I remember when my mum got a gas tumble dryer. She cried. No longer did she have to hang clothes on the sagging clothesline outside. We felt like we had moved into the 20th century with that and a color television. If we had known then what we know now, we would have kept the clothesline for some situations. Little did we know that the dryer could actually affect our health!
First of all, we didn’t count on the lint. Apparently, drying clothes in the dryer produces a great deal of lint. This created a problem for my sister, who had asthma. So, the housekeeping had to increase in order to keep lint cleared out from inside and behind the dryer. It was amazing how much lint could accumulate on the wall behind the dryer!
Not only that, we found out that the lint was actually a fire hazard! In our case, the heating element in an electric dryer went out. We had it replaced, and the repairman called us in to witness the huge amount of dryer lint that had accumulated around the heating element. He told us that we were lucky it hadn’t caught on fire. Evidently, dryer lint is highly flammable!
His recommendation to us was to use a clothes rack for some items, and to even install a clothesline for some of the larger, heavy items that could be too heavy for the dryer. So, we were back to the clothesline!
Another feature we did not anticipate was the increased humidity brought into the house when we used a tumble dryer. As the dryer evaporated the water from the clothes, that moisture had to go somewhere! Sure enough, we started having problems with mold and mildew in the laundry room. Now, besides my sister’s asthma being exacerbated, other family members started having allergies. It actually resulted in us having to call in contractors to replace drywall in the laundry room. They took out the gypboard and installed concrete board that was more moisture-proof.
Another problem created by the humidity was closets in the laundry room. That was where we kept our linens, and they started smelling like urine. It was because of the increased humidity in the room. Apparently, when you live in an area that gets a lot of rain, the dryer will add to ambient humidity and create mildew problems.
The 21st Century
Now, we are in the 21st Century, and we have advanced to clothesmaid clothes racks. Sure, we still use our tumble dryer, but luckily the styling of clothes racks is much more sophisticated. The woods and finishes keep the racks strong and splinter-free, and they are even a decorative addition to the laundry room. They can fold down from the wall, fold up into the corner, or be suspended from the ceiling. And, bonus, they have cut down on our utility bills!
You may want to consider using clothes racks in your laundry room. It can improve your health, and save money.