Front Loader or Top Loader Washing Machine for a Caravan?

Front Loader or Top Loader Washing Machine for a Caravan?

Which washing machine should you get? A top loader or a front loader? A lot comes into play when making this decision such as space, layout, water consumption and capacity.


In our previous 3 large caravans (all 22.6) we’ve had top loading washing machines and they worked really well for us. At first I was hesitant to change to a front loader, but I’m so glad I did! The top loader did a great job, but it used a lot of water and took up too much space for our liking. We had ours located in the ensuite under the bench. Our washing basket used to sit on top of the bench and our rubbish bin sat on the floor in front of the cupboard door that was hardly ever opened as the washing machine was behind it.

With our current van we went with the NCE wall mounted 3k washer/drier machine and absolutely love it. Because we chose to wall mount, we gained enough space in our ensuite to add a slide out rubbish bin, a large cupboard that holds our dirty clothes basket and a lot of other things plus a smaller drawer. We have nothing on the floor anymore as the rubbish bin is hidden and we gained bench space that we can use for our air fryer and thermomix etc. Sure, we had the same bench space with the top loader but every time we wanted to use the machine, what was on the bench would have to come off.


We found the top loader would use 50+ litres for a medium wash and 70+ for a full wash. You could do a wash and then stop it before it drained the water and add more clothing, and you could also fill the machine with water from a river or lake etc outside, but generally speaking, it used a lot of water. We could wash all the bedding in 2 loads in the top loader but as yet haven’t tried it in the front loader. I think we could do it over 3-4 loads but we prefer to use laundromats for the big stuff where possible.

The NCE uses less than 9 litres on a quick wash, which is the only cycle we use when off grid. I always do an extra spin cycle as it doesn’t do it very well on the quick wash. I can’t remember how much it uses for a full wash, but it’s not much! We can do 3 (quick) loads of washing and use less than 30 litres of water. To do a similar wash in the top loader we would use almost double the water.


People often ask how noisy the wall mounted machine is which is a fair question! It spins quite fast, the van definitely moves and it is a little loud, but it only last for about 2 minutes on the spin cycle and is not an issue at all. If it gets out of balance, it can be quite loud but the machine re-balances itself which is pretty handy! The top loader also used to be very loud and jump around a lot on the spin cycle if there were heavy items like towels or jeans and the machine was imbalanced.


As a drier, the NCE is very handy, but doesn’t work like a traditional drier. It’s more of a ‘finisher’ and has a 1kg capacity.  As a test, we tried drying a hoodie straight after being washed and it took 10 hours which was fine as we were plugged into power. Generally, we use it more to finish things off if they don’t quite dry completely, or for small items. It was a Godsend when we were at the Gold Coast Holiday Park for a few weeks visiting family and it rained every day! We would hang the clothes on the Slide n Dry Pegless clothesline under the awning to partly dry and then finish them off in the drier for the remainder of the day or at night. As we were plugged into power, it was simple. Would I suggest a washer drier to everyone? No. I don’t think it is necessary, but it has definitely come in handy for us on a few occasions.


As I mentioned before, this didn’t start out as a comprehensive comparison, it was originally going to be a comparison of water consumption. Because of this I have no idea how much the top loading machines draw. In our last van we had 720w of solar and 400ah in lithium and power was never an issue – and that’s all the current power info I have on the top loader. But I can throw a few stats at you about our front loader from the load that I’ve completed right now. We have to keep in mind that the solar was pumping in and we have 600ah of Enerdrive lithium BTec batteries.  On a quick wash while the water is being pumped in, it draws between 14 and 22 amps. During the washing part of the cycle it draws about 7. This is looking at the common loads so anything else that is drawing power is included (nothing else large was running). At the end of the cycle not even 1% of our battery was depleted. From our very rough calculations we figured out that it uses about 10 amps per hour on average.

After reading this post and watching the video, I hope you have a bit more of an idea on what washing machine will best suit your caravanning experience. No matter what you choose, I’m sure just getting away in the caravan will be enough to make you smile!

Mutonia Sculpture Park, Oodnadatta Track, SA

Mutonia Sculpture Park, Oodnadatta Track, SA

Is this the most bizarre park in Australia? We think so. It was so strange, we couldn’t figure it out!

Talk about a random way to end our epic adventures along the Oodnadatta Track. ‘Rust in Peace’ … retired mechanic now artist Robin Cooke has quite the sense of humour! He started the park back in 1997 and has been ‘wowing’ (and confusing) travelers ever since. I did read that he returns with a new sculpture every year! I’m not sure how current that info was though. Quite a few of the sculptures here now look like they need a little tender loving … repairing! All of the sculptures are made from recycled rubbish, and there are no information signs, so it’s up to the individual to guess sculpture names and figure out what they might mean. 

This is the brilliantly weird Mutonia Sculpture Park in Alberrie Creek, 30 km west from Marree along the Oodnadatta track in South Australia. It used to be a railway siding on the Old Ghan line. But no trains live here any more. Nope – this is all about planes. And a bus, a car, a windmill, a dragonfly … ok. It has lots of stuff – just no trains that we could see. 

We parked up and headed off exploring the creative randomness that was all over the place. And while we were there, numerous others pulled up, had a quick look at few pieces of art near the gate then left! What? Nooooo! Just keep walking – at least until you get to the Love Bus (named by Chris♥️). It has ‘GHAN’ HOVER BUS SERVICE painted on the side and a (real) rabbits head, amongst other things, inside. 

Stone Henge, the Time Tree (that follows the cycle of the moon), a Windmill Flower, a lady bug, and plenty of other artistic bizarreness is waiting for you when you head off on your own Oodnadatta adventure! 

Have you stopped by the Mutonia Sculpture Park? If so, what did you think? Leave us a comment below!

Titanium Caravans Owners Rally March 2022

Titanium Caravans Owners Rally March 2022

When: March 25-27, 2022
Where: Mt Buffalo Caravan Park, Porepunkah, VIC
Who: Current & future Titanium Caravan owners, plus those who are genuinely interested in potentially owning one. There are cabins available for those who won’t have their own caravan.

We are so excited to be announcing this! Last years rally on the Great Ocean Road was epic, and we know this will be just as good.
This is a stunning caravan park in a beautiful part of Victoria AND there will be free pizza on Saturday night! What’s not to love? 😁

Don’t wait, email or phone to book now! Of course, mention that you’re part of the Titanium crew 😉

📞 03 5756 2235
Address: Harrison’s Lane, Porepunkah VIC


11 Fathers Day Gifts He Will Love

11 Fathers Day Gifts He Will Love

Give dad a gift you know he will love this Father’s Day! From camp chairs to jump starters, from MaxTrax to fire pits. It’s all here.


 Every outdoor enthusiast needs a set of MaxTrax, but only the cool kids run the limited edition Turquoise Mk II. Get onto it before they’re all gone!


Read more here


So good that I even got my dad one! We love our Campgrill and use it whenever we can. It’s Chris’s favourite way to cook, looks great, keeps us warm, is light weight and packs down really small. Head over to the Camp Grill website and use our code ADUCREW for a discount off your purchase.



knobby underwear subscription

Chris gave me a subscription for mother’s day about 4 years ago. BEST GIFT EVER! Seriously. We’ve  both worn and loved Knobby’s for over 4 years so you can imagine how many sets we have between us now! Not only do you get a funky new design delivered to your door every month, you get the comfiest underwear around. Designed on the sunny coast and worn world-wide. Join the Knobby Nation now! I mean, buy a subscription for your dad. Haha. Use our exclusive code ADUCREW to get a discount off your first subscription.  Click here to read more.


hema hx-2 navigator

We would have been lost many, many times without our Hema! It is our 100% must-have for touring and means that when we lose internet and phone service, we can still see exactly were we are, where we are going and all the fun stuff nearby.  Featuring Australia’s best topographic mapping, turn-by-turn navigation and over 40,000 campsites, caravan parks and other touring points of interest in a 7-inch multi-touch screen, it is a MUST HAVE!

Head over to the Caravan RV Camping website and use our codes for a discount off your purchase. Codes are valid for any item on the CRVC website!

  • Use code ADUCREW40 in the shopping cart to get $40 off any product over $1,000

  • Use code ADUCREW50 in the shopping cart to get $50 off any product over $1,700

  • Use code ADUCREW75 in the shopping cart to get $75 off any product over $5,000


best camp chairs ever

We kid you not. We have tried many over ther years and none come close to our Firenze chairs from Dometic. We have both styles, the Lounge Firenze and the Serene Firenze Relaxer (aka the anti-social chair). Use our code ADUCREW for a discount off your purchase on these and heaps of other Dometic products! Read more here.


bbq arm


Designed for camping and 4WD enthusiasts, this is the must-have caravan, camping and 4WD accessory. We used this all the time before our slide-out kitchens came along.

We had a mount near the tow bar of our 4WD and one on the side of the van – it’s a really handy little gadget! No need to lug the bulky BBQ trolley around anymore.

Head over to the BBQARM website and use our code ADUCREW for a discount off your purchase.



portable fridge

Choose the fridge you think the dad in your life will love, enter the discount code and then sit back and relax, knowing you’ve just given him the best gift out of everyone!

Head over to the Caravan RV Camping website and use our codes for a discount off your purchase. Codes are valid for any item on the CRVC website!

  • Use code ADUCREW40 in the shopping cart to get $40 off any product over $1,000

  • Use code ADUCREW50 in the shopping cart to get $50 off any product over $1,700

  • Use code ADUCREW75 in the shopping cart to get $75 off any product over $5,000


tidy turf mats

These Aussie hand-made mats are THE BEST for getting rid of excess debris that’s stuck to your feet or your shoes … think sand, wet grass, mud and whatever else you, your mates , your dog or your kids might of stepped in! Use our exclusive code ADU10 to get a discount! Click here to read more.


portable jump starter

We haven’t needed to use it yet, but we have rescued someone at the Devils Marbles who did! Avoid being stuck with a dead vehicle battery thanks to the Dometic PJS118 portable jump starter. Powered by lithium polymer technology it’s perfect for starting a flat 4WD battery. Cables, laptop connectors, alligator clips and a compact carry case are included for ultimate convenience and portability. Use our exclusive code ADUCREW to get a discount on this and heaps of other Dometic Products! Click here to read more.


lskd gear


You can’t go wrong with LSKD as a gift for anyone! We have been wearing this brand since the very beginning and love it! Use our code CREWADU to get a discount off all non-sale items! Click here to read more.


insulated drinkware


We use them everyday and we love them! They keep our coffee hot and our kombucha cold all day! All styles come in three colours: the stone-inspired Ore, earthy Moss and the energetic Mango! Use our exclusive code ADUCREW to get a discount on this and heaps of other Dometic Products! Click here to read more.



Crocodile Harry – Coober Pedy’s Hugh Hefner!

Crocodile Harry – Coober Pedy’s Hugh Hefner!

WARNING! This is not the kind of attraction to drag the kids along too. Don’t get me wrong – they would probably love it, but, you would definitely have a whole lot of questionable questions being fired at you!

Coober Pedy’s legendary Crocodile Harry died in 2006 at age 81, but he sure has left a legacy behind. In a town as quirky as Coober Pedy where underground living and random stuff (junk) lying around is normal, it takes a site as insane as Crocodile Harry’s Underground Nest & Dugout to really stand out. 

When we arrived, it felt like we had pulled into the driveway of a home on some far away planet. We parked beside a rusty old combi with flat tyres that was covered in graffiti – Harry’s Hideout and For Harry from WA. Painted on the back of the van was a woman in a bikini lounging against a palm tree and on the side, a topless woman being embraced by a sunglasses wearing crocodile. Welcome to the Crocodile’s Nest!

As we walked into the front yard, we became surrounded by the bizarre … mounds of dirt with rusty bicycles, pots and pans, old bones made into ‘art’, old cars dug into the ground, cacti and, well, we didn’t know where to start!

Harry was a much-loved larrikin during his 31 years here in Coober Pedy and spinning a good yarn was something he loved to do. According to Harry, he was christened a baron in Latvia, fought in WWII where he was badly injured, and was even captured by the Americans at one point! He also claims that after the war he defected and fled to Australia in 1951 and that is when he started hunting crocodiles. Harry also claims to be the inspiration for Crocodile Dundee!

Just ask the locals who remember what life around here was like while Harry was partying with backpackers at his place. I have been told that this was a very popular hangout for the younger visitors to the area, and that the town just hasn’t been the same since his passing all those years ago.

The Crocodile’s Nest is six kilometres out of town and must be one of the weirdest places I’ve ever seen. It is filled with crude artwork, painting, graffiti, random objects, car parts, old school porn (VHS!), women’s underwear, photo albums, Harry’s personal belongings and tributes from thousands of people who visited during and after Harry’s life. Some of these random objects have been placed by visitors, but most were put there by Harry (Arvid) himself. The first thing you notice as you approach the front door is a hideous looking mermaid with a skull and large breasts. As you walk in, things just get crazier.

The place has been left as it was when Harry was there. Slide the drawers open and you’ll see Harry’s clothes. Have a look in the bathroom and his razor is still sitting there with bottle of soap. On his desk are cards, a typewriter, and framed photo of someone – maybe his dad?

Harry’s Dugout is so strangely unique it was used in a scene from the Mad Max movie, Beyond Thunderdome. This is what shot him to local legend status and the notorious womanizer began charging admission to visit his home.

Crocodile Harry has been recognized worldwide thanks to news articles, a documentary filmed in 1955 called Krokodiky Harijis (Crocodile Harry in Latvian), and the 2 books he wrote recording his early expeditions, Latvian Crocodile Hunter in Australia (1957) and Long After The Sun (1958). Legend has it that Harry killed as many as 10,000 crocodiles (some say 40,000) to sell for cash over his two decades as a croc poacher before retiring as an opal hunter and living in his underground home (dugout) in Coober Pedy.

I feel like I need to add that as he got older, he settled down a little and got married. OK, maybe settled down is a bit of a stretch! Harry first met Marta by letter after a photo of him without a shirt appeared in a German magazine. Women began writing to him and Marta was one of them. Even though she was married, Marta left her husband and moved to Coober Pedy, to live with Harry. As the many sculptures indicate, Harry was clearly a ‘boob man’ and at least one of these sculptures is of Marta who also contributed to some of the art in the dugout.

The couple was interviewed by the Australian Woman’s Weekly back in 1981, and had their picture snapped beside the big crocodile sculpture that’s still in the dugout today.

Thankfully Harry’s dugout remains and has been turned into a museum for curious visitors like us. And he hasn’t been forgotten in his hometown of Latvia either. There is a 2-tonne statue of a saltwater crocodile in his honour that many tourists find a bit odd. The Visit Dundaga website says:
The concrete sculpture by O. Skarainis was constructed in 1995 and this is a memory sign devoted to the strong men of Dundaga and a reminder about the adventures of the former Dundaga resident Arvīds Blūmentāls who was a traveller and a crocodile hunter in Australia. He hunted about 10 000 crocodiles at his place of residence and has been the prototype for the famous movie by Paul Hogan «Crocodile Dandy».

My conclusion is that Crocodile Harry was the crocodile hunting Hugh Hefner of Coober Pedy! If you decide to pop in for a visit, see if you can find where Aussie Destinations Unknown has been scraped into the wall (hint … naked white lady with chain 😉).



Located six kilometres west of Coober Pedy on the Seventeen Mile Road


$7 contribution to an honesty box found on the kitchen bench, just inside the front door.


Open every day between 9 am-12 pm and 2 pm-6 pm.

Black Rocks, Esk, NSW

Black Rocks, Esk, NSW

Sand dunes, huge black rocks, perfect grassy campsites, and a spectacular coastline – this is Black Rocks, NSW – an incredible natural paradise.

We have thoroughly enjoyed the past four days camped up at the Black Rocks Campground in the Bundjalong National Park in Esk on the NSW North Coast. We have spent quite some time in this area over the past 10 years, but this was our first time camping at Black Rocks as our usual ‘go-to’ is Woody Head Campground, just around the corner. Day trips to Black Rocks are great, but not the same as setting up camp for a few days!

‘Set behind the dunes amongst tuckeroo and banksia trees, Black Rocks campground is perfectly positioned right by Ten Mile Beach and near Jerusalem Creek. Not far from Evans Head, it is a great place for a family camping holiday, with campsites for caravans, camper trailers and motorhomes.’

When I posted on our socials about our trip, the most common question was ‘how was the road in?’ We found the road to be smooth and in really good condition. Dusty in the dry, and of course the rocks are still there as they always have been. But all in all, great condition. We did hear that just a few weeks earlier it had been very corrugated, so clearly some work has been done to it since then – my guess is in preparation for the Easter holidays.

Black Rocks Campground is extremely popular, and spots are snatched up pretty quickly, especially during the holiday periods. We stayed the week before the Easter Holidays and were lucky enough to secure the very last site big enough to accommodate a caravan, which was site 28. This is a GREAT spot! It’s a large, flat, grassy site with a clothesline, fire pit and undercover table and chairs. It is also right across from the beach, toilets and public BBQ. We even had a host waiting for us upon arrival!

There are 50 sites available at the campground and most of the sites are similar, but of varying sizes. Some are suitable for caravans, some for camper trailers and others just tents. Some are ‘walk-in’ sites and others can easily fit your whole setup.

You will find picnic tables, barbecue facilities, carpark, clean drop toilets, fire pits and clotheslines dotted around the place, and there is even a dump point if you need it. You will need to bring your own drinking water and firewood.

The beach itself is incredible and you could easily spend hours exploring the huge black rocks dotted all along the coastline. The weather in the previous few weeks had been a tad crazy which meant that the ocean and beach was covered in foam and quite vicious looking! It was also extremely windy for most of this stay.

Jerusalem Creek is well known for those who like to take the kayaks out for a paddle, and the Jeruslam Creek Walk is a 10.3km, three to four hour walk through the wetlands for people who prefer to explore with their feet on the ground.  

Black Rocks Campground is part of the Bundjalong National Park, which means that booking fees must be paid and permits are required. We paid $24 per night camping fee plus $8 per day for the car.

Click here to book