV park or home) to use their washer dryer combo, those with more advanced electrical setups may be able to run their machine while boondocking. Non-portable (single-drum/stackable) washer dryer combos have high power requirements, however, so if off-grid laundering with these is a necessity, you need to ensure your rig is up to the challenge. Portables, on the other hand, work well with more primitive setups.
The first thing you need to consider is the wattage (W), or in other words, how much power the machine uses. RV washer dryer combos typically run between 150 and 1500 watts. If laundering off-grid, you need to ensure your inverter is capable of inverting the required wattage from your 12-24V (DC) battery system to the 120V (AC) system that runs most of your appliances.
Inverters are rated with a maximum peak wattage; examples include 1000W, 1500W, 3000W, and 5000W; be sure the wattage of your washer dryer is much lower than your inverter. However, the maximum wattage of the inverter needs also to be higher than all the appliances you will be using at the same time—factor in your toaster, kettle, fan, TV, etc. And finally, you’ll generally need a pure sine wave inverter for a washer-dryer, as the other types could damage the complex electrical system.
The Battery Bank
The second key thing to consider is your battery bank, which is measured in Amp Hours (ah). As washer dryer combos draw quite a lot of power, they’re going to drain your batteries fairly quickly. If your batteries rarely have much juice to spare, then you should look at expanding your battery bank before trying to run a non-portable washer dryer off-grid. Mighty Max makes superb AGM deep cycle batteries, while SHUNBIN does superb lithium batteries (you can’t mix and match the battery types, so go with the same variety you’ve already got installed). Before buying these, consult an auto-electrician to determine whether it’s feasible to install more batteries in your RV.
Keeping Your Batteries Charged on the Road
You’ve got three options for keeping your batteries charged up on the road:
- A DC to DC charger uses your vehicle’s alternator to charge your batteries as you drive (REDARC make a good option)
- Solar panels and the associated controller will draw power from the sun to recharge your battery bank. However, they aren’t especially useful when it’s overcast, or you’re parked in the shade (Renogy are a well-regarded brand).
- A generator will charge your batteries and can even power your 120V system while boondocking. Opting for a high wattage model will let you run your air conditioning, washer dryer, and other power-hungry appliances in the remote wilderness. Still, it’s proper RV etiquette to consider how the noise pollution may affect your neighbors (Champion make a great wattage generator that doesn’t make too much noise).
Vented Versus Non-Vented Washer Dryer Combos
Non-portable RV washer dryer combos fit into two categories: vented and non-vented. Every seasoned RVer knows the vented machines are ideal; however, it may not be possible to install one on your rig.
Note that portable washer dryers don’t have vents because they don’t have a tumble dry function; they use spin-drying instead.
Vented Washer Dryer Combos
These systems draw in air from the RV, heat it up, and tumble it through your laundry before sending it out of an external exhaust pipe into the open-air. Although the process is fast, easy, and energy-efficient, there’s one major caveat: you need to have someone drill a hole for the exhaust pipe if there isn’t already one there. There might not be a suitable place to install an exhaust vent on your rig, and even if there is, you’ll still need to pay a technician to set it up for you.
The Splendide WD2100XC is our favorite single-drum vented washer-dryer.
Non-Vented Washer Dryer Combos
The non-vented varieties, on the other hand, heat the air within the drum to tumble dry your clothes. As a result, a considerable amount of steam forms within the drum, which the machine cools using cold water on the outside. The excess water from the steam is pumped into your RV’s grey water tank.
The drawback here is non-vented systems take much longer to perform the same task and require more electricity and water to run.
The Splendide WDC7100XC is our top pick for a non-vented RV washer dryer.
Installing an RV Washer Dryer Combo
Can you install an RV washer dryer combo yourself, or do you need to get a professional involved? It depends on the type.
Installing a Single Drum Washer Dryer Combo
If you’ve got a late-model RV, you might be able to hook up a single-drum washer dryer combo yourself if the water and electrical connections are already in place. Just be sure to follow the manual carefully and remember to bolt the machine down to the floor. If the electrical and water hookups aren’t in place, you’ll need a professional to sort it out.
Installing a Stackable Washer Dryer
Stackable Washer Dryers are usually custom-fit into larger RVs, so the layman won’t be able to set these up on their own. Of course, if you happen to be a skilled plumber/electrician, then you might be up to the task.
Installing a Portable Washer Dryer Combos
These don’t require installation at all, which helps keep the costs right down. Just plug them into your electrical hookup, fill them with water, and you’re good to go.
How to Winterize Your RV Washing Machine
If you plan on storing your RV in an area where the temperature dips below 32F, then you must winterize your washer-dryer machine. Otherwise, it will get destroyed when the water expands into ice (you’ll also need to do this for your RV’s water system). In a nutshell, the process involves pumping anti-freeze into the system, then flushing it out again when you’re ready to use it in spring. However, as all washer dryer combos are different, you’ll need to consult your manual to see the precise steps.
Alternatively, a professional RV servicing company like Lazy Days can do the whole thing for you for a couple of hundred dollars.
Handy Tips for Doing Laundry in Your RV
Doing laundry on the road isn’t quite as simple as at home and may require a little extra planning and preparation to pull off. The following handy hints should help lighten the load (pun intended).
Avoid Doing the Heavy-Duty Stuff Yourself
Washing your blankets, comforters, jackets, and other bulky items can be a hassle in an RV, especially if you’ve got a small portable machine. Veteran travelers prefer to save these for the RV park washing machine.
Ensure Everything Is Hooked up Properly
One loose nut or a stray grey water hose will result in an awful soapy mess all over your lovely carpet. Double-check everything is as it should be and enlist the help of an expert if you’re unsure.
Read the Instruction Manual
Although RV washer dryers aren’t particularly hard to operate, it’s worth reading through the manual to get the gist of their inner-workings.
Washers Work as a Dirty Clothes Hamper
Store your smelly laundry inside the washing drum to save space. And when it comes time to wash, it’s already there waiting to go.
Electricity and Water Don’t Mix
Make sure your hands and any clothes are completely dry before playing around with a live current.
Use High-Efficiency Detergent
Look for the HE (high efficiency) label on your laundry detergent as the regular stuff won’t cut it on an RV washing machine.
The Best RV Washer Dryer Combo: Final Thoughts
The best RV washer dryer combo depends on your laundering requirements, budget, and the existing layout and features of your rig. Today we’ve covered the three main types—single-drum, stackable, and portable —plus provided a wealth of information on how to launder off-grid, how to install a washer dryer in your RV, and and the key points to consider before making a purchase, among other things.
Keep the information contained in this guide in mind and carefully consider your existing setup and laundry requirements before selecting one of the options on our list. That way, you’ll find the ideal washer dryer combo for your rig and enjoy years of hassle-free washing to come. Happy road-tripping, folks.