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inventive ways to dry washing

(61 Posts)
BooyhooRemembering Thu 01-Nov-12 17:14:18

i have a lot of washing to dry at the minute and have no tumble drier so i have had to be a bit imaginative with drying methods. i know everyone has different methods so i thought it would be a good idea to collect all the different ideas into one thread to make it easy for someone to find them all.

here's my list of suggestions (i know these wont be practical/possible for everyone)

-obvious one is the washing line but of course is weather dependant
-if you have space ouside you could build a shelter- my mum is lucky enough to have a barn that is no longer used and she has two big lines in there.
-indoor laundry pulley(if possible have it fitted over a heat source)
-radiators and radiator airers
-clothes horse
-hotpress slats
-dehumidifier in a small room/cupboard with clothes on airer
-hang clothes on hangers on curtain rails/doorways
-banister rail
-tumble drier (probably the most expensive method)
-heated drying rack

that's all i can think of right now. please add your own and maybe i can get a bit more washing done in less time grin

PigletJohn Thu 01-Nov-12 22:41:01

The spec for my new tumble drier says it would cost 60p to dry a full load of cotton. Most washes are less than that so doubtless use less electricity.

If you have a draughty garage with no tools or cars in it to go rusty from the damp, you can hang dry washing in there, or under cover in a car port or similar rain shelter.

The biggest problem with draping wet washing around the home or over radiators is that it causes condensation, damp and mould. My suggestion is to use a roll-away line over the bath, and leave the extractor fan running, with the door and window closed so the water vapour will not spread around your home but will be sucked outside. A typical bathroom extractor fan uses 20Watts so will run for 50 hours on 12p worth of electricity.

If your fan is noisy or ineffectivem get a new one.

BooyhooRemembering Thu 01-Nov-12 23:46:22

piglet is an extractor fan more effective than having a window open in the bathroom?

ChaosTrulyReigns Thu 01-Nov-12 23:49:37

I lay a lot of things over the back of kitchen/dining room charis.

Particularly duvet covers and tablecoths. Shake them out perfectly flat and then put all the chairs in a line - usually dry within 18/24 hours. - It even works for double folded king size covers - just refold every so often.

Perfectly flat - no need to iron.

mummmsy Thu 01-Nov-12 23:55:29

i have a 4 line washing line over the bath in my bathroom, hang washing up there before bed, heating is usually on for half an hour in the morning, leave bathroom windows open all day with a gale blowing through grin and heating on again in the evening for an hour. can take 2 full days of this though before they are thoroughly dry though. pretty much free as the heating is on anyway and you get that 'fresh air' smell from the windows being open.

total pain in the ass having the washing hanging there all the bloody time though - only a house with mum and small child too, so no good for bigger families

sweetkitty Thu 01-Nov-12 23:55:43

My MIL used to iron everything straight from the washing machine, so take out, iron then hang on clothes horse, dry the next morning and ironed. Bit extreme though.

PigletJohn Thu 01-Nov-12 23:58:30


a window is dependent on wind direction. It might blow the steam out of the house, or it might blow it in. It will also tend to make the bathroom cold, and depending on wind direction, might suck a lot of warm air out of the house. Fans remove a limited amount of moist air at steady rate, so I prefer them.

Burglars can't climb through extractor fans.

BooyhooRemembering Fri 02-Nov-12 00:06:58

all good points. i have no extractor fan but am in private rented so i will use these reasons to ask the LL if he will consider having one installed. thank you.

ImperialFireworksInMyKnickers Fri 02-Nov-12 00:12:28

I admit to using the tumble for most of it now the weather's gone shite. But official school jerseys (non-negotiable, logo-ed, school is sole supplier, ripoff expensive bastards) are un-tumble-dryable, so they hang off the hooks that live permanently in the main beam across the sitting room, which I originally put in to carry Christmas decorations.

CelticPromise Fri 02-Nov-12 00:15:19

I hang out first thing on any dry day, even cold and damp, especially bedding and nappies. They don't come in dry, but much drier than if it'd hung them indoors first off. I will check weather and put a load on delay to hang out when I get up if it looks ok.

Apart from that I just hang out in the living room where there is a fire, desperate stuff its hung on the fire guard. We have a dehumidifier that helps, and I hang socks and other awkward things on the hall radiator which is a heat leak.

BooyhooRemembering Fri 02-Nov-12 00:25:58

while i'm on the subject of drying washing. can anyone recommend a good rotary washing line that isn't £££?
i bought this one in july and the arms have moved position so that i have 2 very short sides to hang on and 2 very long sides to hang on but the tiers of line are too close together to get any space between the washing, it also means the lines sag very low and anything i hang almost touches the ground. not good with dcs in the garden and the wind doesn't get to them. i've tried tightening up the lines but they just sag again and the arms keep going back to the odd position. no good at all and i really could do with still having a line outside so any recommendations would be appreciated.

PigletJohn Fri 02-Nov-12 00:49:15

It sounds like the lines are slipping through the arms, I wonder if it would be possible to spread the arms to the correct spacing, then lash and knot nylon cord to the end of each spar, to hold them at the correct spacing?

PigletJohn Fri 02-Nov-12 00:51:31


does anyone know if you can get a Martini Beach Umbrella or similar cover to go on a rotary dryer, to make it decorative and useful to sit under?

monsterchild Fri 02-Nov-12 00:52:29

If I have to dry something in a bit of a hurry I roll it in a dry towel and press it down. the towel takes out a lot of the water. Then I just hang them in the bathroom.

SinisterSal Fri 02-Nov-12 00:58:03

I've for a hook over radiator type thing, so handy, goes over the hall radiator or uptairs ba

BooyhooRemembering Fri 02-Nov-12 01:01:37

that's worth a try. is nylon cord the same stuff that cheap washing line is made of? the sort you can buy in poundstretcher?

UltraBOF Fri 02-Nov-12 01:18:41

Have you looked into traditional maidens? They hold at least a full wash, and clothes dry overnight if it's over a radiator. I think the place I got mine was a site called pulleymaid.

BooyhooRemembering Fri 02-Nov-12 01:25:26

i have considered that but i actually have a really good set up in my hotpress. i have a big airer that fits in there and the dehumidifier, i can fit 2 loads on the airer, plus a bit more on the slats of hotpress. my hot water goes on twice a day and generates quite a lot of heat in the hot press, added to the dehumidifier, i can usually have the two loads dried in 24 hours. this is great for winter but i still want to be able to make the most of any dry weather we do have, i love that line dried smell. might just have to give up on that now for the winter and try again in the spring with the outdoor rotary line. i'll try pigletjohns tip tomorrow and see how i get on.

BooyhooRemembering Fri 02-Nov-12 01:26:46

i also dont put the heating on as it gets far too hot in here (mid terrace, elderly neighbours who must have theirs on high!)

SinisterSal Fri 02-Nov-12 01:40:51

You must not have a lagging jacket, there's feck all heat in myhot press. I will put kids clothes in there if there an inch sway from properly dry, but its only to air not dry really

BooyhooRemembering Fri 02-Nov-12 01:44:54

yep lagging jacket on it. i dont know why the heating and hot water is set so high, or even how to lower it. there's no thermostat in the house.

PigletJohn Fri 02-Nov-12 02:13:02

there's no thermostat in the house shock shock shock

tipping money down the drain....

I suppose you could turn the boiler thermostat down. It will give a more gentle heat from the rads. Is it a rental?

BooyhooRemembering Fri 02-Nov-12 02:17:35

yep. i have an inspection on tuesday so i'm going to ask then about having a thermostat and extractor fan fitted.

HolyAutumnGoldBatman Fri 02-Nov-12 02:22:47

Put the clothes on the kids wet and get them to run around outside until they are dry. Top tip.

MousyMouse Fri 02-Nov-12 19:27:54

bbc says that many homes have a humidity problem due to washing indoors

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