Line Drying

This posts is for all of you considering line drying and weighing the pros and cons. My friend Tara recently finished Serve God, Save the Planet and was considering this next step.

I have been line drying since February and love it. Our electricity bills have been lower and we were able to keep the house cooler this summer, which is important because Matt works from home and his office is the hottest room in the house, it doesn’t help that he has tons of equipment in there, but it is all necessary.

Our HOA does not allow permanent clothes lines, so Matt set me up with some of those retractible ones. They work great for us and keep us in line with HOA rules.

It takes me about 10 minutes to hang up a large load of laundry and I only mind when it is above 105 out and I am sweating. Luckily I work from home and this isn’t too much of an inconvenience for me, I also do not have children yet so we do not have tons of laundry. I hear your laundry increases exponentially with the arrival of children. In the summer my laundry was drying in about 45 minutes, now it is taking about 2.5 hours. This makes it slightly less convenient, but I just have to remember to only do one or two loads a day and also remember that if I am doing more than one load I have to take the first load down before 2:30 p.m. I am bad about forgetting I am doing laundry and sometimes the second load does not get up in time to dry before sunset (thankfully I still have a dryer). I could squeeze in more than two loads a day, but taking into account that I am forgetful about laundry I don’t recommend it for me.

What about wrinkles or stiffness? I always fluff the laundry in the dryer for about 10 -15 minutes on a low heat. This step also helps remove animal hair, a step I find necessary with my four wonderful furry children.

Do you hang your undergarments for all the world to see? Nooooo! I have drying racks I set up inside for such things. Neither of us want those on display, especially with a two-story next store (we know they look in our backyard because they ask us questions about it). The racks fold up when not in use and have a flat top for drying items like sweaters (not used frequently in AZ).

I also have recently tried a new trick in my laundry experiments. I started using vinegar as a fabric softener. I was quite skeptical of this when I first heard about it, but I am very pleased with the results. Our clothes are just as soft as with regular fabric softener and don’t smell all flowery, and don’t worry they do not smell like vinegar at all. My washing machine has one of those handy fabric softener dispensers built in and I just fill it to the line. You can use a Downy ball also. I have heard people add it to the rinse cycle themselves, but who can remember to do that?

My laundry helper, by helper I mean the dog that has to be outside with me and trips me up constantly because I am looking at the clothes line and not him.