To complete my two-part series on the cheapest way to clean clothes we’ll again look at Michael Bluejay’s recommendations.
It’s clear that gas prices are a few cents cheaper than electric (on average) but the cost of putting in a pipe and switching over to natural gas is so expensive, you probably wouldn’t see savings for about 20 years. That being said, if using gas is an option, as I've stated, gas is generally cheaper and for this purpose it might be good to switch.
That being said there are if we continue to use our 11 cents per kWh (again in with PGE it’s about 9 cents), dryers for the most part use about 3.3 kWh bringing us to about 36 cents for a dry time of 45 minutes. One doesn’t see the true cost until it’s added up throughout the year. At the average of eight loads a week the yearly costs comes out to around 150 bucks. If we add in our previous figure for washing clothes our number comes to $400 a year just for cleaning clothes. Not buying, not mending, not ironing, not dry cleaning, just a standard wash and dry.
In order to keep the drying costs down there are a few ideas that we can incorporate (either fully or even just partially). First is the purchase of a spin dryer. This machine spins clothes extremely fast to “suck” out the remaining water before the clothes are put into your regular dryer. They run about $130 but save about $97 and would pay for themselves in less than a year and a half.
Next is line drying. Line drying used to be the only way to dry clothes and again I’ll reference foreign countries where to this day clothes hanging from lines that span across buildings adds to the character of the place. Line drying is free and although it may take a little longer in wetter climates can still be accomplished with relative ease. Also, Michael notes that you don’t have to dry the clothes all the way if you plan on ironing them. Electricity costs for the iron go up a little, but not much.
I’ll conclude by saying that even in your home there are simple ways to change energy dependency. This is just one example and there are a host of others that can drastically reduce your energy bills and help you live a more green existence.
Read more about this and other cost cutting techniques a michaelbluejay.com