Whether you’re on grid or off, clothes will need to be washed. Here are your options for an off grid washing machine.
Clothes washing used to be such hard work. Hand washing takes up a long time, especially with a lot of clothes in the hamper.
Washing clothes manually also takes up a lot of water.
When washing machines came into the picture, suddenly the task became a bit easier.
But, the fact didn’t change that it still uses up much water and electricity.
Those living in an off grid area can use washing machines, too. For people used to using modern washing machines, the switch could be hard.
They could go to the laundry mat every now and then, but in the long run, the trips could be pretty exhausting.
So, owning your own machine at home could be the best idea. Living off-grid means that the water supply could be limited and the power consumption of an electric washing machine could be higher than expected.
There are different off grid washing machines that you can choose from.
Off Grid Washing Machines
One of the off grid laundry options is the bucket washer. This is a great option when you’re washing small loads.
Unlike new washing machines, a bucket washer is quite simple and requires minimal effort.
You can even wash your laundry even when there is a power outage when using this method.
You can even DIY this kind of washing machine.
All you will need will be a 5-gallon bucket, a mason jar, laundry detergent, and a clothesline.
If you have no mason jars around, you can use the plunge method. Replace the mason jar with a plunger, and hold it by the plunge handle.
With your dirty clothes placed in the bucket, fill up the bucket with clean water until the water level reaches the top of your clothes.
Start cleaning by agitating your clothes. Pour the dirty water away and replace it with rinse water.
Agitate again for a minute just to get the excess soapy water.
Once all the excess soap has been washed out, pour the rinse water and hand squeeze each piece of clothing to make sure that no excess water remains on the clothes, then hang.
A clothes wringer can also be used to efficiently squeeze out unwanted excess water. The dry time for most clothes is usually around a couple of hours.
This simple design is the easiest way to wash clothes, especially if you’re washing clothes that aren’t that dirty. It’s like washing clothes in an old-fashioned way!
The Lavario Portable Clothes Washer is a great product that is from this type of washing machine. It is convenient, it’s friendly, and it helps you save money!
Off Grid Washing Machine with Foot Pedal
Unlike the bucket washer, this kind of washer uses foot strength.
This off grid washer spins the clothes and wash water inside it when pressure is placed on its foot pedal.
Small kinds of this washing machine can wash a load of laundry with at most 6 or 7 clothes.
It is an efficient washer for a single person, a couple living in a tiny house with a tight budget, or for those in an off grid situation.
It uses up less water and can work even with a power outage.
Its water use is only 10 liters every wash—5 for the wash cycle, and 5 for the rinse cycle.
Some versions of this kind of washing machine have a spin cycle which helps dry the clothes faster.
The Yiregi Drumi is a great portable washing machine of this type. Although it cannot wash a large load, you can still make many batches, so it’s still a great way to wash your clothes.
Off Grid Washing Machine with Hand Crank
While the previous suggestion uses the power of the foot, this manual clothes washer uses the hand’s power.
They both have a compact design, making both of them ideal for small apartments.
The machines that have either a hand crank or a foot pedal attached to them both work in the same way—they spin when pressure is placed on the crank or the pedal.
For a large family, using this kind of washing machine might take up much time, and you might have to make many batches.
For those living in a remote location, this type of washing machine might work well.
Avalon Bay EcoWash has a portable washer that has this kind of system. It has a unique design and is also convenient for tiny homes. Another one is the Wonder Wash. It is a great product and can help you out with your washing chores.
In the long run, squeezing your clean clothes before hanging can be a tiresome duty, especially when you’re washing a full load.
Load the washer with water and toss the garments in. Leave the agitation to the machine, and send the garments through the wringer into the rinse water on the other side of the machine.
Wring the clean clothes again to remove excess water before hanging them on the clothesline.
This kind of washer is best for off-grid use.
Old Fashioned Washing
There are many great things about going off the grid, and one of those is that you can always return to the basics.
To wash clothes, all you need is two wash basins and a wash board. Use the first basin to wash and soap clothes.
You can also use cold water for this method of washing.
Depending on the size of your basin, you can usually use one to two gallons of water for a single load of laundry.
This is a good choice if you are still starting up your tiny house and still adjusting to the costs.
This is great since it doesn’t use up much power and needs only a little water,
The manual washing machines mentioned above are all great types of washing machines. They do a great job in ensuring that the household has clean and dry clothes.
If you have a solar system at home, and your home runs on solar power, then here are some important things you might want to know about an electric clothes washer.
Check out our other off grid posts such as:
When choosing a washing machine, make sure that it has a connection between hot water and cold water.
It should have a wash program that allows you to add hot water into it, so it doesn’t have to warm water inside.
Be very careful when looking through the power consumption and water usage as the labels usually assume that you are using electricity.
Most washing machines nowadays need a sine wave inverter to function, so make sure you’re not using cheap generators to run yours.
The average power consumption of washing machines with Energy Star ratings is 500-watt hours.
Not only can you make greener footsteps, but you also get to save on water and electricity consumption!
If you want to know more, you can watch this Youtube video to learn more about what off-grid washing machine you can pick to replace your old washing machine.