While dryer sheets expertly reduce static, the chemical additives that make them so effective are a considerable downside. What can I use instead of dryer sheets to naturally reduce static? Wool dryer balls are a reusable, natural alternative that eliminates static cling. Use these DIY tips to make a homemade dryer sheet alternative that leaves your laundry chemical and static-free.
How to Make a Homemade Dryer Sheet Alternative
Though dryer sheets may not be the most natural static eliminator, they’re certainly easy to use. Fortunately, these simple ideas for a homemade dryer sheet alternative are just as easy to implement. As an added bonus, most can even be reused, reducing waste and saving money.
Wool Dryer Balls
Drying without dryer sheets is easy when you substitute them for wool dryer balls. These bouncy balls are made of wool yarn and help reduce static in two ways. First, their bounciness helps keep laundry separated during tumbling, reducing drying times. A shorter drying time and less contact with each other means clothes have less opportunity to develop static cling. Secondly, the wool material helps absorb some of the moisture in the dryer, further shortening drying times.
Available online and in most grocery stores, wool dryer balls are just as easy to use as a dryer sheet. Simply toss 3-4 in the dryer with your wet laundry and start a drying cycle. As an added bonus, wool dryer balls are reusable for at least one year, reducing cost and waste.
Aluminum Foil Dryer Sheet Alternative
Did you know you could use aluminum foil instead of dryer sheets to reduce static? Simply take 2-3 sheets of foil and crumble them together until they’re about the size of a baseball. Like wool dryer balls, this homemade dryer sheet alternative keeps laundry separate during tumbling, reducing static through less contact and shorter drying times. Plus, their aluminum material also reduces the electrical charge between each item, further eliminating static cling.
While it’s recommended to use 2-3 balls per dryer load, foil balls are reusable for multiple loads. And since most households have at least one roll of aluminum foil, they cost virtually nothing to make.
DIY Vinegar Dryer Sheets
Vinegar has a variety of household uses, including as a natural static reducer and fabric softener. Harness these powers as a reusable dryer sheet by dampening a washcloth with a few sprinkles of white or apple cider vinegar. Toss the washcloth in the dryer with your wet laundry and they’ll emerge dry and static-free.
How does this homemade dryer sheet alternative work? Vinegar naturally loosens fabric fibers, making them less stiff. When clothes are softer and more flexible, they create less friction and are less likely to cling together. As for that vinegar smell, don’t give it a second thought; the odor quickly dissipates in the dryer’s heat.
Ice Cubes as a Dryer Sheet Alternative
A homemade dryer sheet replacement doesn’t get any easier than using ice cubes. How does adding ice to wet clothes reduce static cling? When 1-2 ice cubes are exposed to the heat of a drying cycle, they quickly melt into water, which evaporates into steam. This steam creates a moist, humid environment that makes static impossible. Plus, it also reduces wrinkles without the need for an iron.
For best results, use these tips when trying ice cubes as a dryer sheet alternative:
- Keep the load small: Drying only 3-4 items at a time ensures that each is sufficiently exposed to steam.
- Stick to light fabrics: Denim, wool or other heavy materials are too thick to significantly benefit.
- Use only a few cubes and high heat: Too many cubes take too long to evaporate, leaving clothes wet and elongating drying times. Use only 1-2 per load and select the highest heat setting for better evaporation. Dryer won’t start on command? After adding laundry and ice cubes, make sure the door is securely closed and its latch is engaged.
Whether it’s a homemade dryer sheet alternative or an expert dryer repair, our technicians have the answers you need. Call Capital City Appliance Service for all your laundry appliance concerns!