Chicago-Although laundromats tend to provide greater washing and drying capacity in single-pocket washing machines, stacking devices have been in use for decades and still occupy an important position in many stores across the country.
This month, American Coin-Op invited several representatives of vending laundry equipment manufacturers to answer some questions about this particular equipment category and its place in the overall equipment portfolio.
Matthew Conn, senior manager of commercial laundry product development and marketing at Whirlpool, the parent company of ADC and Maytag: If you think about it, it’s real estate. They can free up space, make laundromats more comfortable for their consumers, or maximize their square feet. When you think about what you need to rent space…usually, this is the first benefit we hear when discussing stacks with customers.
If you consider this stack configuration, then from an ergonomic point of view, some people prefer (lower) items for consumer use. I think it’s usually difficult for people to get into higher pockets, but it’s worth weighing in.
Kevin Hietpas, Sales Director of Dexter Laundry: In any retail business (including laundry), profitability is related to maximizing production capacity (income per square foot). Stacked dryers have existed for many years, but until recently, real commercial stack washer/dryers have multiple capacities available.
Stacked dryers are a great way to increase drying capacity and make full use of available wall capacity. On the other hand, stacked washer/dryers provide laundry owners the opportunity to increase washing and drying capacity on the same floor space. This innovative technology can help owners think in different ways and find new ways to make the most of each space in their location.
These products provide creative laundromat owners with a wider range of store layout and design options. Now, with the ability to obtain higher production capacity (washing and drying) in a certain location, the owners can view the space in a good location, and they may not have considered it seriously due to the size or internal layout restrictions.
By using the new stacked washer/dryer option layout, we can increase the available washing and drying capacity by more than 30% in the same floor space while still maintaining a customer-friendly layout. These locations of different sizes or shapes are likely to be offered at very favorable rental rates.
Tod Sorensen, North American regional sales manager for Girbau, the parent company of Continental Girbau: The basic advantage of stack dryers is the double-pocket capacity under a given square foot. When choosing a typical 45-pound capacity stacker in a 75-pound capacity, single-pocket dryer, you will provide a smaller 20% coverage with a 20% dry capacity.
Stacked dryers can also be used to offset the increase in laundry rent, labor and operating costs, so as to achieve greater washing capacity and turnover in similar spaces.
Hietpas: Locations that need to maximize revenue generation due to high rental costs are always ideal for stacking equipment. Stacked washer/dryers are also ideal for very narrow places (below 20 feet). They allow the owner to use one side for equipment (washing and drying) and one side for folding, and still leave space between the two for customers to move. Stacked washer/dryers are also ideal for smaller spaces (under 500 square feet).
Kathryn Rowen, General Manager of North American Laundromats at Alliance Laundry Systems (including Huebsch and Speed Queen): Regarding products like our stacking washer/dryer/tumble dryer, most importantly, they can help owners Maximizing floor space and being in a single unit may not be an option. Locations that were previously unprofitable due to small square feet can now use stacking.
Sorensen: All configurations benefit from the increased capacity and space savings of stacking equipment, but those configurations in commercial strip malls or with a limited number of external walls benefit the most.
Imagine a strip mall with retail on both sides of the laundry room. The most practical installation of the dryer may be on the rear wall, closest to the combustion air source and exhaust terminal. The stacking device can provide more capacity for the limited linear back wall space. The flow from the entrance to the washing machine to the dryer to the folding can be configured to promote the clean and efficient movement of the entire space.
Conn: They can create piles of dryers, and they all occupy a wall. The owner of the laundromat can truly optimize the space and reduce the total footprint. In terms of specific configuration… you have a washing machine on one wall and a clothes dryer on the other wall, or more typically, there is a partition and a stack of washing machines in the middle, and a clothes dryer (stacking) device outside to support all These configurations, I will think the same.
The stacking products we see will have some interesting changes internationally, especially in the single-load stacking of our smaller platform, we see that people in Indonesia and other places can build an entire laundromat with just one stack. .
In part 2 of Tuesday: capacity and control options; market or promotional opportunities; the impact of the “bulk volume” trend
With some creative ideas, laundromat owners can use some inexpensive methods to improve their stores and attract new customers. Brad Steinberg, co-president of the laundry company PWS, looks at possibilities.
Post time: Nov-11-2020