We had a long trip planned to Arizona for our son’s wedding. In order to bring all the decorations we were hoping to use and the materials for the chuppah, and to be able to be there for an extended time before and after the date we had decided months before to go in the RV. I reserved a two week spot at a small rv park located between the condo and the wedding venue. Then I prepped the RV for a long trip. We had the truck checked out mechanically and besides fixing the rear brakes we had a suspension upgrade.
Several larger RV’s that are prepped for longer trips have washing machines included. Usually in a special closet built for them. Sometimes they are an all in one washer/condensing dryer although condensing dryers are notoriously slow to dry clothes. Some are the typical stacked apartment units that run the dryer on 110 volts.
I looked online at small washing machines for what seemed like months. I found several types of small washers. There were twintub types that washed on one side and spun about half a load at a time on the other. There were machines that had an insertable spinner that washed first then after removing the clothes spun again a smaller amount of each wet load. A few actually spun the same load after washing. These were often labeled all in one machines. But most of these were not automatic. The water had to be filled and drained, once for wash, then for rinse, then spin. Some specified only cold water. These machines could be very small holding only a few lightweight items or a bit larger usually measured from 2-17 lbs in clothes instead of volume. Full automatic was another category with cycles like larger machines that ran wash, rinse, spin all at once. These machines are larger from about 1-3 cu ft.
I was searching for the most automatic machine I could that would also fit in the RV closet.
The inside of the closet is 16”w x 23”d but the door opening was only 15 5/8 inches. Except for the tiniest, most machines of all types were too big in at least one dimension for the closet.
I read that Laundry Alternative made the best stand alone clothes spinner. They also made a very nice all automatic machine for sale on Amazon that was too large for the closet.
But when I searched the products on the web site I found exactly what I wanted. This machine had the crucial measurement to fit inside the closet.
But it also had many features that none of the other machines I researched had. Instead of 2-3 wash cycles it has 10. Two actually heat the water in the machine and the diaper cycle not only heats the water very hot but does two rinses. At the end of each type of cycle the washer spins to a very effective damp dry.
Another feature I like is the double lid system. The inner lid latches in place on the internal tub and the larger lid closes over that helping to insure no water is spilled.
This is a 1 cu ft capacity washer rated at 7 lbs of wash dry weight. That is about a quarter of a regular load at home. I filled the tub with a quarter of the dirty clothes in our folding laundry bag and did four loads. It was very easy to tell when the inner tub was full. I also washed a set of sheets and also the towels but I used the rv park washer for the mattress pad. The machine runs at only 32 db, astonishingly quiet.
I had to order a set of faucet adapters to get the right combination for the hose to attach to the RV kitchen sink. I also extended the hose a little bit with a 12” piece I had saved from an old RV water filter. The hose is equipped with a fast connect coupling, I leave that on the faucet and hookup is fast and easy.
One item bought in preperation for using the washing machine on the road was not necessary this trip because we had full hookups, a sewer, water, and electrical connection at oir campsite. The washing machine uses about 10-15 gallons of water for a load. The gray tank holds 26 gallons. That would require a place to put extra water until it could be dumped properly in the disposal. A famous product for this is the Barker ”Blueboy” now known simply as the Barker tote.
I bought ours from Camping World because I had a coupon. Unfortunately I tried the largest size since it could hold both tanks of waste water but it was so big I could not handle it myself. I returned it and bought the next smaller size. 32 gallons instead of 42 gallons. I investigated a few ideas to carry the tank. Originally I wanted to put it in the basement storage but it was too large. I found a bumper bracket instead also from Camping World
The bumper on the RV had been replaced with a welded steel version that is stronger than the original so I was not worried that it could not carry 37 extra pounds. The tank is strapped to the metal arms.
This tank works like a wagon to haul waste water to the dump station. It can even be towed.
The piece de resistance is the small electric dryer that fits in the storage area. We dont have to hang our wet clothes or even beach towels if we have power-generator or plug in. The inverter probably would not handle it.
I bought this dryer several years ago hoping to mount it behind our smaller RV but never tackled the project.
The washing machine is a welcome upgrade because I didn’t have to haul the clothes anywhere and could do other projects while it was washing.