A washer and a dryer are two partners in crime that work best when close together (some are even on top of each other). However, having two different appliances on the same circuit can be a fire hazard especially if both units have high energy requirements.
As a general rule. you can plug a washer and a dryer on the same circuit as long as the the combined rated wattage for both units do not exceed 1,000W (1.0kW). This rule automatically rules out the use of electric dryers as their heaters are often rated at 1,500W (1.5kW) or even higher.
In this article, I will discuss the rules-of-thumb that you should follow and I will also give you the possible combinations of the different types of washers and dryers that can be plugged in to the same circuit simultaneously.
While modern house wiring can handle a high amount electrical power, it is still a good practice to have appliances with high power requirements to have their own dedicated circuits.
As a general rule, appliances with a wattage rating of 1,000W (1kW) should have their own dedicated outlet especially if the unit will be operating for a long duration. While air conditioners are one such appliance that have a high power requirement and are operated for a long period of time, washing machines are in the gray area as they usually have a low power requirement and are operated for an hour or two per wash.
Moreover, different types of washers and dryers have different power requirements. In my previous article about the average wattage of each type of washing machines, the data I’ve collected off of Meralco’s orange tag program shows that spin dryers need an average of 0.02 kWh of power to operate, while combo washer-dryers need an average of 5.39 kWh of power.
In the next section, I will show you a general guideline for mixing-and-matching the different types of washers and dryers that can be plugged into the same circuit.
I’ve created this table to show you the possible combinations of washers and dryers that can be plugged into the same circuit:
|Type||Spin Dryer||Gas Dryer||Electric Dryer|
|Single Tub (Semi-automatic)||⃝||⃝||х|
|Twin Tub (Semi-automatic)||⃝||⃝||х|
|Fully Automatic Top Load (Non-inverter)||⃝||⃝||х|
|Fully Automatic Top Load (Inverter)||⃝||⃝||х|
|Fully Automatic Front Load (Non-inverter)||⃝||∆||х|
|Fully Automatic Front Load (Inverter)||⃝||∆||х|
As you can see, due to the high power requirements of a washer dryer and an electric dryer, they should always have their own dedicated outlet to prevent overloading.
As for gas dryers, they only need a smaller amount of power to turn the motor and for the pilot light to ignite the gas used for drying. Hence, they can be paired to most washing machines on the same circuit with no problems.
However, if the gas dryer is being paired with a front load washer model (whether inverter or non-inverter), you should check the wattages of both the washer and the dryer model to see if it still below the 1,000W threshold. If not, then you should look for a dedicated receptacle for the dryer.
The wattage can be seen on the washing machine’s rating label. This label is normally located at the back of the unit. If you have a front load model, this sticker can be located on the inside of the washer door.
WARNING: If your unit has a built-in heater, DON’T plug it into an extension cord, even if it is an Extra Heavy Duty one. Safety first!
When in doubt, do not plug in a washer and a dryer in the same circuit. To prevent this issue from appearing, you should purchase a washing machine with a built-in dryer.
Also, if there are no other outlets in your laundry area, think twice before plugging your washer or your dryer to an extension cord as it can pose as a fire hazard.
Miguel Mores worked for 5 years as a member of the product management team for a home appliance company in the Philippines. He started 101appliance to answer the most common customer questions that he has encountered during his time in the industry. He now works in the digital marketing field and manages a small online bookstore on the side.