Laundry dryer balls

Do Dryer Balls Work?

Are you tired of using dryer sheets that leave a residue on your clothes and contribute to landfill waste? You might have heard about the alternative – dryer balls.

Dryer balls are typically made from wool or plastic and are designed to bounce around in the dryer, separating clothing items and allowing hot air to circulate more efficiently. This reduces drying time, softens clothes, and even eliminates static cling.

Do Dryer Balls Really Work?

Most dryer balls are made from rubber, wool, or plastic. No matter the material they’re made from, you’re sure to save some money, unlike when you use single-use dryer sheets.

Dryer balls work by absorbing heat from the dryer and moisture from the washed clothes, helping the garments separate faster and a more even flow of warm air. Simply put, dryer balls make laundry faster.

To use them, put some dryer balls in the dryer with your clothes just as you would a dryer sheet. Unlike dryer sheets, if the laundry scent is no longer there, you can easily add a few drops of essential oils (citrus or lavender) to your dryer balls.

They’ll retain the scent longer and transfer it to the dryer clothes through air circulation and heat.

Dryer Balls vs Dryer Sheets: Which is Best?

Undoubtedly, dryer sheets are more common, but dryer balls have many benefits, especially for those with sensitive skin or who want to minimize the impact of their environment.

Dryer sheets contain chemicals and fragrances that the skin can likely absorb. So, it’s recommended to use dryer balls as a natural alternative.

On the contrary, dryer balls are manufactured from organic and natural materials like rubber or wool, whereas sheet dryers are crafted from synthetic polyesters. According to Scientific American, dryer sheets and fabric softeners contain carcinogens like chloroform and limonene.

In addition, dryer balls are more eco-friendly as they last longer and help reduce drying times, saving power and water usage. Whenever a dryer ball completes its lifespan, it decomposes faster than a dryer sheet.

Benefits of Dryer Balls

You may have been asking: ‘Do dryer balls really work’? Sincerely, the benefits of dryer balls are countless.

  • Prevents Wrinkling and Clumping

As dryer balls absorb heat from the dryer, they’re tossed around, helping the clothes separate smoothly to prevent clumping. 

As the clothes clump, it wrinkles and can be very difficult to iron. But, with the dryer balls’ help, air (warm) circulation ensures faster and better clothes separation.

  • Reduces Waste

Unlike dryer sheets that can only be tossed once, wool dryer balls can be tossed multiple times. That makes them more eco-friendly.

Most of all, they do not contain artificial materials or chemicals. Hence, they’re biodegradable and can be easily composted.

  • Shorter Drying Time

Dryer balls are mostly noted for their reliability in reducing drying time. As they roll around in the dryer, they declutter clothes instead of pushing them around in one heavy wet clump.

The separation allows warm air to flow around each of the clothes, drying them faster. The best part is that since dryer balls reduce drying time, your clothing isn’t exposed to heat for long periods. Hence, they’ll remain in good shape and further save you money.

  • Saves Money

Dryer balls can be used repeatedly, helping you save more money than you would have spent on changing dryer sheets.

In addition, they help extend the lifespan of your clothes as they don’t contain harsh chemicals that can damage your clothes in the long run.

  • Softens Clothes

Instead of using fabric softeners to do your laundry, use dryer balls. They don’t contain any artificial materials or have heavy scents and are milder on clothes.

As the dryer balls move around, they help soften the clothes, making them fluffy. The balls work better with small or medium loads. When you overload the dryer, excess friction will reduce the softness of the clothes and create wrinkles.


How to Know When to Replace My Dryer Balls?

Most dryer balls can be used multiple times. If you realize they’re beginning to wear and aren’t working well any longer, gently hand wash them in warm soapy water. Never wash them in the washer, as it could damage the wool. 

If there’s too much pet hair or dirt on the ball, use a fabric softener or lint roller to take it off. If they still shed heavily or become looser, then it’s time to replace your dryer balls.

How Do I Use Wool Dryer Balls?

It’s super easy to use wool dryer balls. All you need to do is fill your dryer with wet clothes and add three dryer balls before turning on the machine. Then, sit back, relax and watch your clothes roll in the dryer! 

Keep a close watch on the cycle, as the drying time may be shorter because of your wool dryer balls. Besides, removing your clothes before they are completely dry is advisable as it helps with wrinkles.

How Long Do Dryer Balls Last?

One of the reasons dryer balls are environmentally friendly is that they can be reused, unlike dryer sheets, which are single-use products.

Dryer balls can be used for up to 1,000 washes, which can be calculated as ten years if you do your laundry weekly. You’d need to buy four boxes for a single dryer ball if you use dryer sheets. Plus, your home will be filled with waste products.

Can I Wash Dryer Balls?

Yes. Washing is the best way to bring your loose dryer ball back to life; just put it in warm soapy water and hand wash them.

Using a washer is not advisable as it could damage the wool completely. However, you can dry the balls on high heat. 

Plastic vs Wool Dryer Balls: Which is Better?

Deciding whether to get plastic or wool dryer balls is based on personal preference. Generally, plastic dryer balls aren’t as eco-friendly as their wool counterparts. 

With plastic dryer balls, you won’t always have to clean the lint trap. However, wool is more durable than plastic and can be used with essential oils.