How to Size a Dryer

Margo Dill

If you are considering buying a new dryer, you will need to decide where you plan to place your new dryer. You also need to figure out approximately how much laundry you need to do each week. Small families or single people can generally purchase a smaller dryer even if they have a larger space to place it in, whereas large families most likely will need a large-capacity dryer. You also need to think about what type of washer you have or you are going to purchase.

Measuring and Choosing the Right Size Dryer

  1. Measure the height and width of the space where you want to place your dryer, using a tape measure with inches and feet. If you have a large laundry room, these measurements will not be as crucial as if you have a closet or other small space where your washer and dryer should fit.

  2. Measure the depth of the space that you have for your dryer, using inches. When you are looking at dryers, the depth listed on the product is the measurement from the front of the dryer to the back of the dryer---not the depth of the drum. You will need to take depth into consideration if you have a certain space the dryer should fit into and if you want to be able to close the closet doors.

  3. Multiply your measurements together to find cubic feet. (Remember 12 inches equals one foot.) Sizes of dryers are usually given in cubic feet. For example, Maytag has a dryer that is 7.0 cubic feet. The equation is: width x height x depth equals cubic feet. You want to look for a dryer that has fewer cubic feet than your space.

  4. Consider the washer you are purchasing and whether or not it will be a large-capacity washer. If so, you should purchase a dryer size that is also large-capacity and can keep up with the washer. An example would be that if you had a 3.5 cubic feet washer, then you would need a 7 cubic feet dryer to keep up with drying loads of laundry. Dryers should be larger for the same amount of clothing that fits in a washer because dryers need room for the clothes to tumble around.