‘Best time’ to hang your laundry outside to dry ‘quicker’

Despite the vast array of modern appliances, hanging laundry outside is still the best (and cheapest) way to get clothes dry. However, it can be difficult to know which conditions are the best for drying laundry. Fantastic Services’ cleaning supervisor Lily Cameron has shared the “best time” to hang clothes outside to dry and her top tips to get the “best results” from drying clothes outside.

The expert argued there is no definitive answer to that question. She said: “The best time to start hanging laundry outside will depend on factors such as the weather, the climate of the area, and the personal preference of the homeowner.”

However, generally she argued that the “best time” to hang laundry outside is on a dry, sunny and breezy day with low humidity levels. 

Lily explained: “This will help the clothes dry quickly and completely, prevent the development of musty smells and the breeze will help take the moisture away. 

“For most locations, spring and summer tend to be the best seasons for that because the weather is usually warmer and drier.”

When it comes to what time of day to hang clothes outside, the laundry pro said: “If you live in a location with a hot and humid climate, it’d be better to hang your laundry out earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon, when the sun isn’t that strong. 

“This will help prevent your clothes from getting stiff and feeling uncomfortable to wear after they’ve dried.

“Besides that, it’s also important to be aware if there are any local regulations that might prohibit outdoor clothes drying. 

“In some areas, hanging laundry outside isn’t allowed. Don’t forget to also check the forecast before hanging your clothes outside and to keep an eye on them.”

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Hanging laundry outside might sound very simple, however, there are a few tips to follow to avoid laundry wrinkling and getting stiff.

Lily shared that one of her “best tips” for “better results” when drying clothes outside is to put them out to dry straight away.

She said: “Get the clothes out on the drying lines ideally first thing in the morning so they have the maximum amount of time to dry. This applies especially for cooler months.”

However, before hanging them on the washing line, households should give them a shake. Lily said: “Shake the clothes vigorously before hanging them to prevent wrinkles and help them dry evenly. “The best technique for drying clothes outside is to expose as much of their surface as possible to the sun and breeze so they’ll dry quicker.”

When hanging laundry on the washing line, the expert noted that it’s important to avoid overlapping items of clothing to give them space to breathe. Air needs to be able to circulate around the items – to ensure a quality, even dry. Leaving an inch between each item will give them the space they need to blow in the wind and dry. 

For those drying lighter items, Lily recommended pinning them together. She said: “Pin lighter items together on especially hot days without a breeze to slow the drying process and prevent them from getting stiff. The faster a clothing item dries, the stiffer it’ll be.”

Whereas, heavier items of clothing, such as jeans and towels, should be hung separately from lighter items as they can take longer to dry. The expert said: “This will help all your clothes dry evenly.”

When it comes to hanging items like bed sheets and duvets outside, the expert recommended hanging them by the edges instead of folding them over the line to allow the breeze to “dry them quicker”. 

For t-shirts and blouses, they should be hung upside down to prevent bumps on the shoulders. 

Lily also recommended that clothes be bought inside before it starts to get dark. She explained: “Clothes left outside overnight can collect dew and become damp, which will prolong the drying time. 

“However, there’s an exception to this rule. In the summer, you can safely hang your laundry before you go to bed.”

When it comes to collecting the clothes, the laundry guru advised giving the clothing items a “sharp snap” to “soften them” and get rid of any insects that may be on them.

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