Monday, March 16, 2015

RV Laundry Woes

The Quest for Quarters

Coin-op Laundry Sign
Our RV isn't equipped with a washer and dryer so we realized we would need to use the coin-op laundry at the RV park or a laundromat to do our wash.  The RV park where we are living has a nice laundry room and it is just a short walk up the road.  I used apartment house laundry rooms and laundromats before I owned my own home umpteen years ago so I didn't think it would be a big deal.  Been there, done that - I can do it again!  But when you've owned your own home for over 40 years, including your own own washer and dryer, it is easy to forget those long ago laundromat irritations.

Bag of Quarters for the coin-op laundry
The laundry room doesn't have a change machine, so we find ourselves on a constant quest for quarters!  We do most of our banking online or through ATMs, so we seldom have any reason to go into a bank  until now.  To skip an extra stop at a bank, every time we go into a grocery store, we ask if we can trade a $10 bill for a roll of quarters - sometimes they will - sometimes not.

I find myself putting a $5 bill into vending machines and pressing the coin return without buying anything to get $5 in quarters.  I've become a quarter hoarder!

I've started to measure the cost of doing laundry measured in quarters. The washing machines cost 5 quarters per load.

Coin Operated Washing Machine

The dryer costs 4 quarters for 1 hour of drying time.  A total of 9 quarters to wash and dry a load.  I look at my plastic baggie of quarters - do I have enough?

Coin Operated Dryer
Then there was the week (or was it 2 weeks) when 3 out of the 5 dryers in the laundry room were out of order.  During that time, when I needed to do laundry, I set my alarm to get up early so I could be the first one to put my clothes in the washer.  Then I could be sure there would be a working dryer available when my clothes were done in the washing machine.

Out of Order Dryers
In defense of the RV park, I think the manager called for repairs promptly, but apparently it took some time for a repair service to schedule an appointment or there were parts that needed to be ordered before the repairs could be completed.

The lesson here is don't turn into a quarter hoarder!    If you think you may ever want to go on extended trips or live in your RV full time, I would look for a model with a washer and dryer.  Since I  don't have that option, I am considering purchasing a small portable dryer, does anyone have any experience with the one pictured below?

Any other compact washer or dryer recommendations?