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Can Washer and Dryer Be on Same Circuit? (Read This First!)

Wearing unclean, stinking clothes will make it harder to blend into society, and even wearing slightly damp garments might bring further health problems.

Most people throughout the world rely on sunlight to dry their clothes, but if you live in a snowy area, this may be difficult.

You’d need a washer for filthy clothing and a dryer to remove the moisture. So the question may arise: why not connect the washer and dryer to the same circuit? Can they both run at the same time? Let’s find out.

Can the washer and dryer be on the same circuit?

Both the washer and dryer are necessary household appliances, and it is convenient to keep them together. These electrical gadgets consume a large amount of power, however, as long as the total requirement is less than 1kw(1000w), they can be connected to the same circuit.

Usually, a washer draws 400 to 1000 of wattage and the overall consumption is less than 10 amp, so the circuit provided in general households is well suited with this equipment.

However, when it comes to running the washer and dryer together, it’s a completely different scenario. The amount of amp and wattage consumption increases, voltage requirement changes, and the circuit may get overwhelmed and act unpredictably.

Different types of dryers may also become an important variable in the success or utter failure in such situations.

Washer & electrical dryer:

When a washer and electric dryer are connected to the same circuit then the dryer will take over the system.

Where a washer will usually run on 120 volts and draw 10 amp or less, the electrical dryer requirements will be far greater.  An electric dryer will work on 240 volts and generally draw in 7 to 30 amps.

So relying on the same circuit for both washers and dryers may not work at all.

That being said, if you find an energy-efficient dryer that runs on the same voltage and takes in fewer amps compared to the washer then using the same circuit for both pieces of equipment may be possible.

Washer & gas dryer:

Gas dryers are known for their efficiency and running on any regular electrical setup. A gas dryer will require 120 volts and draw in 4 amps or less.

So the general requirements are quite remarkably compatible when you are trying to run both washers and dryers on the same circuit.

The gas dryer will be better, faster than the electric dryer. So going for a washer and gas dryer set up is strongly advised.

Do washer and dryer need separate circuits? Do the washer and dryer need a dedicated circuit?

It would be strongly advised to use a 20 amp or a 30 amp dedicated circuit for the washer and dryer, their high power consumption demands a dedicated circuit.

However, the individual circuit for the dryer or washer will depend on the electricity consumption of the equipment. If the washer and dryer together consume less than 1000 watts then it’s possible to connect both of them in the same 20 amp circuit.

That being said, nowadays most electrical appliances, especially dryers consume more than 1.4kw, so it will be ideal to use two separate circuits for washers and dryers.

Not using a dedicated circuit or not separating them even after the 1000 Watt limit is crossed may put a negative effect on the efficiency of both washer and dryer.

When can you have a washer and dryer on the same circuit?

You can utilize the same circuit only if it is capable of withstanding the combined load of the washer and dryer. These electronic appliances consume a huge chunk of power, and the circuit has to provide a constant flow of electricity to maintain efficiency.

The NEC (National Electrical Code) recommends a 20 amp circuit, the receptacle number maybe two or more, also the ground fault circuit interrupter protection is mandatory.

Usually, a 20 amp circuit is sufficient but if the power consumption is too high using a 30 amp circuit or even higher may get the job done. 

4 Reason why you cannot use washer and dryer on the same circuit 

There can be multiple reasons why you cannot put the both together on a circuit. Let’s get to know them.

Compatibility issues:

A regular washer runs on 120 volts and pulls in around 400 to 1000 watts, but an electrical dryer needs 240 volts to function.

So the same circuit for both equipment may not bring fruitful results. The gas dryer runs on 120 volts but the installation and maintenance can be a bit of a hurdle.

Excessive load:

Usually most households use a 15 or 20 amp circuit for appliances. However, any regular dryer alone will consume 7 to 30 amp and the washer will take in 10 amp at least.

Now you can’t expect a 20 amp circuit to provide more than its capacity, even if both washer and dryer consume 18 or 20 amp, it will be highly risky to put too much load on the circuit.

Experts suggest appliances should not be forcing a circuit to go beyond 80 percent of its load capacity. So using a washer and dryer in the same circuit should not be practiced.

Lack of efficiency:

Plugging both washer and dryer in the same circuit will overload it, hence directly affecting the efficiency.

As a 20 amp circuit won’t be sufficient to sustain the required load for the washer and dryer at the same time, using a different dedicated circuit is the solution.

Running any electrical appliance on a circuit that can’t provide the necessary power will be a great waste of time and money, you might also damage the equipment.

Lead to fire risks:

In the worst-case scenario, circuit overload and damaged equipment can lead to fire risks.

It could be avoided if someone follows the NEC (National Electrical Code) and uses a dedicated individual circuit for the washer and dryer.

Can I run the washer and dryer at the same time on the same circuit?

It’s highly advisable not to follow such a practice. It’s safe to only load a circuit to 70 to 80 percent of its load capacity otherwise all sorts of bad things can happen.

Most of the time, the dryer requires a high wattage and high voltage circuit and a washer can run on a regular circuit, so using a different circuit is ideal.

That being said, it is not mandatory to always look for different circuits; if both washer and dryer have the same wattage and voltage requirement and their combined amp consumption doesn’t exceed the circuit’s 70 percent load capacity, you can plug and run them in the same circuit at the same time.

How to use a washer and dryer in one?

Only if you know all the possible disasters and all the specs of your appliances, then you can choose to place them on the same circuit. Still you need to make sure that you maintain the below rules while placing them together.

Know about the details:

Before taking any action, you should be fully informed of all relevant parameters, such as load capacity, wattage volume, required voltage, and amp consumption.

This knowledge will assist you in making a decision and anticipating the outcome. You’ve probably heard it a thousand times, and it should be the most obvious thing to everyone, but a big proportion of individuals utterly disregard it.

They assume that the circuit and machine are compatible without going through all the essential details. 

Upgrade if necessary:

As most households have 15 or 20 amp circuits, it would be better to upgrade them. A washer may intake 10 amp and a dryer 7 to 30 amp.

It’s better to know the amp demand of your machine and then upgrade to a 40 or 60 amp circuit. If your house electrical setup is suitable for a high capacity circuit then you can use a washer and dryer on the same one.

That being said, if your washer and dryer are energy-efficient and combined consumption is less than 1000 wattage then any regular circuit will do, you won’t have to go through any more hurdles on upgrading.

Go for the safest option:

If you tried everything but didn’t have enough information on the electric set up to make a decision, or if you don’t have the time or money to switch to a different circuit, you should go with the safest option.

Using a washer and dryer separately would be the safest thing to do. Such action won’t overload the circuit nor will it cause any sort of damage to the equipment.

Final Thoughts 

The washer and dryer can be connected to the same circuit as long as the cumulative demand is less than 1kw. Both pieces of equipment should always be stacked carefully. If any particular piece of equipment requires more than 1kw, switching to a separate circuit will be highly recommended.