How can I make my laundry room more accessible?

Here are some tips for making your laundry area more accessible:
  • Locate the laundry area on the main floor if possible. Is there a closet area where a washer and dryer would fit? Think outside the box. Washers and dryers now come in smaller sizes and are stackable. If you choose to stack your machines, make sure you can operate them from a seated position.
  • Create a comfortable work space. If you cannot move your laundry area to a more easily accessible main floor location, create a space with a low shelf for folding clothes, a padded floor mat, and a comfortable chair with reading material where, rather than making multiple trips up and down stairs, you will be comfortable waiting for the wash to be done.
  • Use a wheeled laundry cart, hamper, or laundry basket to move heavy clothing (clean or dirty) from room to room. Make your life easier by teaching children to sort and fold their own clothes; use different-colored baskets for sorting darks, lights, and whites.
  • Install a laundry chute to a lower-level laundry area. If that is not possible, place a laundry basket or hamper in a location at the bottom of the stairs where your family can just toss dirty clothes; in this way, you do not need to carry heavy baskets of clothing down to the laundry area. Once cleaned, let family members retrieve and put away their own clothing.
  • Replace a top-loading washer with a front-loading model. A front-loading machine is easier to use by someone in a wheelchair and has the added benefit of using less water. Keep in mind that you cannot add forgotten dirty items to a front-loading washing machine once it has been started.
  • Raise your washer and dryer. Build a platform under your front-loading washer and dryer to raise them 18 inches off the floor; this height is more comfortable for both people who are standing and for those in a seated position. Build a drawer into your platform to store laundry or other supplies. Be sure to add child locks on cabinets and drawers that hold potentially harmful products.
  • Vent the dryer to outside -- especially if it is a gas dryer. And, don’t forget to clean out dryer vents to the outside once or twice a year.
Home Accessibility (300 Tips for Making Life Easier)

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Home Accessibility (300 Tips for Making Life Easier)

Written by the best-selling author of Multiple Sclerosis: 300 Tips for Making Life Easier and Parkinson's Disease: 300 Tips for Making Life Easier, Home Accessibility: 300 Tips for Making Life...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.