Laundry is as inevitable as death and taxes. Most people handle this in one of two ways: either they do their laundry at home or haul everything to their nearest laundromat.
Those of us who use the laundromat may be tempted to go out someday and invest time and money in picking out a high-quality washer and dryer set. However, stop to consider this – is it really right for you? What do home laundry units have over commercial varieties and vice versa?
We’re here to answer that question today. Let’s dive right in.
Laundromat: The Pros
Laundromat washers and dryers are typically larger than home units, which is fairly typical for any laundry service. With that in mind, that additional power and capacity mean it takes less time per cycle to get everything done. The laundromat machines are generally more durable because laundromats demand a lot more time per day than your typical home units.
Consider this, laundry facilities must have machines running constantly, anywhere from eight to 24 hours a day. The machines must be able to take a lot due to the sheer number of customers and loads a typical laundromat experiences from day to day.
Laundromat machines can generally handle more in terms of both load size and load frequency than their home counterparts. Given their larger capacity, laundromat machines may be suitable for washing bedding such as sheets, duvets, and duvet covers.
Let’s say you have a lot of laundry to do. Maybe you have a big family and there’s a lot to do on a regular basis, or maybe you’ve fallen behind on your regular laundry. Thanks to the bigger machines, you can finish the laundry, cutting down on the number of loads you will need to process and therefore cutting down on the amount of time you’ll need to spend doing laundry.
It takes time to pay off the cost of doing laundry at home when you first start; dryers and washers are not cheap by any means. While washers and dryers do eventually pay for themselves, the laundromat can be a cheaper way to go over quite a long time, depending on how much you have paid or are willing to pay for home units of your own.
Laundromat: The Cons
The laundromat can make an already tedious chore even more difficult. While the convenience of more powerful machines can’t be denied, hauling laundry from your home to your car to the laundromat and back again comes with its price.
Even if you only have to do one or two loads of laundry, you’re still having to lug everything back and forth, and while you’re at the laundromat, it’s not always easy getting the work done that you’d like to. If you are able to bring some work with you such as working on your laptop and so forth, that’s great. However, there’s the danger of those pricey (sometimes priceless) machines going missing if someone steals them or takes your laundry. Vigilance and common sense can largely prevent said theft, but the risk is inherently greater at laundromats given that it’s a public setting. It’s not as if you could even drive anywhere else to run some errands; unless you’re that confident in the security and safety of your clothes and other laundry, it’s best to stick around. This inability to move away or leave things unattended can be problematic if you have other things to do.
Home Laundry: The Pros
On the other hand, there is something to be said for the convenience of being able to do laundry from the comfort of your own home. Having a washer and dryer in the house means you don’t have to spend your time away from home when you could be either spending time with loved ones or doing work around the house. If you can multitask, why wouldn’t you?
All your laundry is essentially in one place if you do your laundry at home. Granted, sometimes the odd sock gets caught up in the shuffle of a load of sheets, but unlike the laundromat, laundry isn’t as suspect to go missing or get stolen.
With doing laundry at home, you’re not as liable to forget any crucial supplies or items you may have taken along with you if you’d chosen to do it at the laundromat instead.
Home Laundry: The Cons
Doing laundry at home isn’t without its flaws. Unless you spring for the extra cost (and we’ll touch on that momentarily) and have the room for it, standard washers and dryers are usually about 24 inches wide (about 61 centimeters) and as such, their capacity is quite limited compared to their commercial counterparts. Home washers and dryers are not especially good at handling bigger items, including bigger loads of small pieces of laundry as well as full duvets, blankets and more.
With that in mind, they process more and smaller loads just fine, but that lower capacity makes the chore take more time to get through the laundry of the day. If you generate a small amount of laundry, that can suit you just fine. However, if there’s quite a bit to do, it can take a while to do it at home.
Drying has a tendency to take the most time. Washing time is fairly standard, in all fairness, but drying time can take hours depending on what you’re trying to dry, the size of the load and so on.
If your home already came with a dryer and washer when you bought or rented it, great! If not, that additional upfront cost can be problematic even if you have a fair budget to work with.
Which is Better?
While the laundromat could potentially be more cost-effective depending on a number of factors and bigger loads can be processed, doing laundry at home is convenient, allows you to multitask with other housekeeping and can, in some cases be more convenient. It all breaks down to which one is right for you and your needs.