I'm 28 and have no idea how to dry clothes.

(83 Posts)
Buddhagirl Sat 07-Dec-13 18:57:32

Iabu to use AIBU for advice.

But, how do you use a washing line? Dryer is too expensive so dh and I brought a outside washing line but I don't really get it. What if it rains when your out? What if it rains when your in and your left with a basket full of wet clothes? Will stuff dry in the cold air? Do you leave it over night? We have an inside drying rack but stuff takes like 2 days to dry on it.

I'm not a proper person sad

We've just brought our first house, last month I googled "how to mop a floor" +sigh+

DoItTooBabyJesus Sat 07-Dec-13 19:00:41

December ain't the best time for an outside line!

Loads of people will be along to tell you to get a Lakeland heated drier. Meh.

I hang a lot of my clothes up in the windows, a over radiators etc to dry mine. A mix of that, and aired and tumble dryer.

In the summer the washing line rock though!

pixwix Sat 07-Dec-13 19:01:08

Do you have radiators? if you have an inside drying rack, it might be worth investing in a dehumidifier - one that switches on when it senses humidity in the air - I bought one, and cos it only comes on when needed, my drying takes half the time... less electricity than a tumble drier

eurochick Sat 07-Dec-13 19:02:05

I only dry things outside in the summer months when I'm home at the weekends. Otherwise I use an indoor drying rack (and very occasionally the tumble dryer). Everything dries in 24 hours, but we do keep the house quite warm. Does your washing machine spin things off well? On a fast spin stuff comes out of ours almost dry.

Mrswellyboot Sat 07-Dec-13 19:03:15

I have an airer that I put in front of radiators but I use the tumble drier far too much

Halfrek Sat 07-Dec-13 19:03:56

I dry stuff on indoor airers which I put next to the radiator, I run a dehumidifier while they are drying otherwise my windows go mouldy.

ProfYaffle Sat 07-Dec-13 19:04:50

When you put clothes on the drying rack, make sure they're not scrunched up or piled on top of each other as that'll prevent it from drying. Make sure they're as flat as possible in a single layer. I put thicker fabrics (like denim and towels) on radiators and just use racks for lighter fabrics that dry quicker.

lastnightopenedmyeyes Sat 07-Dec-13 19:05:07

I use my airing cupboard to dry my clothes in the winter. It has lots of wooden slats in it on 2 levels, just right for hanging clothes on like a clothes horse. Clothes dry in around 8 hrs.

Before I worked this out I used a clothes horse on the landing of the stairs. Clothes tend to dry in about 24 hrs depending on weight.

hiddenhome Sat 07-Dec-13 19:05:38

Get a spin dryer. Costs much less to run than a tumble dryer and takes up much less room too.

cjel Sat 07-Dec-13 19:06:19

If its a dry day in winter then make sure you put the washing out early and get it in by about 3 o clock. It will then need 'airing' which is drying in doors but will dry much better than if it hadn't had the 'blow' outside. Never put it out if its raining, foggy. damp etc as it will only get wetter!!!

Cindy34 Sat 07-Dec-13 19:06:39

Spin well. Things will dry if there is a breeze. Do not keep out overnight, or in the rain.

PiratePanda Sat 07-Dec-13 19:08:44

Indoor airer next to the radiator; rack in the airing cupboard; stuff that needs doing quickly actually on the radiator.

You can only use an outdoor line in good weather(sunny and windy is best but not raining will do), and generally outside drying takes too long in winter. It's not rocket science - clothes need air and heat to dry.

mousmous Sat 07-Dec-13 19:09:17

have the lakeland airer. it's fab and you do not have to switch it on, if I have the time I leave it on there without it on.

generally for quick drying indoors
- find the draftiest spot in the house, preferably somewhere up (ours is on the landing, plenty of drafts and the warm rising air makes stuff dry quickly).
- hang stuff as far apart as possible to let air circulate
- use the highest spin setting of your washer to takeoutas much water as possible. also try if a second spin makes a difference.

BertieBowtiesAreCool Sat 07-Dec-13 19:12:45

I use airers indoors too. Sorry! Never find anything gets dry in the winter because the air is too damp.

You want a proper european style one though, like this or this because the kind which have several layers like X X X stacked up overlap too much, ditto with those tiny ones like a gate. You need to be able to fit clothes on so they don't overlap. I tend to find stuff dries in 1-3 days, depending on how warm the room is and how thick the fabrics are - pants dry quickly, jeans and hoodies take much longer, t-shirts and leggings somewhere in the middle (especially the collars and waistbands) The first airer I linked to holds 2-3 loads of washing, the second will hold about 1 and 3/4 of a second, which is fine if you do two loads a day apart because some will be dry from the first load (or you just put the extra things over doors, chairs, radiators, bannisters).

BertieBowtiesAreCool Sat 07-Dec-13 19:14:04

Ikea also do both of those styles.

Mumoftwoyoungkids Sat 07-Dec-13 19:16:15

I'm a bit obsessed with washing at the moment. Probably due to baby son (dc2) being quite a sicky baby so I have endless milky clothes to wash.

I set my washing machine on at bedtime to come on about 7 and finish about 8. As soon as it is done I hang it outside (having checked no rain due). Bring it in when it gets dark. Shove most in the tumble drier (but only for a few minutes) and hang the non drier clothes up. Always dry by the next morning.

Topseyt Sat 07-Dec-13 19:49:31

I put virtually nothing outside to dry in winter. Even on a sunny day, our back garden is in total shade at this time of year, so nothing dries.

I use and indoor airer/clothes horse, the radiators and when necessary the tumble dryer. I can't just leave 5 people's washing constantly hanging around wet.

ineedanexcuse Sat 07-Dec-13 20:04:39

Unless its actually raining I put stuff outside on the line to dry. My garden faces south so that there is sun all day (when its not cloudy that is). I don't bother if the clothes aren't dry by 3pm generally as long as it isnt forecast to rain overnight.I just leave the stuff out there until next day.

Usually this is enough to dry even heavy things like jeans or cotton tops/towels. A bonus is that towels left out will be softer since they have had a lot of nice fresh breeze blowing through them.

If it is raining or forecast to rain then the clothes will just have to be dried inside . I have some little airers that fit onto the radiators for small things to dry. Larger things (shirts ,jumpers) all go over a dining chair each in the dining room.This maximises the amount of clothes that can be dried and minimises the amount of time the room looks a mess.Also once dried I make sure the room is then well aired to allow damp air out of the house.

If clothes on the line get wet just leave them unless it is your precious silk blouse .Occasionally there may be a slight smell from the rain but I havent noticed this even though we live in a relatively industrialised area. It just isnt worth the faff to bring in rain wetted clothes to rewash and dry inside.

lljkk Sat 07-Dec-13 20:10:21

Wow, how did OP grow up in this country without learning to radiator dry?

Tops of our doors are pretty clean so I like to hang stuff up there to dry. DH gets shirty about radiators or door-drying (thinks we look like a laundromat) so insists on putting everything folded neatly & tightly on drying racks vaguely near the rads not even near high traffic areas with lots of air movement. Laundry is usually touch dry by end of the day and then he folds it up tightly and stacks it neatly in the airing cupboard where it festers and goes mouldy dries a bit more especially after I have spread it out & taken some back out to hang on doors & radiators.

Drying racks. Near rads. Heating on.

Summer; outdoors

formerbabe Sat 07-Dec-13 20:12:52

I have a heated airer for the winter. You just plug it in and it heats up...dries my clothes overnight and I don't have to stick things on radiators, which I hate.

foreverondiet Sat 07-Dec-13 20:14:25

Hang on the line on a sunny day by doesn't work well in the winter! We have drying thing up in garden march- October and take it down for winter.

lastnightopenedmyeyes Sat 07-Dec-13 20:15:43

I've heard a few people saying airing cupboards make their clothes go mouldy. Mine is so bone dry it never does that, sometimes makes things a bit too dry if anything so they need more ironing. I guess it must depend on the type of boiler/storage tank?

I put nice soap in the airing cupboard as well, to give everything a nice fresh smell grin

puntasticusername Sat 07-Dec-13 20:17:56

I'm 34 and I thought I knew laundry...how did I NEVER KNOW that heated clothes driers exist?

<glares at mn>

Why did you wait this long to tell me, guys? YABVU.

Mind...blown...might ask for the 3-tier Lakeland one for Christmas.

Goddammit, I can't do that, that would make me SO old.

formerbabe Sat 07-Dec-13 20:19:06

Heated airers are the best thing since sliced bread! Mine changed my life....seriously.

I line dry all year round, washing machine goes on first thing as soon as I get up, I normally load it the night before. Then it's out by 8am unless rain forecast, in at dusk and onto the airers. 98% of stuff is dry by morning with towels and jeans on radiators. You have to be quite organised but it can be done. This Friday gone I got three loads done and dried, all dry by Saturday morning. It was cold, but sunny and blowing a gale here so clothes were nearly dry by dusk and just needed a touch of finishing off.

Oh, have been doing this since tumble dryer blew up and we couldn't afford a new one. We can afford one now, but I'm happy to manage without one, and I have 3 young children (6,3 and 1).

I've been really surprised at how well our clothes have been drying on the line outside I think because its dry and windy. We put them out and also have a sheila maid inside. They lose most of moisture outside and just warm up and finish off inside. Sheila maid...or the cheaper kitchen maids are great

DeathMetalMum Sat 07-Dec-13 20:36:26

Our garden is total shade but can still dry a load during winter on a dry day. Agree with bringing in an hour before dark as it starts to get damp. I often put half on the line and half indoors - quick drying things indoors can dry in half a day. Or whole load out and bring in in a few goes so I can air in smaller amounts.

puntasticusername Sat 07-Dec-13 20:37:57

Is the 3-tier Lakeland one really worth spending 90-odd quid? Really really?

PrimalLass Sat 07-Dec-13 20:38:54

I have a tumble dryer. A full load dries in 45 minutes and costs about 25p.

PrimalLass Sat 07-Dec-13 20:40:26

Is the 3-tier Lakeland one really worth spending 90-odd quid? Really really?

Not in my opinion.

Yika Sat 07-Dec-13 20:42:42

Oh and laundry smells so lovely if it's line dried. That fresh air smell, unbeatable! Also, if you line dry in the sun it will keep your whites nice and bright as it has a bleaching effect.

Vintagecakeisstillnice Sat 07-Dec-13 20:44:16

I love my Lakeland dryer.

I'm baffled op. Did you have a maid until you moved in with dh?

mousmous Sat 07-Dec-13 20:50:41

nah, just a lot less laundry and a tumble dryer.

squeakytoy Sat 07-Dec-13 20:53:27

how on earth can you get to the age of 28 and not know how to mop a floor or dry clothes.. honestly??? how??

fatlazymummy Sat 07-Dec-13 20:54:03

I also find these useful, for drying/airing clotheshttp://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/424088592/Over_the_Door_Hook_single.html
I have quite a few, they fit on doors and wardrobe doors.

Morloth Sat 07-Dec-13 20:55:39

Get a tumble dryer for winter and an outdoor line for summer.

How have you been drying your clothes fir the prrvious 28 years?

fatlazymummy Sat 07-Dec-13 20:55:44
DipMeInChocolate Sat 07-Dec-13 20:56:41

I have a dehumidifier next to the airer. It makes a difference not having the clothes on the radiators. The house is warmer leading to the clothes drying better too.

squeakytoy Sat 07-Dec-13 20:57:50

I also find it beyond belief that two adults capable of buying a home together have no idea between them either!

specialsubject Sat 07-Dec-13 21:04:29

no-one born knowing this stuff!

wash according to weather forecast. Washing will dry throughout the year on windy days if it isn't raining. Consider some kind of canopy under which you can put a line, as long as the wind can get through.

if you have an airing cupboard use it to finish things off.
do not dry clothes on radiators, wrecks the house with damp and wastes energy.

and please remember that 'like' is not a preposition.

Buddhagirl Sat 07-Dec-13 21:08:35

Mummys tumble dryer :/

Oldraver Sat 07-Dec-13 21:25:48

Our tumble dryer broke last winter and we havn't repaired it yet. I do a combination of drying on radiators (underwear on each owners radiator) in the airing cupboard. I also iron some things as they come out the washer and hang them up in the airing cupboard

DrDre Sat 07-Dec-13 21:31:45

I stick it on a clothes horse next to a dehumidifier, it then dries really quickly.

SpikeyChristmasTree Sat 07-Dec-13 21:41:03

Lakeland heated airer is fab, I use that and a dehumidifier in winter. Can't stand having stuff on the radiators.

At my last house we had a bigger kitchen and had a rack than hung from the ceiling, it was brill, but my present kitchen isn't big enough.

mawbroon Sat 07-Dec-13 22:17:38

We have a pulley in the empty space at the top of the stairs. All the warm air travels up there and clothes can be washed in the evening and dry by morning - or at least during the winter when the storage heaters are on at night.

CerealKillerMom Sat 07-Dec-13 22:30:22


I second the spin dryer.

Takes most of the water out. Just get some laundry bags to stop woollies from stretching. Also will help stop mold from condensation forming in your house.

mumofboyo Sat 07-Dec-13 22:48:37

We bought a spin dryer last week and have used it for around 5 mins after each wash. Even thick things like jeans and hoodies dry on an unheated airer without the heating on in a day. It's fantastic.

mumofboyo Sat 07-Dec-13 22:52:42

We bought the one in CerealKillerMom's link. At 2800 RPM it's almost 3x faster than our washer and the clothes are noticeably dryer than when they're straight out of the washer. We've gone from only being able to do a load of washing every 2-3 days as we were waiting for the last lot to dry to being able to do a load daily and reach the bottom of the basket.

BertieBowtiesAreCool Sat 07-Dec-13 22:56:25

Oh come on, don't be an arse to OP, everyone has to learn this stuff some time. DP is constantly baffled by the household things I don't know confused I've lived away from home for longer than him as well.

IMO the heated airers are not necessary but you do absolutely need an airer which spreads the clothes out properly, one where they are draped over each other is pointless. If there are just the two of you and no DC then you don't need stuff to dry in 8 hours anyway.

Theres a book from the 80s which is called the Dairy Book of Household Management. Although many ideas are a bit outdated it's really helpful to have as it teaches you all sorts of stuff. You can probably get one on ebay or a second-hand book shop. I relied on mine a lot when I had my first place, and it just goes to show that lots of us don't know how to do stuff smile

Joysmum Sat 07-Dec-13 23:32:49

I bung everything I can on hangers and hang over the door frames or picture rails above the rads. Stuff that doesn't go on hangers goes straight on the rads. I'll even drape stuff over furniture to get as much air to it as poss. It's quicker to dry indoors in the warmth than outdoors in the cold in winter, even if it's not raining

clippityclop Sat 07-Dec-13 23:47:46

Further to what Prima said, you really need to re-consider the tumble dryer thing, save up and get a good condenser model. That they cost a lot to run is a bit of a myth these days. Have a look on the Good Housekeeping website for reviews. Being able to wash and dry clothes quickly means you save time, don't have to re-wash stuff that's been soaked in the rain, you need less bedlinen, towels etc, and having wet washing dangling about all over the house isn't healthy. Cuts down on the ironing too. I reckon mine's paid for itself over the years simply because I can tumble dry down duvets, and sleeping bags which I'd otherwise have to take to the launderette. Wouldn't be without one.

lovefifteen Sat 07-Dec-13 23:51:27

I am following this! I am just about to move back to the UK from a hot country and I don't know how I am going to dry my stuff.

BlackeyedSusan Sun 08-Dec-13 00:03:08

I use an airer to dry clothes. rotating the clothes from the middle to the outside and turning the clothes over helps to dry quicker. the airer is next to the radiator, which only goes on for a couple of hours a day, if at all. i also have an airing cupboad which finishes things off quite quickly.

Nojustalurker Sun 08-Dec-13 08:09:51

No sure if this. Had already been said so here it goes, if you are drying you must open the window in te room to prevent damp.

Nojustalurker Sun 08-Dec-13 08:10:55

And the Kim and Aggie how clean is your house book it good for learning the basics of house work.

PrimalLass Sun 08-Dec-13 08:12:31

save up and get a good condenser model

Mine was only about £200. The last one I had (Hotpoint) took forever to dry, but my new one is fantastic:


poppy77 Sun 08-Dec-13 08:18:55

I don't think anyone else has mentioned this solution:

1) ignore washing all week
2) spend a day shoving loads of washing into washing machine whenever you walk past
3) put all washing into big bags and place in car with children and dog
4) take washing to laundrette, place in one or two of their lovely big tumble dryers
5) about 6 pounds and one dog walk later, remove wonderfully soft and dry clean clothe and take home
6) sort all clothes out at the same time

Well worth 6 pounds imho, I don't have the space for a tumble dryer and I'm sure it would not cost much less to run/buy one anyway, and I barely have space in our tiny house/garden for drying clothes (plus I can now have the heating on noticeably less).

Janek Sun 08-Dec-13 08:26:31

Can i second what someone up there ^ said about 'balcony airers'. I've lived in germany and been on holiday to italy and everyone has one, presumably due to the prevalence of apartment living.

They are brilliant - no clothes overlap, you can use pegs so things hang a single layer thick, rather than overlapping themselves, like you would on a washing line, and you can put the airer outside without the washing blowing off (cos of the pegs), but get a full load in quickly (carry in the airer) if it starts to rain.

I also use mine with the arms folded in to finish off line-dried washing - we don't have an airing cupboard, but i fold and spread out the washing on top of the airer and leave it in front of the woodburner overnight and by morning it's dry as a bone. And already folded so i can just put it away.

I didn't know they were called balcony airers, now i do i may be able to replace the one i have from bettaware which is on its last legs.

comingintomyown Sun 08-Dec-13 08:32:38

BertieBowtiesarecool I think I love you ! I brought back an air drier that you linked from Italy years ago and was worrying only yesterday about how I would replace it little knowing all I need is a trip to Argos !

I would never have stuff draped over radiators ,horrible to look at and the cause of condensation problems

OP get the cheaper airer that Bertie linked they are brilliant

Janek Sun 08-Dec-13 08:41:41

Oh, they are sometimes called table-style airers too, vileda do one.

Janek Sun 08-Dec-13 08:47:33

comingintomyown be wary of one you buy in england, my one from bettaware is not as capacious as the one my in-laws have in italy, nor as sturdy. And i think mine is supposed to be 18m, that argos one is only 14m.

Some friends bought a lakeland one, which was apparently rubbish, so they returned it. And you can get them in ikea, but they look small and flimsy too. My one, which i thought was fine, now has a bent arm as i draped a towel over it and it gradually bent as the day went on. It's still usable, but now seems much more crap.

I am currently frantically googling and my preliminary investigations reveal this one from vileda (which might be foreign and therefore good!).

Janek Sun 08-Dec-13 08:52:48

this one has better reviews though, the main complaint seems to be 'takes up too much space' and 'falls over in the wind'. I prop mine up between two garden chairs. All airers blow away if you don't, don't they?

mousmous Sun 08-Dec-13 08:55:26

I have this leifheit wing airer
very sturdy.
agree with others, those
style clothes horses have the rungs to close together so air can not circulate very well.

feelingfuckingfestiveok Sun 08-Dec-13 08:55:55

Im going to fucking order a heted drier, they kepp popping up on threads all over and Im fed up. even if I didnt have a laundry problem i want one so I dont feel bloody left out (rant over as you were MN)

Janek Sun 08-Dec-13 09:01:47
Janek Sun 08-Dec-13 09:02:45

Spooky cross-post mous

comingintomyown Sun 08-Dec-13 09:04:16

Janek thank you for the advice that second one is a good discount . On a separate note why would someone buying an airer buy an upright dustpan and brush ? Those customers who bought bits on Amazon make me smile !

Mousmous washing obsessed as I am that drier is very expensive

Anyway I am just happy I don't seem to be alone in considering these matters to be of great importance !

BertieBowtiesAreCool Sun 08-Dec-13 09:59:31

That one looks OK Janek but the bottom supports are very close together so I would worry it may be unstable. We have a rickety one (Also living in Germany!) but the base is pretty wide and it doesn't fall over unless you put heavy stuff on one end and nothing on the other.

I had the upright one back in the UK and found it great as it doesn't take up much floor space, plus you can fold in one side and you can fold down individual layers to accommodate long things like trousers and towels.

Quoteunquote Sun 08-Dec-13 10:11:25

we use lots of these you can find decent strong ones, with proper hooks on top,

At this time of the year, we put the washing directly on them, put the washing on the line outside, then bring in quickly if it rains, still on the hangers, and we have stainless steel screw eyes fixed into the ceiling ( joists) all over the place, so just put them up on those and they dry over night.

be careful what you put in the tumble dryer, it tends to ruin a lot of clothes

Mia4 Sun 08-Dec-13 10:23:38

OP December/Jan/Feb are bad for drying outside. If you can get a heated airer then def look into it. Make sure you do a seperate full speed spin on any heavy items jeans, towels etc) after your wash has finished- wring out all that water.

When it gets warmer then peg your clothes up and out. In very warm weather i peg out before work, or leave over night. If it gets rained on, leave it to dry unless more rain is due. In which case spin the clothes and hang on the airer.

Janek Sun 08-Dec-13 10:26:20

I thought that too bertie, although the one we have is this one which looks similarly unstable, but isn't (unless you have stuff on one end and not the other). Although i have bent one of the wings - i can't imagine that happening to the amazing one my mil has. I'm tempted to get her to bring me one back from italy, although that seems ridiculous.

Janek Sun 08-Dec-13 10:33:21
BionicEmu Sun 08-Dec-13 11:20:12

I have a ceiling airer like this: www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B00BPPQPI0

(I paid a lot less than that though, think I got it on eBay)

I like it a lot more than most of the other ceiling airers because each rod is independently controlled, so you don't have to heft the entire thing up & down. And full of clothes, I really do mean heft, they weigh a tonne!

Where the hell are the usual Feminists telling her to get her DH to take it the Laundrette? and questioning whether he's a "proper person" because obviously he doesn't know either grin.

cjel Sun 08-Dec-13 11:40:34

Birds - too busy doing all the washing they tell us they don't dofgrin?

Mia4 Sun 08-Dec-13 11:54:03

Lol, i have to admit that I missed it was a 'we', I thought it was just OP! Youtube is good for many 'how do i do this' OP.

laughingeyes2013 Sun 08-Dec-13 12:10:23

I dry on a rack as spaced out as possible to allow air to circulate. I also straighten clothes with my hands as I go to help reduce ironing.

Whether you take the worse of the moisture out on an outside line in the winter depends on how much sun you get. Constant shade simply won't dry the same.

As for rain (all year round), you go by a combination of; the weather forecast, simple old fashioned looking at the sky, and pot-luck. It is Britain after all! I personally can't be bothered in the winter as it doesn't fully dry and it rains more.

If it rains in the summer I either grab the washing in quickly (if it won't be too wet) or leave it until the sun shines again - eventually it will dry.

All year round I'd take the washing in before the evening damp/dusk as the dried washing otherwise becomes damp again.

I use a tumble dryer but I've never had a heated dryer so can't comment, except to say that because it uses electricity you might not be too keen.

Hope that helps!

Dawndonnaagain Sun 08-Dec-13 15:05:51

An over the bath airer is good, bung on, shut bathroom door to keep heat in.
Having said that, I do have both a tumble and a Lakeland airer. I do really like the airer and it warms the conservatory, too.

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