Did you know that your clothes dryer is the single most expensive appliance that you own? It’s true. The cost of running your dryer is far more than most people ever consider. Even worse is that few people consider there is an alternative to running the dryer. Hanging a clothes line to line dry your clothes is a great way to save money on laundry.
Laundry is one of those costs that is unavoidable but painful. I mean, really, it’s never ending. The money we all spend on laundry is just ridiculous each year. If you have a family, finding ways to save money on laundry is the only way to curb that expense. Taking the time to line dry your clothes is just one way to do that.
Why You Should Hang a Clothesline to Line Dry Your Clothes
When you think about a clothesline, you probably think about what most people do; two big metal poles and an industrial clothesline in the backyard. While having that type of clothesline would be amazing for line drying your clothes, it isn’t needed. You can line dry your clothes with nothing more than a sturdy piece of clothesline and your back porch support beams, between two trees and so on. If you live in an apartment and don’t have a back yard, you can buy an indoor clothes drying rack that sits in your bathroom or spare room.
Reasons to Line dry your clothes to save money on laundry
As I said earlier, your dryer is the single most expensive appliance that you own. Line drying your clothes has been calculated to save around $1.08 per load. Now that doesn’t seem like much money, but do the math. At only 2 loads per week;
– Please introduce yourself if you have kids and only do 2 loads a week-
the math comes out to $2.16 per week saved, $8.64 per month and $112.32 per year saved just by line drying your clothes. For a family that does 5 loads per week, the savings would be around $280/year.
Next, you have to figure in the fact that you no longer need to pay for expensive fabric softeners, power used and wear and tear on your dryer.
The cost ends up being hundreds per year and depending on how much laundry you run your dryer; thousands.
Line drying your clothes makes you more aware of waste
Running your dryer uses wasteful electricity and fabric softener that you don’t need to use when you line dry your clothes. After you’ve line dried for a while, you become acutely aware of just how much waste your dryer is wasting when you run it.
This awareness often transfers to other areas of your life and budget which causes you to save even more money along the way.
Line drying your clothing can be a family affair
Another reason to line dry your clothes is that it offers a chance to spend time with your family. Hanging clothes on a line is great for small kids to learn hand eye coordination. It’s great for older kids too so they can learn to help. Those moments spent together are few and far between as your kids grow older.
Line drying your clothes is “free”
Where running your clothes dryer costs a crazy amount, hanging your clothes to dry on a clothes line is pretty well free. Once you get past the initial cost of the clothespins and clothesline or portable clothes drying rack, you’re golden on spending anymore money until your pins need replaced.
With a dryer, you spend money each and every time you run it making it quite clear that the only real way to save money on laundry is to line dry whenever possible.
Drying your clothes on a clothesline is better for your clothes
Drying clothes in a clothes dryer is actually really bad for them. Heat causes fibers to shrink or wear out quicker, and the constant tossing of a spinning dryer causes snags, rips and worse. Line drying on a clothesline, however, allows your clothes to dry without the issues that arise from the dryer. This means your clothes last longer and you spend less money replacing them.
Line drying your clothing avoids the risk of fire
Your clothes dryer are one of the leading causes of house fires in the US each year. Yes, you can verify that. Each year approx 2900 house fires are reported caused by dryers resulting in around thirty-five million dollars in damage.
Using a clothesline to dry your clothes eliminates that risk.
Cleaning your dryer lint trap with a wire dryer brush helps as well.
Line drying eliminates dryer background noise
I work from home (Six Dollar Family) and my laundry room is not too terribly far from my office. There is nothing more distracting than the sound of a dryer running while I’m trying to work.
And please don’t get me started on the things my children leave in their pockets.
My husband is worse.
Line drying with a clothesline though, eliminates any background noise. You aren’t running the dryer so there is nothing to make noise! Your sheets hanging on the line certainly aren’t going to drive you to distraction while they’re flapping in the wind.
Line drying your clothing can be fun
Taking wet clothes and hanging them on a clothesline is reminiscent of days gone past. It’s an “old fashioned” skill that most people never give a chance. There is something rather satisfying about seeing laundry you just got done hanging blowing in the breeze. Hanging your clothes to dry outside is a fun, family activity that once you try, you won’t want to go back to the electric dryer.
*Originally published August, 2016. Updated June 2019