Sunday, September 25, 2011

THE PAST AND THE PRESENT

My radiators are covered with items of clothing at various stages of drying. It's not that I am stingy about using the the tumble-dryer and using fuel; it is that my consciousness has been assaulted with being economic with the earth's resources. I work much like the local farmers do, observing weather patterns, waiting to quickly take and use any windows of opportunity. In my case, I wait for half decent weather so I can peg out the washing to dry in what nature can provide for the purpose. As the season changes the opportunities to dry the washing outside will contract. 

I am almost wistful for bygone days when rooms in houses were large enough to sustain a wooden dryer fixed with a pulley, which rose to the ceiling. We had one, when I was young, and it settled in a high area in line with the rising heat from the coal range, mostly used for heating. Those were the days of city smog. I would not wish that back. With the thought in mind, I have been eying up any spaces that might accommodate a pulley dryer/airer. The obvious one would be our utility area, but that is far too narrow.

Damp is another issue to think about. These days, with smaller room sizes and the encouragement to insulate houses well, ventilation is more restricted. On the other hand if a house is heated with dry heat, a little moisture might balance things off a bit. The correct balances could be difficult to achieve.

Increasing heating costs focus the mind and the purse. Where I live, there are very limited periods when the heating is completely off during the year. The thinking cap will have to go on again. Meantime, the airers over the radiators and the radiators themselves will have to do their best to support the ecological argument on the basis that every little helps it, and also, every little helps to support the domestic economy drive.

4 comments:

adamantixx said...

i don't think many tumble driers will be in use this winter, many people will have a straight choice: heat or eat.

what you need is some Heath Robinson type invention...perhaps an indoors windmill swishing all the clothes around until dry, powered by an energetic pet on a treadwheel.

ZACL said...

I am sure we'll be hearing a lot of heart wrenching stories about heat or eat this winter. I fear you are so right there, Ax.

I don't have the easement of a three or four months period when the heating can be completely turned off, like I used to when living in the warmer South East of England.

I think I might chat about the idea of a pulley rack to the resident Heath-Robinson; I'd have to keep a careful eye on any attempted inventions.

Did you have a super hamster or two in mind for the treadmill?

Vincent said...

Ah, we are on my favourite topic again! Why don't you look into a Leifheit Indoor Airer? It's an update on the old pulley arrangement. Ours cost about £30 three years ago, ordered via the Net. I didn't buy it from this site but try this link to see a range. Ours has 5 lines and is very neat. You can retract it out of sight when not in use. This house is tiny but we can hang as much washing indoors as out on three lines in the backyard - across my little study/guest bedroom.

ZACL said...

I know the type of dryer you mention Vincent. I don't think it would safely take the weight of some of my bedding or my towels. The smaller and lighter items would be okay. However, as you kindly suggest, I will look at the link you offer.