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Air Out That Dirty Laundry

Are you dreading getting your hydro bill these days like many other Canadians?

Have you been looking for a way to save money or are you hoping to move towards living a homesteading lifestyle? If either of these things is true then you are in the right place my friend. I have composed this article with you in mind, to give you the multiple benefits of using a clothing line, how to line dry no matter where you live, and help you make the switch and start saving money.

The rising cost of living here in Canada it’s getting harder for everyone.

Why use a clothesline?

It seems silly to think about taking the time to hang laundry out when it's easier for a busy person to just throw them in the dryer and be done with it, but the benefits of taking the time to hang out your laundry are far superior to the small amount of time you will save from throwing them in the dryer.

What kind of benefits could there be?

When it comes to using a clothing line instead of the dryer there are a few obvious benefits such as the cost in savings from running the dryer and having to buy dryer sheets but there are other benefits you might not know about that will have you not only saving money on your next hydro bill but will have your clothing looking brighter, smelling fresher and lasting longer.

Nature's Natural Deodorizer will give you that "Fresh Cotton" scent without all those added chemicals or costs.

One of my favorite things about line drying is the smell. There is nothing quite like the fresh smell your laundry will get from hanging it out on the line, especially your sheets. The artificial chemical scents pale in comparison to that crispy fresh breeze scent you get. The added benefit is that this fresh scent doesn't cost anything extra and is excellent for anyone who has sensitive skin.

In addition to the fresh-smelling scent of the outdoors, the warm sun's added benefits will have your laundry looking brighter and cleaner from natural disinfection. The sun's UV rays react with the oxygen in the water of your damp laundry to produce reactive forms of oxygen that kill microorganisms. The UV rays also interfere with the reproduction cycle of bacteria by damaging their DNA causing the fresh breeze scent your laundry will get. This means that instead of masking the smell of your laundry by using a scent bead or another chemical the sun is killing the bacteria growing that causes the smell in the first place.

What about the cost?

The cost difference between using your dryer vs a clothesline is staggering. The average cost of a new dryer in Canada right now is around $700.00 dollars but can go as high as $1400.00. This is just the cost of the appliance, there is still the cost of running it and the impact of using it on the environment. Some studies I have found say the average household family could reduce their carbon footprint by 2,400 pounds a year. When you invest in a clothesline it is a very small price in comparison to buying a dryer. Most clotheslines can be put up for less than $100.00 dollars, and once you have your clothesline up the only other cost is replacing your clothes pins from time to time which I just buy from my local Dollar Store. You will also have a saving from not having to buy dryer sheets or using a fabric softener as there is no static from hang drying. There is also a more notable saving that is from not having to replace your clothing as often.

When you use a clothesline your clothing is hanging and gently being dried in the breeze by the air and the sun as opposed to when you use the dryer. The dryer uses intense heat and a turning cycle that has your clothing being tossed around banging into one another, getting twisted and weakening their fibers, and felting away months and years of potential use. You also run the risk of shrinkage when using the dryer causing you to have to replace clothing that no longer fits. When you use a clothesline to hang dry your laundry even your most delicate items will dry wrinkle-free and in perfect condition.

But what about the time factor?

The dryer might seem like it is a huge time saver but let us consider a few things first. When you use the dryer generally speaking you have to be there to get your laundry out when the cycle finishes or else your clothing will start to wrinkle. When you use a clothing line this just isn't the case. Your laundry can hang on the line for hours after it is finished drying. This then gives you flexibility on when you want to take your laundry off the line and fold it. I have been known to do this well after dark some days in the summer.

The other point I want to bring up is the benefit of taking an average time of 10 minutes to hang out a load of laundry as a break from your normal daily tasks. Give yourself this 10-minute break on a warm sunny day to enjoy the weather, feel the warmth of the sun, smell the fresh air, and allow this time to benefit you. The added benefit to not only getting your laundry done is the Vitamin D you will get from taking this short break outside, it can help to improve your sleep, improve your focus and boost your creativity, help to reduce anxiety, and help reduce your mental stress making hanging out your laundry a positive break.

Different styles of clotheslines for every yard size

When you hear the word clothesline most people think of the traditional rotary line made of poly core, but depending on where you live you might not have the space for one of these. If you happen to live where you have a smaller yard or maybe even no yard space there are still options.

Traditional Pulley Line - this is a clothesline that is attached to or near your house and then the other end is attached to a large tree or a pole at the other end of your yard. This clothesline allows you to stand in one place and reel your clothes in and out. This is the most common type of clothesline in rural living.

Basic Line - This is similar to the pulley line but it doesn't have the pulley, making it a stationary line that you walk around hanging your clothing on. The basic line needs to be closer to the ground so you can reach it and it's a great option if you live in a place with a large tree to attach it to. If you don't have trees you will have to have a large post, a fence, or something sturdy to attach the line on.

Rotary Line - This style is very common in the UK and it's a great option for a smaller yard as it doesn't take up a lot of space but can hold a lot of laundries. The rotary line opens up like an umbrella and will rotate allowing you to stand in one spot to hang out your load of laundry. Once your laundry is dry and off the line, you can close your line back up and it doesn't take up any more space than a patio umbrella.

Fold-up Clothing Rack - The fold-up clothing rack is probably the most versatile as you can use it outdoors and indoors and when it's not in use you can store it with very little space making it ideal for those living in smaller homes, condos, and apartments. There are many different sizes and materials to choose from, some are made of wood and others are made of metal.

Depending on your living space, budget, and how many loads of laundry you intend to do in a day there is an option that will work for you. Some people might even have a combination of 2 different styles depending on what they like. Finding the perfect line for you and your family will be what's key. Once you have your clothesline outside all setup and are using it regularly you will dread the long winter months here in Canada when hanging your laundry outside is less than ideal.

Line drying year-round - no matter where you live

Great for small indoor drying space
Ikea Clothing Racks

Most people don't know that you can still use your clothesline in the winter months even if there is snow on the ground. When it comes to hanging laundry outside even in the cold of winter there are a few things you will want to remember before stepping outside with your laundry. If you happen to live in sunny California then you don't need to consider this as you won't have snowy winter days - lucky you!

Plan ahead - Look at the weekly weather and see what days are looking the best to line dry your clothes. You will want to look for days that they are not predicting snow or days that have high precipitation. Breezy, sunny days are ideal, and even if it's -10 as long as there is a breeze your laundry will dry.

Hang out before noon - It is important to know that drying time in the winter months will be longer than in the summer. Generally speaking, if you have your laundry out before noon this will give it enough time to dry and for you to get it off the line before the early setting sun.

Touch up - Some days you might still need to add some extra drying time to your laundry when it comes inside. This can be done by hanging your still damp item in the house or if you wish, tossing them in the dryer for 10-20 minutes to finish. Having an indoor drying space is great if you do need to hang dry inside.

Drying Indoors

If you are fortunate enough to have a good size laundry room then I highly recommend having some sort of indoor drying system. Retractable lines are great as they only have to be out when being used or simply adding some Ikea clothing racks is fabulous for someone who intends to hang dry a lot of the time. Foldable clothing racks are great if you want to have one hanging system that can be used indoors or out.

Hanging wet laundry inside during the winter months might sound strange but it is something to consider if you find your home to be dryer from all the indoor heating. In the colder temperatures and dry air of winter, typically there is a drop in humidity level inside homes. Lower humidity can contribute to dry nasal passages that welcome cold and flu viruses. Drying clothes on indoor racks can add humidity to a home's air during dry winter weather helping to mitigate dry skin, hair, and a dry nasal passage.

Saving money and the environment

Making the switch to using a clothing line is one the easiest way to put money back into your pocket by saving on a large bill. It is also one of the easiest ways to help reduce your carbon footprint even if you only choose to line dry part of the time, it all adds up.

An outdoor clothesline truly offers you a great many benefits such as saving money, saving energy, increasing the life expectancy of clothing, contributing to the overall fresh appearance of your clothes, and helping save the environment as well.

If you have found this article helpful, it would mean the world to me if you would leave a comment or share it with a friend.

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