Line-Drying Problems Solved

There are lots of reasons to line dry clothes, but sometimes a single problem can make it seem like more of a hassle than it's worth. If your line-drying efforts have been plagued with problems, check out these simple solutions.

I Can't Line-Dry Clothes Because I'm Allergic to Pollen.

Clothes Drying Rack
Clothes Drying Rack. Imgorthand/E+/Getty Images

Set up a clothesline in your laundry room, basement or garage. Use foldable drying racks wherever you have room inside, or hang clothes from your shower rod. If it's just one type of pollen that bothers you, wait for that pollen season to pass; then, hang your clothes outdoors.

Line-Drying Makes My Laundry Stiff.

Girl Standing By Clothesline
Girl Standing By Clothesline. PraxisPhotography/Moment Open/Getty Images

Line-drying doesn't have to mean settling for crunchy clothes. Just follow a few simple tips, and your laundry will come out soft and fluffy every time – even the towels.

I Don't Want My Clothes to Fade

Whites on Clothesline
Whites on Clothesline. Ghislain & Marie David de Lossy/Cultura/Getty Images

Prevent fading by hanging your colored laundry inside out, in a shady spot or under a covered patio or carport. As long as there's a gentle breeze, you clothes will dry just as well in the shade. Still worried about your colored laundry? Then, dry your darks indoors, and hang just your whites outdoors. The sun will bleach away any stains, and help your whites to stay white longer.

My HOA or Town Doesn't Allow Clotheslines.

Types of Drying Racks and Clotheslines
Types of Drying Racks and Clotheslines. dumayne/Digital Vision Vectors/Getty Images

Set up drying racks in the backyard when you have a load to dry. Then, take them back inside when you're done, or stick to drying your laundry inside. An retractable indoor clothesline or drying rack will still get the job done.

It Takes Longer to Line-Dry Clothes

Woman Hanging Clothes on Line
Woman Hanging Clothes on Line. Ariel Skelley/Photographer's Choice/Getty Images

Line-drying clothes is a mostly hands-off process. Spend 15 minutes (or less) hanging your clothes, and the sun will take it from there.

Feel like you're really slow at hanging clothes? Once you do it a few times, you'll get much faster at it.

I Don't Want to Have to Rewash Clothes, If Something Gets on Them While Drying.

Clothes Drying Under Roof
Clothes Drying Under Roof. Westend61/Getty Images

If you have a lot of birds in your yard, hang your clothes under a covered porch or carport, in your garage or in an outbuilding (a barn would work perfectly). If dust is a problem, avoid hanging clothes on especially windy days or close to the road. To prevent clothes from falling off the line, use enough clothespins to keep them firmly in place. Most items will require two, but heavier items may need more.

I Don't Want to Worry That My Clothes Will Get Caught Out in the Rain.

Vintage Linens Drying on Drying Rack
Vintage Linens Drying on Drying Rack. Sony Farrell/Photodisc/Getty Images

Only hang your clothes out on days when they aren't calling for rain, or stick to hanging your clothes under covered areas.

I Don't Want to Hang Out Clothes in Cold Weather.

Girls Hanging Clothes on Drying Rack
Girls Hanging Clothes on Drying Rack. Hero Images/Getty Images

Hang your clothes outdoors when the weather is nice. Hang your clothes indoors, or use a clothes dryer when the weather turns cold. It's okay to be a part-time line-dryer.

I Don't Want Clothespin Marks on My Clothes.

Hanging Clothes with Clothespins
Hanging Clothes with Clothespins. Izabela Habur/E+/Getty Images

Learn how to hang clothes properly, and clothespin marks won't be a problem.

  • How to Hang Clothes on a Clothesline

I Don't Want My Neighbors to See My Unmentionables on the Clothesline

Underwear on a Clothesline
Underwear on a Clothesline. Peter Dazeley/The Image Bank/Getty Images

Dry undies and bras indoors. Stick everything else on your outdoor clothesline. Or hide them on the inner lines.

I Don't Have Room for a Clothesline.

Umbrella Clothesline
Umbrella Clothesline. Liam Norris/Taxi/Getty Images

Install an umbrella clothesline, which can be folded up (and put away) when not in use, or get a retractable clothesline.

Still Wondering If Line-Drying Your Clothes is Worth It?

Colorful Clothesline
Colorful Clothesline. Andrew Holt/Photographer's Choice/Getty Images

 Here's how to calculate how much you'll save by giving your dryer a break.