- Check the labels on the clothes.
Don’t put clothes that say ‘Do not tumble dry’ in a dryer. Don’t put stretchy fabrics (lycra exercise clothes, swimmers) or lingerie in a dryer.
- Check if clothes are made of natural fibres.
Natural fibres – cotton, linen, wool and silk – will shrink when heated in a dryer, in hot water or by the sun.
- Sort the clothes.
Put similar weight clothes in the same load so each item takes about the same time to dry eg don’t mix light boxer shorts with heavy jackets.
Using the dryer
- Pull out the lint filter (usually in the doorway of the dryer) and remove lint before every load.
Lint can catch fire.
- Fill the dryer ½ – ¾ full, loosely packed.
If there are too few or too many clothes, they won’t tumble properly or dry quickly.
- Choose the right setting for the type of fabric.
Different fabrics require different settings. Use high heat for towels and clothes that are a bit too big (in case they shrink), medium heat for synthetic materials such as polyester and low heat for delicate clothes such as undies.
- Use the minimum amount of heat necessary to dry the clothes
Some dryers have hot, warm and airing (no heat) settings.
- Use the minimum amount of time necessary to dry the clothes
Some dryers sense when the load is dry and turn themselves off. For other dryers, you select the time. Try 30 mins, open the dryer door and check whether the clothes are dry. If they are still damp, turn on again.
- Check if there is an anti-wrinkle setting
If there is, turn it on to reduce wrinkles/creases in the clothes.
- Take the clothes out as soon as the load is finished and lay them flat on top of each other or fold them immediately
If they are left in the dryer, they will get very wrinkly.