Can You Put A Tumble Dryer In A Cupboard?

If you’ve ever wondered whether it’s possible to put your tumble dryer inside a cupboard, you’re in the right place. 

The short answer is yes, you can. However, there’s more to it than just a simple “yes” or “no.” 

In this article, we’ll explore the reasons why, what types of dryers can go in cupboards, and important tips to guarantee safe and efficient operation.

Why Is It A Bad Idea To Put A Tumble Dryer In A Cupboard?

To be clear, an integrated tumble dryer will safely go in a cupboard (that’s what they’re designed for), but in this article we’re talking specifically about freestanding dryers. 

And while at first it might seem like a clever idea to stow your tumble dryer away in a cupboard to keep the laundry area tidy, it’s generally not a great plan, and here’s why:

Your Tumble Dryer Produces Heat and Moisture 

When it’s tucked inside a confined space like a cupboard, there’s a limited amount of air for the dryer to breathe. 

This can lead to increased humidity in the cupboard, creating a damp environment. The result? Unwanted guests in the form of mould and mildew.

There’s Not Enough Proper Airflow For Your Dryer 

The supply of cool air is what helps your dryer regulate its temperature, especially if it’s a heat pump or condenser dryer.  A cupboard limits the airflow, making it harder for the dryer to work efficiently.

Your Safety Might Be At Risk 

Placing your tumble dryer in a cupboard can be risky, especially if it’s near your central heating boiler. In the unfortunate event of a fire, the combination of dryer fumes and gas can lead to an explosion. 

Moreover, boiler cupboards usually don’t have ample space to ensure your tumble dryer is safely away from the boiler.

The Benefits Of Putting A Tumble Dryer In A Cupboard

Which Type Of Tumble Dryer Can You Put In A Cupboard?

While cupboards might not be the top choice for your tumble dryer, it can have its perks. It frees up space for other appliances, keeps the dryer well hidden and out of sight, and reduces the noise the machine makes when in use.

Now, if you’ve got limited space and the cupboard is your only option, you need to know what type of tumble dryer suits best. 

Condenser Dryers

These are the tumble dryers that you’ll typically find inside cupboards. Instead of requiring an external vent, condenser dryers collect moisture from your wet clothes. All you need to do is empty the water tank after each use. 

Remember, even though condenser dryers don’t need external venting, they still rely on good air circulation for efficient operation. So you’ll need to leave the cupboard doors open when your dryer is in use to let the air flow better.

Heat Pump Tumble Dryers

Heat pump dryers share similarities with condenser dryers. However, instead of just collecting moisture, they recycle and reuse the hot air generated during the drying process. 

Just like their condenser counterparts, heat pump dryers need good air circulation to work effectively. Keep that cupboard open!

Vented Dryers

It’s worth noting that vented tumble dryers, which require an external vent, are not suitable for cupboard placement. If you stick a vented dryer in a cupboard without a vent, the machine won’t work as it should. The hot, moist air will have nowhere to go, potentially leading to overheating and other issues.

Things To Keep In Mind When You Have A Tumble Dryer In A Cupboard

Tumble Dryer

Alright, let’s say you’ve decided to place your tumble dryer in a cupboard despite the challenges. Here are some important points to keep in mind:

  • Get The Right Cupboard Size
    Make sure your cupboard has ample space and ventilation to give your tumble dryer the room it needs to breathe. Good air circulation and a spacious cupboard are essential.
  • Make Sure There’s Good Air Circulation
    Good air circulation is important. Always keep the cupboard doors open when the dryer is in use to prevent overheating. Yes, it might result in a bit more noise, but it’s a small price to pay for safety and efficiency.
  • Schedule Regular Maintenance
    Check and clean your tumble dryer’s openings and vents regularly. The lint filter needs frequent cleaning to prevent lint buildup. Make sure your vents are not clogged to promote proper airflow. Regularly inspect the pipes to make sure there are no damages or safety issues.
  • You Can Save Energy With Proper Ventilation
    Insufficient ventilation can cause your tumble dryer to use more energy, resulting in higher electricity bills. Good air circulation is not just about safety; it also affects your wallet.
  • Let Your Dryer Rest And Cool Down Properly
    Avoid overloading your tumble dryer, and let it cool down properly after each use. Overloading can lead to inefficiency and excess wear and tear. Proper cooling is important to maintain your machine’s longevity.
  • Watch Out For Any Mould Growth
    Dampness from poor ventilation can lead to mould and mildew growth. These not only affect your clothes but can also pose health risks.
  • Avoid Placing Flammable Items Near Your Dryer
    Never place flammable items, such as clothes or cleaning supplies, near your tumble dryer, especially when it’s inside a closed space like a cupboard. Safety always comes first.

Alternative Places To Put Your Tumble Dryer Instead Of A Cupboard

If you’re concerned about placing your tumble dryer in a cupboard, there are alternative locations to consider. 

  • Laundry Room 
    If you have the space, a separate laundry room is a fantastic option. It gives your dryer room to breathe and keeps the noise and mess contained. It provides room not only for your tumble dryer but also for ironing and folding your clothes.
  • Garage 
    The garage can be a good spot for your dryer if it’s well-ventilated. Proper ventilation ensures that the hot, moist air produced during drying is released safely. This choice also frees up space in your living areas and keeps your home more organised.
  • Bathroom (for Washer Dryers)
    If you have limited space or want to centralise your laundry activities, your bathroom can be a convenient choice. This is particularly advantageous for “washer dryers” as they require water supply and drainage connections, which your bathroom is equipped with. 

    However, please remember that this setup is more useful for “washer dryers.” Regular tumble dryers don’t need a water supply or drainage, so this bathroom arrangement is not necessary for them. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I put a tumble dryer anywhere?

No, it’s important to consider proper ventilation and safety, so not anywhere is fit for a tumble dryer. 

Where is it safe to put a tumble dryer?

Safe places for a tumble dryer include a laundry room, a well-ventilated garage, or a bathroom if you have a “washer dryer”. Cupboards can work if they have adequate space and ventilation.

Do you need ventilation for a tumble dryer?

Yes, ventilation is important to prevent overheating and safe operation of most tumble dryers. Proper airflow is key for effective performance. Without it, the moisture can build up and lead to mould.

How much space do you need around a tumble dryer?

You should have enough space for proper ventilation and access to the dryer’s openings, so a spacious cupboard or room with good airflow is ideal. Check the manufacturer’s guidelines for specific space requirements.

What plumbing is needed for a tumble dryer?

For a regular tumble dryer, no special plumbing is needed. However, “washer dryers” require water supply and drainage connections, which can be found in places like bathrooms or laundry rooms.

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