Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Dryer-free Milestone

It's been six months since I stopped using our dryer. Well, I did use it one time when Peter's 103 fever threw off my laundry routine. But overall it's been a success, especially considering I do 2-3 loads of diaper laundry each week. (Used to be 3-4 when I started in September.)  So, thoughts so far:


 Pros


Save money! As a stay-at-home mom, I am always looking for ways to turn my time into money. I know running the dryer a few times each week is doesn't break the bank, but every little bit helps. Also, we don't need any dryer sheets. I like knowing that I am being responsible with our money.

Save the world! Come on, who doesn't want to save the world? Again, going dryer-free is a small step, but small changes can make a big difference. Not only am I reducing the energy we use, I'm also indefinitely postponing the day when our dryer will break beyond repair, causing us to buy another. Less junk in the landfills!

Laundry smells great! Well, sometimes. When the weather allows me to hang clothes outside, I love the smell of our laundry.

Stains don't set! Many times I accidentally set a stain permanently by throwing clothes in the dryer before checking them. Now I can just run them through the washing machine again, even if they've dried completely.

Peter can help! Usually he loves to help me take things off the drying rack. Recently he has been learning how to hang things correctly, practicing fine motor skills. Homeschooling already! :-)



Cons


Time-intensive. Hanging each piece of laundry, then taking it all down, requires significantly more time than tossing it in the dryer. I don't mind when I can hang it outside and enjoy the sunshine, but it's definitely a chore in the basement.

Some clothes don't fit. My jeans are looser than they used to be and two of my nursing tops are quite baggy. I didn't realize how much the dryer shrunk my clothes!

Requires planning. I don't know how important it would be to plan ahead for just clothes, but I really need to keep on top of diaper laundry. We can't do without clean diapers and they take longer to dry than regular clothes.

Laundry can smell odd. It never smells bad, but sometimes it just smells like recycled furnace air. Which makes sense, since it's drying in the basement by the furnace.


Do you hang any or all of your laundry? What pros and/or cons would you add?

8 comments:

  1. I LOVE hanging up laundry. Especially so in the warmer months. Here in our Oklahoma heat I can get more laundry washed and dried on a warm, windy day outside than I can using a dryer. I have been a little lax at it lately but as soon as the rain stops here I will be back at hanging up the laundry outside.

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    1. My aunt lives in Texas and has said the same thing - dry heat and a windy day are much faster than a dryer!

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  2. I wish I had a place in my basement to hang clothes (*if* I could find the time to clear out the storage room a bit I could have one inside but I am still not sure I have enough room to hang laundry inside for six people and keep up with the laundry.

    Upside, it has been in the 70's here (MN) so we can hang laundry outside about two months earlier than normal.

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    1. Yeah, this weather has been crazy! I keep waiting for blustery spring weather to return, but no sign of it so far. I'd enjoy it more if I knew it wasn't wreaking havoc on some of the crops. :-/

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  3. Been doing this a long time. No downside, except for that planning bit. Good thing in the winter, line drying indoors returns much needed moisture to the air!

    MaryEllen

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    1. True, I didn't think to list that as a pro!

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  4. We don't have a dryer (not unusual here), and I definitely agree about it being time-intensive to hang it all up. There have been too many times where my clothes have sat in the washer for hours because I am too lazy to hang it all up. We've had lovely weather recently, though, and I have been able to hang it all up outside. I just have to remember to bring it in before it gets dark!

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    1. I've definitely had to leave some laundry out for 2 days in a row when I left them out overnight... As long as it doesn't rain overnight it's not too bad!

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