Did you have your washer and dryer in the bathroom or kitchen but want to build a laundry area in an adjacent room? In this case, you might be wondering how to move the appliances to the other side of the wall. Is it possible? Do you need permits? Can you do it yourself?
Moving the washer and dryer to the other side of the wall involves opening the pipes in the adjacent room to hook up the appliances. To do that, you will have to break the drywall, flip the connections, then repair the wall before installing your washer and dryer.
How To Move a Washer And Dryer To Other Side Of Wall
You can cut costs if you have the skills to do everything yourself. If that’s the case, follow the quick steps below.
1. Gather the necessary tools and supplies
It shouldn’t be a surprise that moving appliances to the other side of the wall requires quite a bit of work. Before getting started, gather the tools and materials below.
- Circular saw
- Masonry saw blades
- New plumbing hookups
- Plumbing pipe caps
- PVC pipes
- Soldering gun (optional)
- Solder (optional)
- 240-volt circuit box
- Vent duct
- Adjustable wrench
- Sanitary tee or 90-degree elbow
- Hose clamps
- Wall paint
- Putty knife
- Protective equipment
2. Unhook and move the appliances
Assuming you’ve already prepared the space in your new laundry, turn off the water from the washer’s shut-off valve and turn on the electricity. Most hardwired appliances have a separate circuit in the circuit breaker, so simply flip it off.
Once done, unhook the washer from the waterline and the dryer from the vent, unfastening the respective connections. You may have to use an adjustable wrench or a pair of pliers to do this.
After you’ve unhooked each appliance from the plumbing system, remove the front access cover and locate the metal junction box (usually located on the lower right side of each appliance). Test the voltage with a voltmeter to make sure the power is off, then remove the wire nuts and pull the wires out.
If you have newer appliances, simply unplug them from the wall outlet they are plugged into and move the machines into the new laundry room.
If you have a gas dryer, you’ll also have to shut off the gas and unhook it from the gas line. Use a cap to close the line.
3. Remove old hookups and repair the wall
Considering that you’ll have to cut the drywall on the other side of the wall to flip the hookups, you can simply use a saw to cut off the old connections flush with the wall.
Cover the gaps with caulk and sand the surface, then prime the surface and paint it in the color of your walls.
4. Access the plumbing system
Now, go to the room where you want to install the washer and dryer and access the plumbing system in the wall. To do that, you’ll have to cut out a rectangle big enough to give you access to the pipes. Use the circular saw and cut out the drywall section.
5. Flip the water hookups and drain
Most washing machines have two hookups for the hot and cold water, and you’ll have to flip both of them.
To do that, cut out the portion of pipe connected to the original hookups with a hacksaw. Sand the surface and install a sanitary tee on each pipe. Seal the pipe with PVC cement or solder it together if you have copper rather than PVC pipes.
The empty slot of your sanitary tee must face forward toward you. After you’ve sealed the joints, install a stub-out for each water line.
Once you’re done with the supply lines, cut the portion of the drain pipe to which your washer was connected and replace it with a 90-degree elbow facing toward you. Make sure the horizontal pipe is long enough to allow for an easy connection of the drain hose.
6. Flip the dryer vent and gas line
Use the same method employed for flipping the drain pipe to change the position of the vent opening to 180 degrees.
If you have a gas dryer, you must also flip the gas connection. Don’t do it yourself. Working around gas lines is dangerous, and all related work must be carried on by a professional. Hire a licensed gas plumber or contact the gas company to get the job done.
7. Install a new 240-volt box
If your appliances are hardwired, you’ll have to install a new electrical box in the wall before closing the drywall. You can do that yourself by simply hooking the wires to the box, respecting the color code for each connection. Otherwise, hire an electrician to flip it for you.
Don’t forget that you also have to install a ground wire connector for each appliance; thus, you should consider hiring an electrician if you’re not sure how to do it.
8. Repair the drywall
Once you’ve flipped all connections and installed a new electrical box, if needed, cut out a patch from a new drywall sheet and close the gap you’ve opened.
You’ll have to cut holes in the right places to provide access to the stub-outs. For this reason, you should pay attention when measuring to prevent errors. Use a hole saw to bore the necessary openings, then place the patch over the empty rectangle.
Seal with caulk and let it dry, then sand the surface. Prime and paint in the color of your walls – or tile the patch if you have tiled walls.
9. Install a laundry standpipe
Similar to the fixtures in your home, the washer needs a P-trap to prevent sewer gases from leaking into your home.
The P-trap is then connected to a standpipe to which you’ll eventually connect the washer’s drain hose.
Installing the trap and standpipe is easy. Start with the trap and connect it to the drain stub-out. Secure the connection with a compression washer and a ring nut.
Install the standpipe at the other end of the trap following the same procedure. Place a plumbing cap on top of the drain line until you hook up the appliance.
10. Install the washer and dryer
Now that all connections and hookups are flipped, it’s time to install the appliances. Start with the washer and hook it up to the cold and hot water supply lines. Secure the connections with hose clamps, then connect the drain hose to the standpipe you just installed. Fix it with hose clamps. Wire in the washer or plug it into the wall socket.
Place the dryer in its position and hook it to the vent duct. Plug it in, then turn on the water and electricity. Check that the appliances work properly and that there are no leaks. That’s it.
Is It Hard To Relocate Washer And Dryer?
Relocating a washer and dryer to the other side of the same wall isn’t very hard, but the operation requires some plumbing and electric knowledge. If you’re a beginner, check out the most problematic factors below and decide whether you should hire a contractor.
The first thing to consider when moving the dryer and washer to the other side of the wall is whether the appliances are hardwired or not.
Most modern appliances come with standard plugs and are plugged into a regular wall socket. However, older washers and dryers could be hardwired. In this case, you may have to install a new receptacle and make new electrical connections, which could be complicated if the electricity isn’t fed through the same wall.
If you don’t have experience and don’t mind replacing the hardwired appliances with new ones, you could be able to make the move easily if you have wall outlets already installed on the other side of the wall or in its proximity.
While flipping the water connections is easy, turning the drain box to 180-degrees could prove to be a tad more complicated. To do this, you should disconnect the tee or elbow and install a new one facing the other side of the wall.
However, things could go from complicated to easy if you already have a sink installed on the other side of the wall. In this case, you could install a wye fitting or sanitary tee and attach the new drain to it.
While relocating the vent hole isn’t very difficult, closing the existing opening requires extensive attention. If you don’t seal the opening the right way, the moisture and heat coming out of your dryer could end in the space between the walls.
This can lead to major issues, including a rotten drywall structure, mold, and mildew, as well as the development of airborne infections.
Closing up the old vent hole could also leave unsightly patches on the wall where the dryer is currently installed. If you don’t hide the spot behind furniture, you may have to replace a larger portion of drywall and refinish your room.
Do You Need A Permit To Move Washer And Dryer?
Whether or not you need a permit depends on your project. Do you have to install new plumbing or electric lines? Then you need a city and building permit. However, if you’re only flipping the hookups without installing new lines, then a permit might not be necessary.
The only way to know for sure is to ask a local plumber or the city council. Building permits, if necessary, will cost you between $30 and $150, depending on where you live and how extensive the restoration work is.
Estimated Cost To Move Washer and Dryer Hookups
Moving the washer and dryer hookups can cost you anywhere between $350 and $2,000. The more complex the work required, the more you’ll have to pay. The table below can give you an indication of costs:
|Cut-off valve installation||$10 - $30|
|New washer drain line||$360 - $1,840|
|New wall outlet||$100 - $150|
|New 240-volt plug||$500 - $600|
|Dryer gas line||$200 - $500|
|Dryer vent installation||$100 - $175|
Frequently Asked Questions
Ready to get the job done, but some questions still trouble you? Find out the answers below.
How much would it cost to move a laundry room upstairs?
Moving a laundry room upstairs is much more expensive than moving it on the other side of the wall. You’ll most likely have to budget for new plumbing and electric permits, as well as additional work.
On average, you can expect to spend about $6,000 to $14,800 for moving and installation, depending on your location and size of the room.
How do you lift a washing machine by yourself?
Lifting the washing machine by yourself (without helpers) is not recommended. Washing machines and dryers are heavy appliances, so attempting to lift them alone could result in injuries.
If you have a helper, unhook the washer from the water and electric connections and fasten the power cord to prevent tripping.
Go on one side of the washing machine and place your right hand in the upper corner. Bend down and grab the opposite lower corner with your other hand. Your helper should mirror your movements on the other side of the washing machine: right hand on the right top corner and left hand on the left lower corner (you could switch the position if it feels more comfortable).
Once you both have a good grip, lift the washer. The hand holding the top of the appliance will stabilize it. You can now move the washing machine where you want it or place it on a dolly for easier transportation.
How far should a washer and dryer be from the wall?
When installing your washer and dryer, keep in mind that you shouldn’t place them too close to the wall. The ideal distance is about six inches to ventilate the area.
Moving the washer and dryer to the other side of the wall isn’t complicated, but the operation requires plumbing and electrical skills. While most plumbing work is easy to carry out by yourself, you might need help with the electrical and gas work.
And keep in mind, you will have to pull permits for any new plumbing or electrical installation.