Is it finally time to move your washing machine out of your basement? Relocating your washing machine will certainly make laundry easier – no more trucking laundry baskets up and down the basement steps.
Before making the big move, getting the new plumbing hookups installed for your washer is crucial. After all, a washing machine can be the biggest culprit of home flooding. According to the Institute for Business and Home Safety, 55 percent of flood damage caused by washing machines is due to an issue with the water supply hose. On average, those associated insurance claims run over $6,000.
The risks are why we recommend you call Plumbers 911 Maine and receive a referral to a top, local plumbing contractor who can relocate your washing machine hookups. A highly trained and highly skilled plumber will not only install new hoses, drains and water connections, but they can also move the washing machine and reconnect it.
Here is what you need to know about relocating a washing machine to an existing room (otherwise, the job will be much more demanding and require adding studs, drywall, lighting and a door, in addition to the steps below):
Permits are needed
Relocating a washing machine requires new plumbing and electrical hookups. The project will likely require a permit from the local building department, subject to the same codes as a new installation.
A licensed contractor referred by Plumbers 911 Maine will check and obtain the proper permits and expertly install all piping to code.
Installing the washing machine drain
A washing machine drain is typically two inches in diameter and starts with a vertical pipe known as a standpipe that connects to a P-trap at the bottom. The vertical pipe opens at the top and links to the washing machine’s drain hose. A vent must be within 60 inches of the P-trap. This line can connect to any drain line in the house two inches or wider in diameter.
According to the Uniform Plumbing Code, the P-trap must be between six and 18 inches above the floor, and the standpipe can extend up to 36 above floor level.
Installing the waterlines and valves
In modern washing machine connections, it is common to install hot and cold shutoff valves, and an inlet for the drain standpipe in a handy box mounted to the stud wall. This makes it easier to shut off the water if you have a flooding emergency.
Screw the washing machine hoses onto the shutoff valve like a garden hose. Make sure to install automatic shut-off valves that can stop water flow in the case of a leak.
It is also a good idea to install a water hammer arrestor to prevent damage to your washing machine when the internal valves quickly shut off the water. A water hammer happens when a pressure surge forces the water to change direction or stop abruptly. Water hammers are hard on pipes and can damage your machine, leading to leaks and expensive flooding problems.
Also, remember you will need to install an electrical line, per code, to power the washing machine in its new location.
Preparing your washing machine for the move
Before moving the washing machine, you will want to clean the drum and main lines. Run a cycle with laundry detergent when the device is empty. Once finished, leave the door on the washer open for a day or two to dry the components. Drying the parts will prevent any foul odors when you move the machine.
Moving the washing machine
Turn off the water line to the washing machine. Disconnect the hoses and open them up again to drain in a sink or bucket. Pull the drain hoses out of the standpipe.
Next, secure the washer drum with shipping bolts or transit bolts. Moving the washing machine can significantly strain the washer’s suspension system. Metal rods can be inserted into unique slots in the rear of the washer to secure the drum. Most washing machines come with shipping bolts, or you can order replacement bolts online.
Wrap the washing machine with three or four shipping blankets. Strap it to a dolly, and pull it up the stairs.
Need help? Call Plumbers 911 Maine
If the steps listed above are too much for you to handle, call Plumbers 911 Maine to relocate your washing machine. You will be referred to a local expert plumbing contractor, who can send over an expert to relocate the drains, water lines and plumbing connections according to code. A professional can help you avoid flood damage and ensure your washing machine works correctly.