How to Dry Clothes Fast Without a Dryer

how to dry clothes fast without a dryer image

It’s easy to dry clothes using a dryer. This household appliance can remove moisture from a load of laundry in one go. The drying process takes less than an hour. Afterward, you get crisp and dried clothes fresh from the tumble dryer. It is a powerhouse and a staple in most homes. Moreover, it is efficient, especially during the cooler months. However, using a dryer to dry clothes every laundry day can consume a lot of energy.

You can still manage to dry your clothes fast without a dryer on hand. It may take a few hours, but it’s definitely worth the effort. Read on to find out how to dry clothes fast without a dryer.

Around 80 percent of American homes have a clothes dryer. This machine uses hot airflow to dry wet clothes faster. Indeed, the dryer is one of the most widely used home appliances in the country. However, according to the National Development and Reform Commission, most residential dryers are not energy efficient. The Energy Saving Trust also agrees to the claim that tumble dryers are among the most expensive items to run at home. Whether you want to save on energy sources or don’t have access to a tumble dryer at the moment, you can still dry clothes without a dryer. 

Getting Rid Of Excess Moisture

Here’s are our top tips when it comes to getting rid of excess moisture fast without a dryer:

Use The Fastest Spin Cycle On The Washer

washing machine running on spin mode with the control board on display

You can use the high spin setting on your washing machine to remove as much water from your clothes. Doing so will allow your wet laundry to dry faster.

Moreover, you spend less energy when using the high spin setting of your washing machine to dry your clothes instead of using a dryer. The Energy Saver website posted that a clothes washer spends around 590 kWh, while the dryer spends a whopping 769 kWh. Indeed, the increased energy you need to use a washing machine is nothing compared to the tumble dryer.

When using this method, it’s best not to overload your washing machine. Your laundry could end up as damp after the cycle if you pack it too tight.

Spin Out The Excess Water Using A Salad Spinner

salad spinner on top of kitchen

If you run out of uniforms and are hesitant to use the dryer to dry a single piece of clothing, try using a salad spinner. This kitchen tool is typically used to separate excess moisture from salad greens. If you just hand washed a single shirt, you can use a salad spinner to remove the excess water from clothes. You still need to air dry your clothes afterward. But it helps cut the drying time for sure.

Wring Out Excess Moisture By Rolling Clothes On A Large Dry Towel

yellow t-shirt rolled into a blue towel like a log

The key to drying clothes is to get rid of excess moisture. Wringing out water on clothes using a towel can help them dry faster.

Put a fluffy towel on the table and lay down your wet clothing on top. Roll the towel and garment together like a sausage. Make sure you roll the towel tightly. The towel squeezes excess water out of the clothes by absorbing the moisture. If the clothing is still wet after the first try, you can repeat it using another clean and dry towel.

Afterward, you can hang clothes inside in a drying rack or clothesline and let them air dry. Make sure your clothes receive enough airflow.

Air Dry Clothes Outside On A Windy Day

colorful baby clothes clipped to a clothesline

Seize the chance to air dry clothes on a windy day. A good airflow speeds up the process of clothes drying. Evaporation is high when the wind blows fast. The air scatters water molecules on clothes which causes clothes to dry.

You can dry clothes quickly by air drying them outside on a clothes horse or clothesline.

Using Heat To Dry Out Excess Moisture

The heat can quickly evaporate water and dry clothes. Here are our top tips that use heat to hasten the drying process:

Hang Clothes On A Clothesline or Drying Rack Under The Sun

clothes drying rack with clothes on against blue background

It’s best to hang your clothes outside during the warmer months. The warmth from the sun effectively evaporates water from wet clothes. Sunshine or solar radiation is vital for drying clothes as it provides a source of free energy to evaporate the water in your clothes. The heat from the sun dries clothes quicker. You can completely dry your clothes outside on a hot day by line drying them.

Hang Your Damp Clothes On A Towel Warmer

towel dryer installed in a tiled bathroom

If you don’t have a towel warmer at home, you may want to buy one after reading this post. A towel warmer is a great addition to your home. It can allow you to have a luxurious-feeling towel after a bath. As they warm towels, they can also dry out the excess moisture from your damp clothes if you’re in a rush and couldn’t use the dryer. Just hang them on the towel warmer for a few hours and you’re good to go.  

Dry Off Dampness Using An Iron and Towel Combination

iron and towels on top of ironing board

You can use your iron and ironing board to dry damp clothes. The high heat from the iron can evaporate moisture and dry clothes faster. It’s also a win-win situation as you can iron your clothes quicker when they are still damp. The water relaxes the fabric that makes it easy to get rid of creases.

Here’s how to safely dry clothes using an iron:

  1. Place the garment on an ironing board and lay a thin towel on top of it.
  2. Plugin your iron and set the heat on high.
  3. Press the iron onto the towel firmly.
  4. Make sure that you turn the garment over so you press all sides. Also, pay attention to the underarm and pockets.

By placing a thin towel on top of the clothing, you reduce the chance of ruining the fabric associated with putting hot iron directly on wet garments.

Use a Hairdryer To Quickly Dry Clothes

black hair dryer against brown background

Say you are staying in a hotel and need to dry a t-shirt, you can use a handheld blow dryer to dry it fast. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Wring out as much water as you can and lay the garment on a dry and clean surface.
  2. Set the hairdryer on high. The high heat from the blower and the airflow can quickly dry clothes.
  3. Dry the clothing by holding the blower near it. Work your way around the garment.
  4. Blow the hot air inside out the garment and pay close attention to the pockets and collars.

Unconventional Ways To Dry Clothes Fast

Use A Mangle or Wringer Device

an old green mangle with a piece of cloth in it

Before there was an electric dryer, people used to dry clothes using a mangle or wringer device. However, these portable devices are still around today. A clothes wringer can help remove the excess water on clothes by pressing or wringing the fabric. The process can make air-drying in a clothes rack quicker.

Try Freeze Drying

freezing clothesline during winter

You can dry your clothes without heat. Line drying clothes during the winter may raise eyebrows, but it’s a bright idea. During the cold months, you can hang your clothes to dry outside by freeze-drying clothes or using sublimation. During this process, the moisture on clothes turns to gas. Thus the moisture can  just be whisked away without evaporating.

How About Using A Microwave Or Oven To Dry Clothes?

It can be tempting to use a microwave to quickly dry your clothing. The machine can dry small items such as socks or other small articles of clothing. However, it should not be used on t-shirts, jeans, or bedsheets. Drying large items on the microwave can cause house fires, and it’s not worth the risk. Your best bet is to use the methods mentioned above to dry your clothes without using the dryer.

In Conclusion

While the dryer is an indispensable part of every American household, there are other drying methods to try if you want to save on energy costs. While they may be time-consuming, they can still get the job done especially if you plan ahead.

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About Sonia Peters

Sonia Peters is a communications specialist and a freelance writer. As a mother of a young boy, she's a self-declared expert on dealing with stains and grimes after a fun day with her child.