Laundry SOS: How to dry your clothes in winter
No tumble dryer? No problem. Our tips will help you master how to dry clothes in winter, inside or outside
The cold, damp winter months can make drying clothes in winter a challenge, particularly when you don’t have a tumble dryer. In summer drying clothes is much easier as your homes and garden are naturally warmer so clothes can air dry quickly. But drying clothes indoors in the winter can take up a lot of room and a lot of time, often leaving your clothes with that damp and musky scent. And drying clothes outside in the winter is even more challenging! With rain, snow and plunging temperatures to contend with, your clothes will be left feeling damp and in desperate need of being dried.
- Hang your clothes straight away. Don’t leave them in the machine or a laundry basket as this can cause them to smell musty and even grow mould. If you’re tight on space, you can create more hanging room by simply using curtain rods. Hang an extra shower curtain rod along the top of your bathtub/shower area, and you’ve instantly got a hidden indoor spot to do some drying! Then hang your wet clothes on plastic hangers on your rod and it won’t matter if they drip a little, thanks to the drain below.
When you’re drying clothes indoors, try to position your washing near an open window or somewhere with good airflow. Avoid layering too many clothes on top of one another as this can delay the drying process. Instead, spread clothes evenly at least an inch apart and turn them over after a few hours to help them dry evenly.
Wash your clothes with a fabric conditioner such as Lenor Outdoorable to prevent the build-up of damp odours and deliver unbeatable freshness for up to a week along with that heavenly softness that will make sure your clothes aren’t left with that ‘just dried’ stiff feeling.
- And always make sure items are thoroughly dried out before putting them away. This will help prevent mould and mildew from growing in areas with poor air circulation such as wardrobes and drawers – and help clothes stay fresher for longer.
- Rinse and repeat.
Use the highest spin cycle setting on washing machine– Where possible and your clothing care label permits, use the highest spin cycle setting to wring out all excess water.
Put clothes on for an extra spin cycle– and if your clothes can tolerate it, you can put clothes on an extra spin cycle. Your laundry will come out of the machine noticeably less wet and will consequently dry faster too. Again, make sure that you don’t spin your delicate items on a high cycle, as they may get damaged.
Before hanging clothes up, roll them in a towel to soak up excess water- Before you start drying clothes outside in winter, roll each item in a towel and soak up as much of the moisture as possible. Squeeze together, and your towel should be able to absorb a fair bit of water.
Use a drying rack outside- Rather than hanging your clothes on a clothesline, try putting them all on a drying rack outside that can be easily transported. That way, you can pick up all of your clothes and move them indoors or outdoors quickly in the event of rain, without the hassle of pegging and unpegging everything from a clothes line the moment it starts to rain.
Put clothes outside early in the day– When you’re drying clothes outside in winter, it’s best to start as early as possible. The more sun you can expose your clothing to in the winter, the better and it will increase the chances of them drying faster.
Plan your laundry days according to the weather forecast– Check the weather forecast before you wash and decide to dry your clothes outside. That way you can make sure you’re hanging your clothes out to dry at the best possible time. But remember, winter weather can be fickle and however much you plan, there’s always a risk of wet weather!
Spread and shake your clothes out– Lastly one of the most important tips when drying your clothes outside in winter is to make sure you spread and shake them out. Shake each item out before you hang your laundry as it will help them dry faster and be less creased. Spread them out and this will help them to dry faster too.