Let the sun kiss your Laundry BY: LINDY LUTNESKY

Laundry hangs in the breeze absorbing the scent of summer

Laundry┬áhanging outside is not just for Italy’s streets! Your very own backyard is a great place to allow your linens to dry after the wash. You will be saving energy and money, while getting sun-kissed clothes, towels and sheets with the fresh scent of summertime!

Take your closet outside and reap the benefits…

Of all appliances in the household, the dryer ranks 2nd next to the water heater on energy use, with approximately 1800-5000 watts of electricity being used. About 87 percent of people use a dryer at home and time of use must be factored in as well; however, most of us wash 2-5 loads a week so the impact on the environment adds up.
There are benefits to drying your closet outside. Clothes may not be as soft as a dryer with fabric softener in it delivers, but your clothes will actually last longer due to the gentleness of drying your clothes out in the sun. The lint that is left over in the dryer afterwards from a cycle is proof of the hardness a dryer can have on clothes. In addition, there is less fire-risk without the lint!

The smell of your clothes is another added benefit. Nothing compares to the truly fresh scent of clothes that have been swinging in the sunlight. Boxes of detergent and fabric softener claim “fresh,” but it is a manufactured fresh which defeats the point in the end.
Clothes and the like that dry outside on a line also receive the sun’s natural bleaching effect and disinfectant properties. The UV rays kill bacteria and remove stains, which means you can rely less upon bleach products.
Besides the physical benefits of hanging laundry out to dry, the task of hanging up or taking down your clothes, allows you time to get outside and enjoy the outdoors. Often you will find yourself thinking about things that this noisy world doesn’t give you much time to do. It can become a time to meditate on things of importance to you while getting your vitamin D and your laundry done!

Choose your setup

It is simple to set up your backyard or balcony for laundry. Tying a cotton rope between posts, trees, or a fence is one setup. You can buy laundry line in a store, but these will be coated with plastic which does not grip as well as cotton rope. Secure your linens and such tightly with clips so they do not fly away! Another option is to get a retractable clothesline that has a hook on one end that can be attached to some receptacle. When you are done with the line, it coils back up into a metal container. Lastly, the quintessential 50’s umbrella clothesline…this is different from the others in that it has several racks with line built-in and it has the marvelous ability to catch the wind and spin, thereby drying clothes more quickly!

Extend line drying to other seasons

In the Northwest, we are limited to how much time we can line dry our clothes due to frequent occurrences of rain; however, line drying your laundry can still be done inside your house too. Fold up racks made of wood or plastic can be placed near heat sources such as a heater, wood stove, or water heater. You can also utilize your garage or basement with clothes lines too. If you don’t want to line dry inside, try to outside this summer. You will likely enjoy it!

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