How to Build a Clothesline

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How to Build a Clothesline

Every time you put your clothes in the dryer, your electric bill shoots up, adding up to your expenses. If you have a clothesline though, this won’t be a problem because it lets you dry your clothes naturally, with the help of the sun and wind. It’s not hard to build, as long as you know the right procedure.

What You’ll Need:

  • Wood or metal post (one or two, depending on the type of clothesline you’re going to make)
  • Posthole digger or shovel
  • Posthole cement
  • Clothesline
  • Clothesline pulley
  • Water
  • Level


  1. Determine what kind of clothesline you’re going to build. If you have a fairly small backyard, consider an umbrella clothesline instead of the usual T-bar clothesline, since it takes up less space and can be removed, if not in use. If you prefer to have more wind movement through your clothes to dry them faster, you should stick to the T-bar, although this would take up a lot of space.
  2. clothesline

  3. Check your backyard, and determine where you’re going to put the clothesline. Make sure you place it away from trees and overhanging wires, so bird, animal droppings, old leaves and tree sap won’t accidentally ruin your clothes.
  4. Contact the local utilities unit before you start digging any hole. You might accidentally hit power, phone, or water lines when you dig.
  5. Once you where you’re going to position the holes, use the posthole digger or shovel to dig. Dig at least three feet down. This will give you good, solid support and help you go through the “frost line”, so the clothesline won’t shift when the ground starts thawing.
  6. Get the wooden or a metal post (or posts) you’re going to use. It should be tall enough for you to reach, and with at least three feet allowance, since you’re going to placed it in a hole. If you’re making the traditional clothesline with the pulley, you’ll need two poles.
  7. Put some posthole cement in the hole, then add water. Read the package instructions and make sure you follow it. Put the post in the hole. Do the same for the other post.
  8. Check the post(s) with the level, making sure they’re straight. If not, brace them in place. Wait for the cement to dry overnight.
  9. Install the clothesline pulleys and the clothesline.

Drying clothes doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. Build a sturdy clothesline, and let the sun and wind take care of that chore.



  1. Berrni said,

    on August 24th, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    I am tired of seeing my clothlesline drooping. This time I am preparing to put a clothesline up with the pulley against the shed wall and the other end on a tree (readily trimmed). I intend to stand 2 long (2 X 4s) against the front and back of the tree (to protect the life of the tree). I will secure the 2X4s with heavy duty tie-downs in three parts and attach the other pulley. I hope this will work for me.