Saving money can be accomplished with electric clothes dryers or gas clothes dryers. Both appliances dry the clothing by tumbling, heat and airing. The fifth largest energy consumer in the home is the clothes dryer.
Use a Clothing Rod
Air drying most of the clothing saves money. If a fixed clothing rod is not available or there is not enough room to install one, a portable clothing rod can be purchased to use in the laundry area of the home. Portable rods save space as they can be stored away when not in use.
Run the clothing in the dryer for a short period of time to remove wrinkles and then hang the clothing on the rod (on hangers) to finish by air drying. Lightweight clothing, such as T-shirts air-dry quickly. Heavier clothing such as jeans, sweats and jackets will air-dry over night. Over-drying clothing increases static electricity and shrinkage while decreasing fabric life, so air drying clothing gives a money savings on clothing purchases.
Only Dry Full Loads
Gather washed laundry to dry only full loads, but do not overfill the dryer. Drying small loads wastes energy and overloading can create mechanical problems with the appliance. Use the dryer consecutively, taking advantage of the heated drum for the next load. Waiting for a period of time before starting the dryer again allows the drum to cool and thus causes extra energy to reheat.
Vents Must be Clean
Filters allowed to clog present a real fire danger to the home. Dryer manufacturers recommend keeping the filter clean. Dryer sheets form a solid film over the filter. Try running water over the filter. If the water “puddles” on the filter, use a cleaning solution to brush the film from the surface until water flows freely through the filter. This procedure should be done on a monthly basis if dryer sheets are used continuously.
Keep the outside vent clean to allow for free air-flow and prevent outside air from entering the home.
Dryers with Sensors
New model dryers are more energy efficient. When purchasing a new dryer, look for the feature of a dryness sensor that automatically turns the dryer off when it detects the desired level of dryness. Sensors are usually located inside the drum or inside the exhaust vent. A sensor located inside the drum is more costly, but more efficient.
Drying for Free
Hanging clothing outside saves the most money. However, weather or local restrictions can limit this extra savings. Wind and solar energy are free, and line-dried sheets smell heavenly!
Since a clothing dryer is a major drain on the household budget, using these tips can greatly reduce the cost of doing the family laundry. Slight changes in laundry day procedures, with little effort, can make a huge difference in monthly expenses.
Source: Public Service Company of Oklahoma