Picking Dryer Settings: Just Hot Enough

The washer has just finished, the clothes are damp and ready for the dryer. What settings do you use? Toss them in and put it on high? Maybe place them in gently and dry on low heat for an hour? It can be confusing choosing the proper dryer settings. Here are some options that hopefully will be helpful and keep you from turning your favorite sweater into toddler clothes. 

Most dryer settings have a lot of options to choose from. We will focus on the most commonly available ones as well as some that would be great to have.

1. Air Fluff 

This cycle is great. It allows you to run clothes in the dryer with no heat. You can toss your dry-clean-only clothes in on this cycle to freshen them up with a dryer sheet and remove any lint and animal hair. Air fluff is also a good energy saver since it doesn’t require heat.

2. Dryer Settings for Steam Cycles

Steam cycles are amazing. They basically allow you to steam your clothes right in the dryer. There are several options within the steam cycle to choose from. You can sanitize, reduce wrinkles, or just a basic refresh for clothing that has been sitting in the dryer for a while.

3. Permanent Press

Perm press will run at medium heat and is perfect for most of your loads. Colored clothing generally needs to be dried at a cooler setting than things like towels and whites. Using perm press will make sure to not shrink most of your clothes, but you still need to read your labels to make sure you are following the designer’s 


4. Active wear Dryer Settings

Activewear is actually much more sophisticated than you’d think. It has been created to be moisture-wicking, waterproof, and durable, all while being comfortable and stylish. The active wear setting on your dryer is made specifically for these types of clothes. It is formulated to maintain the fabric and not strip away the waterproofing. 

cat in a dryer

Never let your pets in the dryer. The more you know….

5. Jeans

Jeans are a conundrum. Should you even put them in the dryer? They tend to shrink when dried with high heat, though a jeans cycle will generally adjust temperatures as it dries, attempting to avoid any shrinkage that may occur. Jeans may still fare better if line dried.

dryer settings for towels

These settings will make most of your drying decisions pretty easy. They will do most of the guesswork for you and keep you from making too many additions to your toddler’s growing wardrobe. Hope this helps you conquer the dryer in the future.