Drying Clothes in an Energy Efficient Home

You are creating an energy efficient home and of course you want clean, dry clothes but a big gaping hole in your wall (called a dryer vent) doesn’t fit into your airtight plan. What to do?

  1. Hang clothes outside or inside to dry.
  2. Install your dryer with a vent outside of your building envelope (garage, basement).
  3. Install an All-in-One washer/dryer that requires no vent!

Although we do hang clothes to dry, we love our washing machine that also dries our clothes! How many times, with a standard washer and dryer, have I forgotten to move wet clothes into the dryer only to have to wash them again? Too many!

Also, after spending additional money to make sure our new, nearly-net-zero home’s building envelope was well sealed–and not wanting to go out to our detached garage to do laundry or have clothes hanging all over our our house in the winter–a non-vented all-in-one washer-dryer was the best solution. Living in Colorado, we also have down jackets and down comforters and those need “beaten” in a dryer cycle with wool dryer balls to fluff up after washing.

Bonus: These units only require a standard 120v outlet and they save space but still have full capacity!

In 2017 we purchased an all-in-one LG with 4.5 cubic feet capacity that works well for our family and can wash and dry our queen size comforter.

Although it looks like LG has updated their All-In-One Washer Dryer with 4.5 cu ft capacity, you can purchase the one we have here.

1. Get the warranty so that if/when the lint builds up in the machine (because you got a dog that sheds a lot) and therefore prevents it from drying like it should, the repair guy can come out for free and show you how to clear it.

2. Clear the water/lint trap at the bottom once a month. It’s easy, or so my husband says.

3. Don’t over stuff the drum. It will wash fine but will take a REALLY long time to dry.

4. If you want your clothes totally dry, set it for “more” dry. “Normal” dry will leave clothes damp.

5. Use a wet cloth/rag to wipe the lint out of the door seal.

6. Install a 240v outlet somewhere in your house, besides the garage for electric vehicle charging. It was a real hassle to have our wood floors sanded because the sanding machine required a 240v outlet (which a standard dryer requires) and we had none in our new home.

7. Don’t let all your laundry pile up and expect to get it all done in one day. Each cycle will take a lot longer to complete due to the condensing dryer. If you have a large family, you might consider buying two units.

8. We love being able to wash and dry clothes while we are sleeping! Need those jeans tomorrow? Ran out of underwear?! No problem! However, if you have this unit in your bedroom, there is no way to turn off the the 5 second song designed to alert us that the cycle is complete.

9. If you live in a dry climate, like Colorado, hanging clothes outside to dry in the summer will take a fraction of the time to dry and keep your home cooler. Sometimes I do this but the convenience of the all-in-one usually wins.

10. The LG that we have can do a “dry” only cycle (not every all-in-one machines can)
1st set the dial to “drain + spin.”
2nd select your your dry level.
3rd select “no spin.”

11. If you need to open the door before the drying cycle has completed it will take several minutes before it allows you to open the door. This is a safety feature because drying creates very hot steam.

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