Saturday, September 6, 2014

Air Drying Laundry

I used to air dry most of my laundry, for both economic and environmental reasons, until daughter complained that her jeans and towels felt too rough and stiff.  Then, I switched to drying most of her clothes in the dryer, while air drying most of my things.  I did use the dryer for quilts and blankets, for convenience.   Sometimes, however, I'd get lazy and use the dryer for my clothes and other household items, as well as daughter's clothes; it was easier to toss a load of laundry into the dryer than to hang it up.

I used to have several clothes lines stretched out in the back garden, but, eventually, ants using the lines as elevated highways (and finding them on the clothes), birds using them as perches (and sometimes having to rewash the dried items as a result of bird droppings) and the lines themselves deteriorating due to the sun, led me to taking the lines down.    These days, I tend to dry the clothes inside the house, on drying racks and on clothes hangers hanging from the doorways (the majority of my doors have wooden door frames which provide convenient ledges for the hangers).

The last time I used the dryer, a week ago, I heard an unusual noise coming from it, but I put it down to a button or something from a piece of clothing being loose and being tossed around.  But when I took the clothes out, I noticed that they weren't quite as dry as normal.  The last time that happened (clothes not drying properly), was several years ago and due to a kink in the vent hose.  Perhaps it is time to pull the dryer out and take a look at the vent hose.  Or maybe the hose itself needs cleaning.

Or, it might be that the dryer needs servicing or even, replacing.  It is a gas dryer, which I bought new in 1992.  I read that the average life span of a dryer is 16 years.  Mine has provided me with good service for 22 years (perhaps because I don't use it to dry every single load of laundry).  

Now that daughter is away, I am determined to air dry even more of my laundry.  So far today, I've done 2 loads that are air drying and a 3rd load (sofa dust covers) will also be hung to dry.  I am not sure just how much gas and energy the dryer uses for each load, or how much it costs to run, but I like to think that, by air drying the laundry, I will not only save money, but also, be more environmentally responsible.

How many others air dry their laundry?  Do you line dry outside or dry it inside?  Do you do it for cost cutting or environmental reasons? 


  1. Due to dryness of air, I'll use dryer for 5 minutes with 1/2 a dryer sheet and then quickly to hangers to both add humidity and prevent the need to iron shirts/blouses.. With an electric dryer I see the difference on my electric bill at change of season as blankets/quilts are fluffed on 'air' setting at change of season.

    1. That's good that you have found a way to minimize the need for ironing. I've a gas dryer, but it uses electricity, as well, since it has to be plugged in to work. Thank you for commenting.

  2. Hi... Definitely dryer. But more for convenience sake since we stay in an apartment.

    1. Yes, much more convenient to use a dryer when one is in an apartment. Especially if you have to take the laundry to a laundromat or a laundry room in the apartment building. It's hard to be lugging baskets of wet clothes back to the apt. to dry. Thank you for commenting; I appreciate it.


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