How to Choose The Best Wall Mounted Washing Line
A lack of space for drying clothes is a common problem.
If you don’t want to take up room outside with a large washing line, but want a solution that is easier than using a collapsible airer, a wall mounted washing line can provide a simple solution.
These retractable lines save space, by folding up against the wall when not in use, and are simple to pull out and use when required.
They can also be used both inside and out.
If you think a wall mounted line sounds like a good idea, have a read of the following information to make sure you get one that will work well in the space you have available:
How Much Washing Can it Hold?
The amount of drying space is usually measured in metres, and on top of this most washing lines will also have a weight capacity. If you are drying a lot of heavier items such as wet towels or jeans, you’ll need to pay more attention to the weight capacity.
All the washing lines featured on this page have around 24 – 26 m of drying space. Around 24 metres of drying space is relatively standard for wall mounted lines and is enough to hold one large load of washing, or two smaller loads.
Wall mounted washing lines are unlikely to have as much drying space as rotary lines, and are therefore better suited to smaller families.
These washing lines can differ in size between models, even if they have the same amount of line in metres. Whilst getting the largest option may seem like a good idea for hanging out the most washing, it also depends what size space you’re working with.
Larger wall mounted lines can measure approximately 120 cm per side. It will be easier to hang out sheets on these lines, as they will fit better. However, the line will protrude out further than a smaller line with sides that measure 100 cm.
If you don’t have a lot of room, you need to consider how much space the extended line will take up, as well as the type of washing you want to hang out. Often a compromise can be made by hanging larger items, like sheets and towels, elsewhere – on an airer or over banisters.
Fixing a Wall Mounted Line to a Wall
Usually, fixing a retractable wall mounted line to a wall outside with involve drilling through brick.
Make sure that you’re comfortable and safe with using the tools required to do this, and always get a professional to help if not.
Whenever drilling through walls, you must also make sure that you’re not in danger of drilling through any pipes, electrics, or important infrastructure as well.
To fix a wall mounted line to the wall, you first need to make sure that there is enough space for the line. When it is open, you don’t want it to extend so far that it interferes with anything on the wall, or in front of the wall. Before purchasing a wall mounted line, take note of its size dimensions and measure them out on the wall to check that there’s enough space.
Here’s a general guide for fitting a wall mounted line, but check the manufacturer’s instructions with the model you buy as they may differ:
- Take the wall bracket and mark on the wall with a pencil where you want it to go. Use a spirit level to make sure the position is straight. In terms of height, you can position the washing line wherever you want depending on how tall you are and how easy it will be to reach. Positioning the lower part of the bracket at approximately 120-150 cm should keep washing off the ground. A good rule of thumb is that the top of the line should be approx. 10 cm above the primary user’s head.
- Make sure to mark the mounting holes of the bracket with a pencil.
- Using a masonry drill and 8 mm drill bit, drill pilot holes where the mounting holes are marked out. Wear protective gear when drilling into bricks including goggles, a face mask, and gloves.
- Fix brackets to the wall with screw bolts. Use an impact driver to push the bolts into the pilot holes.
- Using the provided screws and fittings, fit the frame of the washing line to the bracket.
Other Styles of Wall Mounted Line
As mentioned in the introduction, there are a few different types of wall mounted line.
The three main styles are:
- Retractable lines (as featured on this page)
- Single-level airers that fold flat against the wall
- Single-level airers that remain permanently extended (and can’t fold flat)
Naturally, there are pros and cons to each style.
Airers that retract, collapse, or fold up will naturally save space. Anything that doesn’t fold up may get in the way when not in use, especially if installed in a narrower alley alongside the house.
However, due to their collapsible nature, foldable lines are often made from lightweight aluminium. This is because lighter materials put less strain on the overall frame. Aluminium is rust-resistant, which is good news for lines that are kept outside, but it can still corrode and isn’t as strong as steel.
Lines that don’t need to collapse down are more likely to be made from steel. Also, because static lines don’t have any moving parts, they are generally stronger than foldable lines and can take more weight. Stainless steel shouldn’t rust easily, but anything made from standard steel will be prone to rust.
Wall Mounted Washing Line FAQs
Where should I put my washing line?
Wall mounted washing lines should be installed on a strong wall and, if outside, they should ideally be in a spot that sees a lot of sun. Try to avoid very exposed areas. Remember that the screws you need will vary depending on the type of wall you are installing it on.
You should also ensure you have enough space to hang your washing. Not only should you have ample space to pull the washing line outwards, there should be space for you to stand to hang your clothes. Try to avoid installing it too close to your garden furniture or other obstacles that you’ll need to navigate if you are taking your washing down in a hurry!
You should also think about distance from the washing machine. No one wants to carry load after load of heavy wet clothing to a washing line that’s too far away.
What height should a washing line be?
Washing lines that are too low can be intrusive, while those that are too high are very difficult to use. The general rule of thumb is that the washing line should be installed up to 10 cm higher than the primary user’s head.