Your clothes are not only going to get dirtier faster when living off-grid, but you will quickly find out how much more difficult it is to get them clean again, and how drying them can be even harder. Washing an average sized load of clothes by hand will take you close to an hour, then there is hanging them. And of course, while you are occupied with your laundry, you aren’t taking care of any of your other projects that all need your attention. Laundry is definitely a big chore without a machine! These are a few simple and practical ways to cut down on the time and energy you spend doing laundry while living off-grid.
Clothes that you wear to sleep in, then go garden in, will be too dirty to sleep in again on a single use. But you can sleep in the same clothes for a week (your standards may need to adjust a little from having a washer and dryer) if all you do is sleep in them. Designating clothes for sleeping, working in, lounging after work and re-entering civilization in will keep these clothes clean enough for their individual purposes longer, and make your laundry loads smaller.
Air ‘em out
Not everything is going to need to be washed with soap and dried on a regular basis. Items such as sheets and towels can go longer between washes if you take the time to hang them out in the sun on a nice day. Depending on your situation, this could make a huge difference in conserving time and resources since you will not need to use water that might need to be hauled. The sun naturally kills bacteria, so an hour or so in the hot noon sun can make all the difference.
Especially during bad weather, it can save you time and resources to set up an indoor clothesline near a fireplace or wood burning stove. You can’t always count on the sun to do your work for you, and if you are already burning wood, then you might as well get the most out of it.
Off-grid living will come with its difficulties, but laundry doesn’t have to be one of them if you have a plan.
If you liked this, you might also enjoy…