Can a Dry Towel in Wet Laundry Reduce Drying Times?
Sasha Tucakov
St George's School
Floor Location : J 209 E

There is a well known tip that if you add a dry towel in with your wet load of laundry that it will dry faster and use less energy. When I searched this up on Google, BC Hydro and their Powersmart campaign said that it can significantly reduce drying times saving you up to $26 a year. Another is Lifehacker.com and they say that this tip is inaccurate and does not actually help. They suggest that you need to remove it about halfway through the drying cycle and hang dry it, therefor removing moisture from the dryer. I wanted to know who was right. The way I was measuring how much energy the dryer was using was with an energy sensor that attaches to the wires in the control panel going to the dryer and displays the exact amount of energy the dryer is using. I then did tests with three load configurations; Without towel, with cotton towel, and with fleece towel. I did these 3 times each on lower and higher heat for a total of 18 experiments. My data showed that the towel in fact didn't help reduce energy consumption on higher heat. However, on lower heat settings the towel does help by about 5% saving about 0.18 kWh. As anything life there is no such thing as a free sandwich, and in this case, because its on lower heat settings it takes about 10% longer to dry to save that 5% energy.