My favourite homemaking chore is laundry and line drying is the main reason why.
Laundry is my favourite chore. I loved it, even more, when we had our own washing machine. Where we live now, we aren’t allowed to have a laundry machine. Instead, we have to use communal machines. If we disregard the problem of getting a timeslot to do our laundry, it’s still my favourite chore.
Line drying laundry may seem like an old fashioned skill. It is, however, a valuable skill when done correctly and there are many good reasons to learn and practise it in your day to day life.
Reasons to Line Dry Your Laundry
1 – Line Drying Laundry Lowers Your Electricity Bill
We have to pay about $1-2 to dry a load of laundry in a clothes dryer (depending on how long it needs to dry). Add that to the roughly $2 is costs us to do each load and it adds up. We do 2-3 loads of laundry per week. Let’s make the average 2,5 loads per week. That’s $5 to wash our clothes. Now let’s say we need to run two loads through the tumble dryer for two cycles and the half load for one cycle, that’s another $5 every week. This makes our weekly laundry cost around $10.
Repeat that for 52 weeks and our yearly laundry costs come to $520 – that’s a lot of money for us. It’s important to note here that using the communal machine is about 1/4th of the cost of going to a laundromat here.
Now, as we line dry all our laundry, we are effectively cutting that cost in half at $260. This is still a lot of money but way more frugal than with the dryer and the best we can do for the time being.
You may not be able to measure your savings as precisely in dollar figures as we can. If you have your own machines, you will have to look at how much electricity each load uses and figure in wear and tear on the machine. No matter what, not owning and using a dryer will always be cheaper than using one.
2 – Line Drying Saves you Money on Your Clothing
The second way line drying saves you money is in wear and tear on your laundry. Do you know that lint you clean out of the machine after every load? That used to be your clothes! Tumble dried clothes may be softer than air dried clothes and the drying time is shorter but these conveniences come at a high price.
While it’s really difficult to put a dollar figure to the wear and tear a dryer causes on your clothes, your clothing budget will thank you if you start line drying instead of using the machine. Our clothes last a really long time, sometimes so long I get tired of wearing what I wore as a teenager over a decade ago!
3 – Line Drying Laundry is Better for the Environment
While using less electricity and having your clothes last longer do wonderful things for your wallet, it’s also great for the environment.
Whether you believe in climate change or not, we can probably agree that it’s our job to be good stewards of the resources available to us. when you hang your laundry to dry, there is no need for fabric softener or dryer sheets, just let nature take care of the drying process for you.
4 – Your can Line Dry Clothes Inside and Outside
Growing up, my mum would line dry laundry in the garden during the summer months and dry the clothes indoors in our basement during winter. I know people who line dry clothing outdoors year round resulting in the occasionally frozen clothes on the line. They always thaw out at some point, you know.
We are lucky to have access to a year-round indoor communal drying room. It’s just a room in a basement with a bunch of clotheslines. Nothing fancy but it get’s the job done.
You can even just hang clothes on your shower rod. Just make sure to balance out the humidity with frequent airing out. If you heat with wood, then the laundry will add some much-needed moisture back into the air. And is it just me or are those wooden drying racks (affiliate link) just one of the most beautiful things to have next to your fireplace? I love the ones from Pennsylvania Woodworks (affiliate link).
5 – Line Drying is a Meditative Action
Pick up the item, shake it, hang it. Repeat. For me at least, hanging laundry on a line comes very close to meditating and it’s a great opportunity to be mindful.
You can save yourself a lot of work if you hang your laundry the right way and to do so you need to be present. I’ve often found myself entering a state of complete flow when I hang laundry. That’s probably why it’s my favourite chore.