I may be one of the few women who likes to do laundry, but I’d take that over washing dishes any day! I’m proud to say that my washer and dryer are over 15 years old and still going strong. One of the reasons for the longevity of my dryer is because I take good care of it. If you follow these three major tips, you’ll be sure to get the most out of your dryer and you’ll save money on future energy costs.

1. Keep up with dryer maintenance

Keeping up with your dryer’s maintenance will make your dryer last longer and make sure that it’s as efficient as possible.

  • Lint impedes the flow of air through the filter causing increased drying time, more wear on the dryer and increased energy usage. Making sure to clean your lint trap after every use and clear the outside vent of lint at least once or twice per year will help you keep your dryer up to par.
  • Dryer sheets leave a residue on your lint filter, so make sure to clean the filter thoroughly if you use dryer sheets. You can also used a balled up piece of aluminum foil to avoid this residue. It will last a long time, reduce static cling, and keep your clothes soft.
  • Make sure the dryer is vented to the outside to remove the hot air. Check the connection to make sure it doesn’t come loose during use. If the air vents behind the dryer, it will increase the moisture and heat in the home, thereby increasing the cost of cooling your home.

2. Reduce your dry time

You should set the dryer cycle based on the amount of laundry, type of laundry, and how dry you want your clothes to be.

  • Don’t skip on the spin cycle of the washing machine. I put my towels through 2 spin cycles because it drastically reduces the amount of water left in the towels, which means that they’ll dry faster when less water is involved.
  • Time a load of towels to see when they actually dry. I’m a creature of habit and will automatically put the dryer on 60 minutes, but realistically, the towels will dry in about 45 minutes if the load is an average size.
  • If you have a gas dryer, expect the clothes to dry up to three times faster than if you’re using an electrical dryer. Set your dryer according to the type of power supplied.
  • Dry loads consecutively one after the other to save energy since the dryer is already heated. This will reduce the amount of energy used after the first load.

3. Dry your clothing properly

The goal here is to quickly dry your clothing—without damaging it.

  • Use the air dry setting to remove wrinkles and save energy (this setting uses cold air).
  • Lightweight clothing dries quicker than heavier loads such as towels or jeans. I like to dry lightweight clothing for 10-15 minutes and then hang the clothes up to complete the drying process. This cuts my energy usage in half.
  • Always air dry your bras. This will save them from wear and tear (and keep your energy costs down).
3 Tips to Keep Your Dryer Efficient and Keep Your Energy Costs Down