By Russ and Tiña De Maris
New RVers contemplating purchasing their first rig often ask how important it is to have a washer/dryer in the rig.
Wow, there’s a loaded question if ever there was one. If you opened this one to reader commentary, the answers would likely make your head spin. Consider us agitators, but we tend to buck the tide and we say, send that washer down the drain! Of course, our leanings in this matter are all in favor of no machines because we’re so addicted to boondocking. For you newbies, “boondocking” means taking your RV far away from utility hookups.
In the boondocking world, resources like water and electricity are precious, and getting rid of drain water is a big deal. Every load of clothes run through an in-RV washer means not only fresh water used but gray water produced. Since we have to lug both fresh and gray, that’s a lot of extra work. All that notwithstanding, the average in-RV washer/dryer unit isn’t all that large in terms of capacity, and you can spend a lot of time fussing around doing multiple loads.
Consider too, the extra weight you’re lugging around. If you pull your rig about, the weight of the machines can leave you hung out to dry when you get to the gas station.
Now that we’ve drawn the battle lines, there are plenty of RVers, even some boondockers, who would call us out on this one. They feel the convenience of having your own clothes cleaning apparatus far outweighs those disadvantages we’ve outlined. Without having their Maytags they’re afraid they may take a tumble in terms of time at the Laundromat. Others hold the resale value of your RV will be higher with these units, rather than a vacant hole (even if you fill it with shelves or other storage).
Taking all things into consideration though, it may just be a wash.