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Hang time: Winter laundry tips to lighten your load


Laundry is a year-round chore but in the cold, wet winter months it can be a challenge getting your items dry. While sunlight is your best friend to help dry your washing outside, you can also opt for compact, indoor solutions that are easy to set up, durable, and will help avoid high electricity bills.

Natasha D’Cruz, home living category manager at AMES Australasia, shares flexible ways to do your laundry that won’t put your home style on the line.

Use the elements

Whether you hang your clothes on a line or an airer, always consider two important elements: airflow and heat. In small houses, it’s especially important to give your laundry space to dry to avoid damp. Spreading clothes out across a few extra racks will help air pass between items and carry away evaporated moisture, reducing drying times.

Any heat will encourage evaporation, but that doesn’t have to mean putting on the heater. Try lining up an airer next to an oven, or hot water system (if it is easily accessible inside). Alternatively, try under central heating vents, every little bit helps.

Design for damp

Heated towel rails are ideal for drying clothes, especially overnight to take advantage of off-peak electricity pricing. This gives you the added advantage of having moisture in a room designed for damp. However, wherever you choose to dry your clothes, make sure air is circulating to avoid mould.

Squash into small wet areas

Placing an airer in the bath or a large shower unit will avoid clothes dripping on the floor, perfect for handwashed laundry which tends to be more waterlogged. You could also consider retractable lines over baths or in shower units to stop messy puddles from forming.

Keep your clothes on the go

There’s no rule that says you have to hang your clothes in the same space. Mobile airers allow you to move your drying around the home. Better yet, the unit can be put on a balcony by day and quickly wheeled in if it starts to rain.

Quick wash drying

If you do a small amount of laundry very frequently, such as gym wear or school uniforms, consider using compact retractable lines in alfresco areas, balconies or over kitchen sinks.

Miniature, retractable options can be set up in go-to spots for regular use and are installed in just three easy steps. Twin and four lines are perfect for cosier spaces. They also work brilliantly as back-ups when you have an extra-large load of laundry to get dry.

Look to the skies (or at least the ceiling)

There are now innovative clotheslines that open up ceiling space and are perfectly suited to garages and covered outdoor areas. These lines feature one frame, with a number of lines, that is hoisted up on all four corners by a central pulley.

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