Here is a case of a good owner getting stuck with bad architect or contractor work. We share these not to pick on the owner or his team but as a lesson that we are happy to help early in the design process to make your laundry room function better and be cheaper to build.
Stacked Crossover washer and dryer
Laura is a sharp laundromat operator in Mustang, OK. She chose to replace one old washer that she was using as a greaser and also add in three new machines.
Despite being in the basement and having one inch clearance on a freight elevator we got this 120 lb. Milnor dryer installed before lunch. That's a half-day of the dryer being down for a changeover. Not bad.
A good looking set of washers and dryers for a new Springhill Suites. The soft-mount, "H", 450 g-force washers help make up a bunch of capacity for the small pad the architect gave them.
If you are looking for CAD drawing (.dwg) files or BIM objects you can find them at Pellerin Milnor's ARCAT page here (arcat.com).
Milnor also has some nicely organized resources on their site (milnor.com).
Finally, sizing machines to the amount of linens produced by hotels or nursing homes is something most distributors will do for free. We are certainly happy to do it for you. For example, knowing the room count and hotel brand we can tell you what size of machines you need to keep up with demand. This goes on to influence what type of room you need to build.
Thanks for visiting us to learn more about washers for veterinarian clinics and animal hospitals. Below is additional info about these washers. Please contact us at 405.424.4318 or email@example.com to get a quote.
The washers most popular for clinics and animal hospitals are:
Capacity Model Example load List price* (including base)
20 lb. W720co 3 blankets, 6 towels, 4 surgical gowns $5,065
30 lb. W5130N 5 blankets, 6 towels, 6 surgical gowns $6,968
45 lb. W5180N 8 blankets, 8 towels, 6 surgical gowns $8,914
*We think of list price as a starting point. When you call for a quote we will usually discount this.
Bases are used in most applications. Without a base ten inches of concrete is necessary. The base also elevates the machine to a comfortable operating height and allows for drainage slope.
Installation is done by our trained technicians. We usually bring the machine in on a pallet jack, secure it to the floor, and check start up if services are available. We are not licensed to perform plumbing, electrical, or venting work. These washers can use existing, home-style, hose bibs for the inlet hoses. The washers need a three inch drain. A competent plumber can provide an adapter to a home-style hook-up line lower in the wall. Commonly, the washers plug into 208-240 volt / 1 phase outlets but come in multiple voltage, phase, and wiring configurations.
Water temperature can be controlled and reported by the machine.
A smart customer of ours who is a keen operator recently upgraded his stacked dryers. The dryers were only eight years old. The benefits of upgraded equipment early like this are many:
- You are operating under warranty more. If you replace at 8 years and 5 of those years were under warranty then you are only paying for parts for 3 years.
- Service costs rise as the equipment gets older. You eliminate that cost by upgrading quicker.
- Newer equipment intimidates potential competitors. Would you rather put in a laundromat next to a run-down laundromat or a laundromat with shiny, new equipment?
- Customers like the new equipment.
FOR THE TIRE KICKERS
Laundromat equipment will cost anywhere from $75K-550K based on size and you should hope to make $50K-250K in revenue. That is not a promise of future returns.
STEP ONE: MEET THE DISTRIBUTOR
To build a laundromat you are going to need a lot of information and help. Please call us and let us have a kickoff meeting. At Arrow Machinery, we are a low-pressure distributor; however, we’d like to be involved from the start to help you make the right decisions.
STEP TWO: LOCATION HUNT
If you are a property owner this step is about gauging how your location can perform.
If you are a business in search of a location this is more about what to look for. A real estate broker would be involved at this point.
- High population. 100K+ in a five-mile radius
- Low to medium income. An average income of under $55K is preferred
- High percentage of renters. 40% or more is good
- Minimum ten-year lease
- Two five year options
- Rent increases tied to cost-of-living
- Plenty of parking
- Correct size?
- Complimentary retail is good. Check cashing, auto parts store, pawn shops, and dollar stores are good.
- Maximum glass front exposure
STEP THREE: EQUIPMENT MIX
You will be locked in to what you pay for rent but what equipment you choose does affect your cost structure. Water, gas, electricity, and repairs depends on your equipment choice.
Second, you don’t want to be over-equipped or under-equipped for your market. Total washing capacity matters.
Next, the blend of equipment, from small load capacity machines to high capacity machines matters more than you think to the bottom line. Larger machines mean more loads per square foot. Larger machines also draw in customers who need to do loads larger than their home washer such as blankets and sleeping bags. Often the margin on large machines can be greater.
Are you going to go with a coin or card system? They each have their strengths and weaknesses. Customers historically think of laundromats as coin-operated. Card systems make collecting and counting money from your laundromat easier. Card systems also offer the benefit of float. It is about choosing what is right for that individual laundromat.
Finally, choosing the right accessories for a laundromat improve its efficiency. Chairs and folding tables are a great part of the customer experience. Pre-fabricated racks help keep a clean look and can help future service technicians with access to the machines. Bill changers and carts matter on moving customers efficiently through the laundromat.
STEP FOUR: LAYOUT
Now it is the fun part, creating a layout. If you have done your homework on marketing and equipment mix this goes easier.
With Arrow Machinery we will provide layout drawings so you can see traffic flow and function. Some of the classic questions are: Do you have enough room behind the dryers to work on them? Are the washers broken up into “islands” so traffic can flow around them? Are there enough folding tables? Do you have enough space in the racks behind the washers? Have you eliminated as many columns or service drops as possible so that visibility is enhanced?
When your layout is complete you will have an equipment schedule and the specifications needed to compile plumbing, electrical, and venting.
STEP FIVE: FINANCIAL PLANNING
This is not a proforma but does lead to you coming up with the information to make financial projections with your accountant, lawyer, or financial professional.
Starting with your equipment list we come to a pricing mix. With pricing and turns-per-day you’ll know your projected revenue.
There are alternate income opportunities to consider such as bundle wash and vending.
Based on the equipment we can project utility costs. With the location work already done we can also plug in rent. Labor depends mostly on the hours your plan to stay in operation. Other costs include insurance, security, and maintenance.
Finally, we can look at financing. Laundrylux provides great financing for Electrolux and Wascomat products.
STEP SIX: INSTALLATION PLAN
Now we are ready to place your equipment order. Arrow can coordinate equipment delivery around your construction delays. We have experienced technicians that can help install your equipment quickly and correctly. Tools and know-how make a big difference.
Based on the pieces of equipment and your layout we can fairly well estimate how long it will take to install your laundromat.
Monte Potts and Ken Knodel teamed up for this new installation in NE Oklahoma. The generous pad made installation easy. The space between the washers can be used to store chemicals.
Another new install for a new hotel. These soft-mount EX washers can go up to 300 g-force. The extra water extraction helps reduce load on the dryers and shorten cycle time. They also have better programming including Smart Dosing and Automatic Water Savings.
For a new Hampton Inn we installed two American Dryer AD-120i 120 lb. capacity dryers. The AD-120i's look pretty slick with their chrome and futuristic lettering. Both of these had a fire suppression system, went to a lint collection system, and were wired to a automatic louver.
Arrow did a new hotel laundry room in southeast Oklahoma.
Here is an example of a great laundry room design. This is a nursing home facility. Note that the laundry has been split into two rooms: one for soiled linens that contains the washers and one for clean linens that contains the dryers.
The washer room has plenty of space in front of the washers, is clean, is well-lit, has room behind the washers for repair work, and is walled off from the clean room.
We got in a dryer that had caught fire. In typical fashion it was caused not by the machine malfunctioning but smoldering rags.
Someone read 8-10" on a plan and just decided to make the concrete pad 18". We got these Wascomat washers installed anyway.
We removed a pair of huge Washex washers from a large hotel in OKC. One was a 180 lb machine and the other 230 lb. Both were from the 80s and weren't lacking in steel.
The machines, because they drained in the center, spanned a drain pit which made removal even more fun.
Because the hotel had filled in their loading dock the washers had to be taken out a side door. The larger machine needed its top cut off to fit.
The hotel went with Milnor washers and new dryers. This will allow them to bring laundry back in-house and save money.