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8 Tips for Drying Clothes on the Clothesline

  • June 19, 2011
  • 6:01 pm

Eliminate lint.
While line drying does lengthen the life of your clothes by not sucking bits of them into the lint trap, it doesn’t remove loose lint and pet hair (a big deal in our multi-pet household). You can toss any line dried but “furry” items into the dryer set on air fluff, with an all-natural dryer sheet, to loosen and remove offending fibers. I don’t have a dryer anymore (it gave up the ghost last year, and not replacing it was part of my 2008 carbon footprint reduction effort), but I do have a secret weapon: A damp hand rubbed firmly over the surface of hairy or linty items picks up the offending fibers better than any lint or pet hair remover I’ve ever tried.

Extend the drying season.
Drying laundry indoors can be an option, though in humid weather it will take a long time, boost indoor humidity levels, make your AC work harder, and perhaps exacerbate any mildew problems. In dry climates and in the heating season when indoor air tends to be too dry anyway, drying lines or wooden racks in the house are a great option. I have wash lines in my basement for winter use, and I use a box fan to move air gently through the drying laundry to speed up the process. In spring and fall, you can hang wash outside on cold days; try wearing rubber dishwashing gloves (or a larger size of rubber gloves over a thin pair of winter gloves) to keep your hands warm while handling the wet items.

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Rodale

Rodale.com is a new original source for daily news, information, and advice on personal and environmental health. Rodale.com focuses on “Where Health Meets Green” topics, providing daily news stories and breaking news along with easy-to-follow, high-impact tips and advice.

224 comments

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12:33PM PDT on Jun 22, 2015

Thank you.

4:45AM PDT on Oct 15, 2014

The DIY branche clothing clothesline: best way to arrange clothe on clothelines, simple cool. T Shirt Box

4:49AM PST on Feb 18, 2014

noted

4:21PM PDT on Mar 29, 2012

Thanks.

3:35PM PST on Jan 17, 2012

thnx for this

8:01AM PDT on Sep 28, 2011

When I was growing up, everyone hung their laundry outside to dry...and oh did the clothes smell so fresh. I really miss those days!

12:11PM PDT on Jul 21, 2011

I love it, but Seattle weather doesn't cooperate alot.

5:48PM PDT on Jul 20, 2011

I really need to get a line put up

12:51PM PDT on Jul 15, 2011

Thanks for the tips.

7:32AM PDT on Jul 11, 2011

Reading this made me smile because these tips are common knowledge to me, or so I thought! In my house, we always used the clothesline, and even now that my mother has a dryer, she only uses it when it's raining or in emergencies. Now that I live in an apartment I have to rely on dryers, and I miss clotheslines more than ever. Nothing like the clean smell and feeling of clothing that has dried under the sun.

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