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talk to me about line drying laundry

post #1 of 57
Thread Starter 
I'd like to stop using the electric dryer. Can you give me your best hints for both indoor/outdoor line drying?

I'm hoping to avoid crunchy towels if possible.

Thanks!
post #2 of 57
If you soften them up in the dryer first, they will come off of the line pretty soft. You can also shake and roll them around afterward. I don't do that b/c I am liking my crunchy towels. Vinegar in the rinse cycle can help remove any detergent / mineral residue that would increase crunchiness.

The slower things dry, the less crunchy they will be. Hanging towel in groups of 2 will delay drying. You can hand clothing inside to prevent fading from the sun and to slow drying.

Hang shirts upside down to shake out the wrinkles and to keep the shoulders from getting stretched out.
post #3 of 57
Great post:

http://simple-green-frugal-co-op.blo...y-indoors.html

(The entire co-op blog is awesome too!)
post #4 of 57
post #5 of 57
For a touch of luxury we planted a row of lavender plants under our clothesline. So beautiful and the sheets and towels smell heavenly!
post #6 of 57
We don't do 100% line dry, although in the summer it gets close to that. It's definately a change, so be flexible with yourself. Even if you can't dry all your laundry on a line, some is better than none.
post #7 of 57
We haven't used a dryer in over 2 years and we live in the Northeast where it is cold and snowy close to 6 months of the year~
For cold/wet weather I have a big drying rack that goes above a heating vent for smaller things like socks, washcloths, undies~
I have LOTS of good hangers for hanging things from the shower curtain bar in the bathroom.
I love when the nice weather kicks in though...I can do twice as much laundry twice as fast. Some things take FOREVER to dry indoors in the winter!! And the smell of sheets that have been dried outdoors in the sun is amazing!!
post #8 of 57
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by celtic_angel View Post
And the smell of sheets that have been dried outdoors in the sun is amazing!!
Oh, I know. My mom always did this and I can't think of many things I love more than crawling into that fresh bed. They could CHARGE MONEY for that smell and yet it's given away for free.
post #9 of 57
For outdoor drying in the winter I keep a close watch on The Weather Network. I know that the weather looks good for my area on Monday-Tuesday, two days, cold temperature, sunny with no precipatation. So I will be doing my laundry then.

Today I have to wash DS's diapers because I need clean covers for tonight so I will wash that and hang it inside today. On our few lines in the basement.

I cannot tell you how great it makes me feel to save money on electricity. Money that is better spent on good quality food for my family. Not to mention how much better for the environment it is.
post #10 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by henny penny View Post
For a touch of luxury we planted a row of lavender plants under our clothesline. So beautiful and the sheets and towels smell heavenly!
That is such a perfect idea!
post #11 of 57
I dry downstairs in inclement weather and like a pp said I watch the weather. It helps as well to shake the clothes out before drying.
post #12 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjawm View Post
We don't do 100% line dry, although in the summer it gets close to that. It's definately a change, so be flexible with yourself. Even if you can't dry all your laundry on a line, some is better than none.

I agree. We line dry as much as possible, but don't always get the chance, too. I would certainly try a 5 or 10 minute dry in your dryer and then the rest on the line. That should prevent the 'crunchiness' that you're referring to.
post #13 of 57
What about allergies? It sounds like a nightmare to have all those particles in my sheets and clothes as romantic as sun-dried sheets sound.
post #14 of 57
Some friends of ours found drying racks at the local thrift store for themselves, and then found some for us as well (we love them). So for the past 6 weeks, we've been line drying (or rack drying) indoors. And we have a 7 week old on cloth diapers, and we realized that the snappi works better when the diapers are air dried. You have to be on top of laundry management to make sure every load has time enough to dry before it's time to hang another one, but it's possible. So if you're on a budget, check out your local thrift store. New drying racks can be like $80.
post #15 of 57
Summer sun fades colored clothing so I plan on hanging those items out at night and bringing them in in the morning when they are dry.
post #16 of 57
Drats, my kids jus accidently tore down my drying line.

My advice would be to shake out your clothing BEFORE and AFTER drying.
You want to make sure that if any bees or bug have landed on your clothing, tht they are gone by the time you get inside. I just carry a basket outside, and take the item down, shake it, then fold it and put in basket.

Alot of our clothing doesn't have to be ironed because off line drying.

I also watch the weather for a couple of nice rain free days. I especially like it when there's a 5 mph wind blowing, cuz the clothes dry in under 45 mins. Thats about how long it takes clothes to dry in the dryer.

We don't have a dryer (or washer) so we have this down to a science.
In the winter time, we dry alot inside on hangers, and on every imaginable surface. It gets interesting after laundry day, but I really like it.
post #17 of 57

I always wondered if that was my problem

Quote:
Originally Posted by FernG View Post
The slower things dry, the less crunchy they will be.
I live in FL and my clothes and towels ans sheets dry very fast! They are always extremely stiff and scratchy! I couldn't line dry my prefolds! They were so rough you could use them as a loofah for your heels! They were so stiff they could stand up on their own!

I line dry to the point my clothing is slightly damp and then I machine dry them. It's extra work but it saves a TON of money on my electric bill since the dryer and a/c use up the most electricity in my house.

I also live in an area where there are no restrictions on clothes lines. I also live on 1/2 acre and have lots of trees so my laundry isn't visible!
post #18 of 57
Hanging clothes at night often doesn't work, as the dew is too heavy. I just hang our clothes inside out on the line, and that works fine to keep the clothes from fading from the sunlight. The clothes will be more crunchy if the day is quite still, with wind they'll be softer.

I dry almost all our clothes on racks in the house. I got my racks for less than $10 at Canadian Tire on sales. With 2 racks I can keep up with the entire laundry, including cloth diapers. I don't have just one laundry day, I do it daily or every other day.
post #19 of 57
crunchies - just give it a good shake when you are done drying it.

shirts and pants - hang upside down. this puts the pins are the thinnest parts and keeps you from having pointy shoulders.
post #20 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by zech13_9_goforgold View Post
What about allergies? It sounds like a nightmare to have all those particles in my sheets and clothes as romantic as sun-dried sheets sound.
I have allergies, so I try to be strategic with my line-drying. Oak is my big nemesis, so when the oak is high (like now,) sheets have to go in the dryer. My rule of thumb is: if my eyes are puffy and my throat is scratchy, anything that's worn close to my face gets dried indoors. But line-dried pants/underwear/socks/dishcloths are never a problem, so weather permitting, those get line-dried all the time.

I have two drying racks for inside drying anything that can't go outside due to allergy or pollen.

henny penny, I LOVE your idea of planting lavender under the clothesline. Brilliant! For some reason, that doesn't work with basil. I have dozens of pots of basil hanging around/under my clothesline, but I've never noticed the smell transferring.
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