Line-Drying Laundry Problems Solved

Basket of laundry in front of clothes line with clothes hanging to air dry

The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

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.

  • 01 of 10

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

    Clothes hanging outside on clothesline next to sunflowers giving off pollen

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

    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.

  • 02 of 10

    Line-Drying Makes My Laundry Stiff

    Stiff gray towel held in front of clothesline with clothes air drying by flowers and shed

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

    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.

  • 03 of 10

    I Don't Want My Clothes to Fade

    White clothes and bedsheets hanging on clothesline to dry without fading

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

    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, ​your 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.

  • 04 of 10

    My HOA or Town Doesn't Allow Clotheslines.

    Clothes and towels hanging on indoor drying rack to air dry

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

    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. ​A retractable indoor clothesline or drying rack will still get the job done.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    It Takes Longer to Line-Dry Clothes

    Clothes hanging on clothesline as sun sets behind sunflowers with laundry basket in front

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

    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.

  • 06 of 10

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

    Clothes in laundry basket to be rewashed in front of clothesline with clothes hanging

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

    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.

  • 07 of 10

    I Don't Want Clothespin Marks on My Clothes.

    Clothespins added to towel and clothes on clothe line to air dry outside

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

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

  • 08 of 10

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

    Underwear and sport bras hanging on clothesline to air dry

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

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

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    I Don't Have Room for a Clothesline

    Clothesline with cord mechanism hanging clothes to air dry closeup

    The Spruce / Meg MacDonald

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

  • 10 of 10

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

    Colorful Clothesline

    Andrew Holt/Photographer's Choice / Getty Images

    Using an electric dryer can cost you. Giving your dryer a break can lead to noticeable energy savings.