Have you ever wondered what is the lowest temperature that clothes would dry outside? Sometimes, when you do your laundry, the sun will be blazing hot, drying even the heaviest of your clothes within just a few minutes. And on other cases, it will be a cloudy, extremely cold day, such that when you hang clothes outside you won’t be able to tell when these will dry.

However, since laundry is an inescapable task, you need to be ready for all types of weathers, including the cold months when clothes take the longest to dry. And while most people opt to dry their clothes indoors during the cold seasons, it is always recommended that you let your clothes air-dry outside, unless it becomes otherwise impossible.

clothes outside

Still, when it comes to drying clothes outside in the cold months, the last thing you want is to hang your clothes outside and have snow and ice accumulate over them. This raises the question: What is the minimum temperatures that you can dry clothes outside? Read along this article to find out!


What is the Lowest Temperature That Clothes Would Dry Outside?


Basically, there is no minimum temperature that is required to dry clothes outside. As long as the air outside remains dry enough, your clothes will dry eventually, even in extremely cold, freezing temperatures. And even if your clothes freeze on the clothesline, you can rest assured that the frozen water will eventually evaporate, if the air is dry.

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The process by which frozen water evaporates is known as sublimation (the process where water converts from its ice-state into a gas state without passing through the liquid state).

Therefore, as long as there is no wetness or high humidity outside, you can always air-dry your clothes outside, regardless of how low the temperatures get. However, when temperatures fall low and it begins raining, it is recommended that you use a tumbler dryer to dry your clothes. Alternatively, you can dry the clothes indoors using an indoor clothes airer if you wish to save on energy.

When you choose to dry clothes indoors, keep in mind, though, that drying clothes indoors can cause humidity levels in the house to increase, posing serious health issues to homeowners. The best way to go about this would be to leave the windows open for a considerable amount of time; the open windows let out moisture, keeping the humidity levels inside the house in check.


Can Clothes Still Dry if They Freeze?

Yes, clothes can still dry even if they freeze on the clothesline. As long as the air outside is dry and there is some wind, moisture from the clothes will be absorbed into the air. And even though it might take longer than usual for the clothes to dry, you can trust that they will eventually dry.

Therefore, when you hang your clothes outside and find that they have been frozen stiff, do not worry. Just leave them outside, after a while, the ice should start sublimating until it turns into vapor, leaving the clothes dry. Depending on the material and fabric of the cloth, it may either feel completely dry after sublimation, or be slightly damp with a little moisture. If the cloth is still damp, you can dry it complete in the dryer or on an indoor clothes airer.


Tips for Drying Clothes Outside When It’s Cold

During the cold days, when temperatures fall below zero, it may take longer to dry clothes outside. Fortunately, there are practical steps you can take to speed up the drying process of the clothes. Consider these three tips for drying clothes outside when it’s cold:

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1. Expose a Wide Surface Area

When you hang clothes on the clothesline, ensure that you expose a wide surface area to the air. For example, rather than fold towels and bedsheets in half, open their zippers and hang them by their edge. Also, consider using rotary washing lines instead of the regular clothesline. Exposing a wide surface area of the clothes will help to dry them much faster.


2. Shelter the Hanging Lines

Low temperatures are usually accompanied by rain, which delays the drying of clothes. Therefore, if there is a high chance that it will rain, hang your clothes under a shelter. You can construct a shelter of corrugated metal sheets, or even create a simple shelter using a garden umbrella. A good shelter will not only keep the rain out but also allow enough air flow to the clothes, speeding up their drying process.


3. Use a Drying Rack


dryer rack

If it too cold outside and the humidity levels are high, it would be best to dry clothes indoors. You can use a clothes airer or a drying rack to dry the clothes. The good thing about using a drying rack is that it can be moved easily into the indoors when it starts raining.



Now that you know What is the Lowest Temperature That Clothes Would Dry Outside, you can go ahead to dry them outside even when temperatures fall too low. As long as the air remains dry, and you practice a little patience, you can rest assured that your clothes will dry eventually, even if they freeze into funny shapes at some point!

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