passive solar clothes dryer

in terms of appliances, the dryer is second only to the refrigerator in energy consumption.  the average dryer uses over 100 dollars worth of energy a year, so it certainly makes sense to try to reduce its use as much as possible and find energy efficient substitutes.  and the passive solar clothes dryer aka a clothes line couldn’t be much simpler or cheaper.  for under ten bucks you can get a line and some clothespins and you are off and running.  clothslineanother low-cost method for reducing your utilities and saving money!  clearly you can’t use a clothes line all year in detroit, but for over half you can, which saves you at least 50 bucks.    you also get the added benefit of having an excuse  for walking out into the yard and enjoying some vitmin d, which is a lot more pleasant than going to the basement and moving clothes into the dryer.

what methods are you using to reduce your utility use that are also easy and low coast.

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7 responses to “passive solar clothes dryer

  1. I ♡ my clothesline! It brings me great pleasure to hang my clothes up when the weather allows here in WNY. I was very thankful when my fiancée put it up. Not only does it give me some time out-of-doors, but it gives me some quiet time away to pray and meditate. It is also an excellent way to hone your homemaking skills too! I just ♡ how the clothes smell fresh with sunshine. I make my own laundry soap, so hanging them out is just part of the traditional cycle too.
    Great post! Short, sweet, accurate, and quite informative ツ Thank you. I wish every woman would do this like we used to before we became dependent on modern conveniences and I think the world would start to become a better place ツ

  2. We do use our clothesline year round in Detroit. We bring it into the kitchen where there is always cooking and wood burning going on. The drying clothes actually make for the perfect humidifier, perhaps eliminating another energy using appliance.

    • good point – lacking a wood stove, we have drying racks in the basement – which in the winter take a long time to dry, but certainly reduces our dryer use. we have plans to put up a hoop house in the fall, and we were thinking of running a clothes line though it to take advantage of sunny days. hopefully one day we will have a wood stove.

  3. I just hung out our sheets to dry this morning! I wonder if it will bother Eric’s allergies but there’s really only one way to find out. It’s been a very rainy spring here but I’m hoping to do this more from here on out.

    We just moved from a glorified lean to (it had all four walls, but zero “amenities”) to a house with all the fixins. I’ve not lived in a house with central AC in over ten years, so I doubt we’ll be converted anytime soon. We just try to get acclimated as best we can and look like slobs around the house. On the weekends, we avoid the hottest part of the day by availing ourselves of DC’s excellent public swimming facilities. If it’s over 85 in the house when we go to bed, there’s an AC unit we can use. DC truly is a swamp sometimes, and we’re not saints!

  4. We live in a 3-storey townhouse near Portland, Oregon. the weather here limits the use of my outdoor line (as do the HOA rules), but the peak of the 3rd floor is perfect for hanging laundry year round. We also use wooden indoor dryers as needed. As clothes come out of the washer, they are sorted into those which go directly on the nearby line and those which need a few minutes in the dryer to fluff. socks are laid on top of the dryer to use a bit of the drying warmth given off by the dryer. By the time the hangers are hung, the fluffys are ready to hang. Efficient, easy, cheap.
    Other low hanging fruit includes all 54 lightbulbs converted to CFLs or LEDs. Couldn’t put those in the appliances, but did use lower wattage bulbs for them.
    We keep the heat at 62 days and 57 nights in heating season and wear sweaters, etc in the house. We spot warm the livingroom, where we spend a lot of time, with a gas fireplace.
    Slowly replacing curtains with heavier draperies for a bit more r-value for the double pane windows. It’s a newer townhome, so not too many more ways to improve. Hoping to see some ideas here we haven’t thot of yet.

  5. Pingback: cloth diapering | little house on the urban prairie

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