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8 Creative Ways to Dry Things

Waiting for things to dry can feel like an eternity. Thankfully, there are shortcuts.

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adding a dry towel to a dryer to speed up drying timefamily handyman

Quick Drying Laundry Hack

Waiting for clothes to dry can be annoying, especially if you’re in a hurry. I throw in a dry towel with the rest of my wet laundry to speed up the process and get on with my day.

using a clothes hanger to hand paint brushes for dryingfamily handyman

Quick Drying Hanger

Here’s a handy way to dry and store paint brushes. Using a hand saw, cut a slanted slice out of the handle from the hole toward the bristles. After cleaning, hook the brush over a coat hanger and hang it from a ceiling joist. — Paul E. Therrien.

diy drying rack in a basementfamily handyman

Instant Drying Rack

Does your family have a lot of clothes that can’t go in the dryer? Even those collapsible drying racks with several bars for draping wet clothes still aren’t enough for big laundry days.

To fix your air-drying space shortage:

  1. Grab a 1×2 board from your scrap stash in the garage.
  2. Trim it to fit across a few joists overhead in your basement laundry room.
  3. Tack it in place with a heavy-duty nail in each joist.
  4. Use hangers to air-dry several more pieces of clothing. Brilliant!

laundry hanging to dry on a clothes line in a backyardCatherine Falls Commercial/Getty Images

Embrace Air Drying

Save some money and use fresh air to your advantage when drying laundry. Plus, your clothing will smell fresh and clean without dryer sheets. In the winter you can hang a drying rack inside, which also adds moisture to the dry indoor air. Make an instant drying rack to hang laundry inside.

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using a salad spinner to remove excess water for faster dryingfamily handyman

Use a Salad Spinner

If you have some articles of clothing that shouldn’t go in the dryer, remove excess water with salad spinner. Then hang them on a rack to dry.

pvc glove drying rack placed over furnace ventfamily handyman

PVC Drying Rack

This PVC mitten/glove dryer utilizes the heat from the floor vent. Make the racks with a six-inch piece of PVC, a wire hanger, some electrical tape and glue.

Photo: Courtesy of Rev Rider

diy glove and hat drying line on the back of a doorfamily handyman

Behind the Door Storage: Closet Glove Rack

If you don’t have radiators, finding a good spot to dry wet hats and mittens can be tough. Tossing them into a plastic bin gets them out of the way, but they never dry and it’s no fun putting on damp mittens in the morning.

This simple back-of-the-door glove and cap rack allows wet things to dry and keeps easily misplaced items organized. Just string clothespins on aluminum wire (it won’t rust) and stretch it between screw eyes on the back of a closet door. This also works great out in the garage for drying garden and work gloves.

using a tomato cage to dry paint brushesfamily handyman

Tomato Cage Drying Rack

An inverted tomato cage makes a great drying rack for rollers, brushes, pads, rags and whatever is wet after painting cleanup. The stuff dries quickly outdoors, and there’s room for everything! — Tom Anderson.

Alex Shoemaker
Alex is an avid DIYer but had little experience before purchasing his first home in 2019. A Family Handyman subscription was one of his first purchases after becoming a homeowner, and he's been hooked ever since. When he’s not working, he can be found fixing up his 1940s Florida home or relaxing on the beach with his family.