Thursday, February 7, 2008

#169 - High and Dry

Drying My Clothes on a Rack

Remember my wish list for Christmas? How I wanted a drying rack? Yeah, never got it. "Santa" said he could only find ones made in China and didn't want to violate any of my rules. Of course, "Santa" does know how to drill holes and buy dowels, so I'm not sure why he felt he was out of options, but anyhow..... I didn't get one in December, so I finally broke down and bought one today. A drying rack, that is. Check her out:




Isn't she a beaut? It folds up to nearly nothin' and stores itself right beside the dryer when not in use. It doesn't hold a ton of stuff, but I'm still hoping to go all "Mission Impossible" and install a hidden clothesline this spring, despite the HOA regulations. In the meantime, I'll be able to dry sweaters, napkins and small items indoors on my rack. I figure I'll pile on as much as I can and then dry whatever's left in the machine. Judging from the amount of stuff it holds, I'd say that in the course of a week it will save me one full dryer load. Of course, it helps that I supplement with my "less-than-legit" outdoor drying system too.


Oh yeah, baby. I bet the HOA would LOVE it if I hung all my laundry off the deck! As my sister is fond of saying: I really put the "K" in "Klassy".


Savings:

One dryer load per week. Since our model dryer runs at 3,000 watts x 1 hour per load, that's 3 kWh per week, 12 kWh per month, 156 kWh per year.


Difficulty Level: 2 out of 5

It's not too difficult, but it does require more work than just throwing all the laundry in the dryer. Plus, I know hubby and the boy will complain about the "crunchy" clothes. Me? I like it. So until everything is being line-dried, I'll just rack-dry my own clothes, napkins, towels, etc.

17 comments:

Wendy said...

I feel it is my duty to warn you that once you get to drying clothes on the line, you won't be able to put them in the dryer without a twinge of guilt ... or some similar not-so-pleasant emotion :). Beware! You might start to find you can't use any of your electric appliances ... except the washing machine ... and the dishwasher.

Green Bean said...

I'm with Wendy. Everytime I throw a load in the dryer - mostly on rainy days or if I have big backlog or if the little one puked all over his bedding - I feel guilty when I push the button.

leslie said...

We are going to have to do something about HOA rules.
I live in Sun-o-rama Tucson, Arizona, and in an HOA that doesn't "allow" clotheslines. I am totally unsure what the criteria for prohibiting them would be. Aesthetics?
I still tie my rope between the pillars on my back porch. It's so hot and dry here, that by the time I get to the last piece of stuff hung up, the first piece is dry. No kidding.
And why don't we have every square inch of roof top in this town covered in solar panels??? There's even restrictions on them in the HOA's rules, too.
By the way, nice rack, Erin.

Anonymous said...

Proving once again, you can take the girl out of the country...

Anonymous said...

If you're running the dryer anyway, does this really save energy? You know the caveat about only doing full loads. Of course, I guess the smaller load would dry faster if you're using the moisture sensing thingie. I don't really know. One of the *best* things about the drying rack, is you can leave the stuff there and it doesn't get all wrinkled, like it does if you can't get right to the dryer when the load is done. Good luck with the outdoor line - hanging laundry outside on a beautiful day is a lovely experience!

Burbanmom said...

Leslie,

WOW! Why didn't I think of this before? What a great way to get an ego-boost! Damn, wish I'd thought of the "nice rack" comment so I could have used it for the post title!!!!!

Ven. Wuling said...

www.lehmans.com has several dryers that are made in the USA.

leslie said...

Go ahead and use it. You can edit my comment :)
It was just too funny to pass up. Too many years working with men for my gutter brain not to go there...

Anonymous said...

erin, we have a similar HOA rule here against clotheslines. i get around it in a frugal but hey, it works! way! i use our retractable dog leash. yep, just hang the handle on one end of a tree branch, stretch out the leash and loop it around and clip the other end across the yard on another branch. it works just fine and saved me the cost of purchasing an official version of the retractable clothesline. i agree with the other posters tho, once you get used to this method of drying you'll cringe with guilt everytime you are forced to use your dryer again. meanwhile,don't forget to unplug your dryer!

Fake Plastic Fish said...

Erin, of course you hang sweaters on your rack. Where else would you hang them? And napkins too, if you're a messy eater. But what small items are we talking about here? I'm getting concerned.

Burbanmom said...

Beth,

Well it ain't my underpants, that's for damn sure. Once you go maternity-style you never go back! Plus? You can tuck them up into your bra, for a unitard kind of feel. And NOTHING looks hotter than the combination of hip-hugger jeans and saggy grannypants that balloon out over the top of 'em. Try it for Valentine's Day. Trust me.

paulahewitt said...

Im not sure what HOA stands for, but I am correct in assuming your local governing body/housing estate rule say you cant have an outside clothes line? That is ridiculous. I assumed that dryer use was so high in US because of the weather. We have a collapsible outside clothes line (attached to house not a hills hoist)that I use 95% of the time. when the dryer died (I got it to dry nappies)I replaced it with an indoor retactable clothesline installed in our double garage - it hold two full loads of washing - great for rainy days.

Burbanmom said...

Paula, Oh my goodness, I never even THOUGHT about using the garage! What a great idea! Do you have any problems with the clothes smelling garage-y? If not, I could totally put up one of those pulley clothes lines!

Jane said...

Found you through Crunchy... I have an awesome drying rack from IKEA. Probably made in China admitted. If I hang some shirts and stuff from hangers around the perimeter, I can get two full loads of wash to dry on it. Also folds up slim. It's powder coated metal so it won't rust or get moldy.

Big D said...

::sigh:: I am waaaay behind in my reading.

anyway, as for drying clothing outside. I have not yet tried it. There are several reasons, none of which are good enough, but here goes:

1. there is a really gross black dust that seems to get on everything outside my place - i have assumed this is because of being in the city, but perhaps I am overly sensitive to this and need to shut up and hang up.

2. living in the city also means limited or no access to a good place to hang a line. I'm in transit right now what with the condo on the market, so maybe i'll try hanging a line at my brother's place and see what happens.

I, too, like the "crunchy" clothing... which is why I use my drying rack (I pulled it out of a big pile-o-"refuse" on moving-out day at Vandy - which i think makes up for the fact it was mostly likely made in china. I wish you could see the amount of stuff that is THROWN AWAY on Vandy moving-out days. it's sinful).

paulahewitt said...

only now popped back to see rest of comments - as I said - glad you liked the idea! - i dont have a problem with the clothes smelling all garagey - but we have 3 garage doors (ie two at front and one at the back so we can drive through it) so we gets lots of breeze through - i dont think it would be a problem anyway.

carrotlover said...

I really like your blog and your commitment to making green changes. I'm a "rabid" clothesline user and am glad to live in a place where I can dry outside as well as inside. Here's a link to info about getting your legislators to pass a Right to Dry law. Seems to override HOAs and has passed in Florida, Utah.
http://www.laundrylist.org/advocacy/righttodry.htm
Good luck.