Tumble dryers can use quite a lot of energy. But hanging your clothes out on the line just isn’t possible when it’s raining or during the winter months. However, there are some steps you can take to increase the efficiency of your tumble dryer, making it more environmentally friendly and hopefully decreasing your energy bills at the same time.
1. If your clothes still feel wetter than they should at the end of the wash, put them back into the washing machine on the spin cycle at highest speed to get rid of that excess moisture.
2. Clean your lint filters religiously. If the filters are blocked then the motor will need to work harder to push the air through the dryer and your clothes will take longer to dry. It’s also worth occasionally vacuuming out the lint filter cavity using your vacuum’s crevice tool.
3. If you have a vented dryer, you should check your vent hose for lint build-up too. A blocked vent hose will likewise put more pressure on the motor.
4. When loading the dryer, untangle clothes and bedding as you go. Compacted fabrics will take longer to dry.
5. Don’t overload your tumble dryer. Putting too much fabric in at once not only reduces the efficiency, it can also cause undue wear and tear on the machine. It will also increase the time spent ironing to get the wrinkles out.
6. Use energy saving dryer balls – they can reduce drying time by up to 25%.
7. Sort your laundry by fabric type and use the appropriate heat setting for each. Delicate items should be dried at a much lower temperature and for a shorter amount of time than items like denim. If you sort your laundry, not only will your drying time be shorter but your clothes should last longer.
If your tumble dryer comes to the end of its life and you need to buy a new one, go for one that has an ‘A’ or ‘B’ energy rating.