Sunshine Clothesline Releases Tips For Reducing Your Carbon Footprint Through Cold Weather Clothes Drying

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Sunshine Clotheslines across the country are put to use as spring weather replaces the deep cold experienced by much of the U.S. this winter, but many people save money and resources by using their Sunshine Clotheslines year round. Here’s how you can too.

As we enter the month of April, warmer spring weather is replacing the bitter cold of the Polar Vortex and Sunshine Clothesline owners are putting their outdoor clothes driers to back to use. For many intrepid souls however, the outdoor clothes drying season never ends. Through the harshest of winters, people still enjoy using renewable energy from the wind and sun via outdoor clothes drying with the Sunshine Clothesline. Hardy folks from colder climates have long known about the phenomenon of freeze drying clothes. “They come off the line stiff, at first you think they are wet and frozen. It’s surprising when you go inside and the clothes warm up, they have little to no moisture left. If the clothes are still a little damp I toss them in the dryer for a few minutes, or I hang them on our indoor dryer,” says Jesse Knudson, a Midwestern Sunshine Clothesline owner.

Freeze drying works in part because of a phenomenon known as sublimation, the process by which water converts directly from a solid to a gas, skipping the liquid phase. Julie Koeberle, Snowpack Hydrologist, has long been fascinated with the dynamics of winter water. She sees a link between snowpack conditions and winter clothes drying. “Drying clothes in freezing winter conditions has many similarities with snowpack water loss. In both cases water leaves the medium in which it resides and enters the atmosphere through evaporation and sublimation. Although sublimation is typically a slower process than evaporation, the end result is the same - moisture is removed. The other link between outdoor clothes dryers like the Sunshine Clothesline and winter weather is the Sunshine Clothesline’s ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions when used as an alternative to natural gas or electric clothes dryers. Reducing carbon emissions from household appliances can help mitigate the impacts of climate change and keep wintertime snowpack at healthy levels. Clotheslines are one of the simplest ways that home owners can reduce their carbon footprint and protect our climate”

Fortunately for those who are not inclined to spend time in freezing temperatures, off-season clothesline use can be effective in a variety of conditions. As with summertime clothesline use, picking the right day is important. Look for low humidity, light wind conditions to provide the best drying opportunities. Even slightly overcast or partly cloudy days can dry clothes provided the humidity is not too high. Successful off-season use of the Sunshine Clothesline often includes flexible scheduling to take advantage of good drying conditions and allowing more time for clothes to dry. Many off-season outdoor clothesline users forgo the notion that they are attempting to dry their clothes fully outdoors. Knudson has a simple drying philosophy “I don’t think of it as all or nothing. If I only need to run my dryer for half as long as usual because I’ve partially dried my clothes outdoors, my utility bills go down and my laundry smells outdoor fresh. My family comes out ahead and the planet comes out ahead.”

The Sunshine Clothesline, a collapsible umbrella style outdoor clothes dryer, was invented in Cedar Falls, Iowa in 1913 and has long been a fixture of yards throughout Iowa and across the upper Midwest. The Sunshine Clothesline is still made in a small manufacturing facility located a mere 20 miles from the site where the product was invented. In recent years, internet sales have expanded the range of the Sunshine Clothesline as online customers from around the continental U.S. discover this inexpensive and convenient way to harness renewable energy from the wind and sun and get a fresher clean for their laundry.
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Keith Wilson

Keith Wilson
Sunshine Clothesline
since: 08/2013
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