. . .

The Differences Between Drying Modes


Selecting the correct drying mode is crucial to improve energy efficiency, reduce energy bills, improve the longevity of your clothes, and ensure you get the best results from your dryer. However, the trick is to realize whether your clothes are not drying properly due to selecting an improper drying cycle or whether your old dryer is up for a replacement. If you suspect a faulty dryer, it’s best to search “dryer repair near me” online and hire a dryer repair technician to fix the issue.

However, if your dryer is new and it’s working perfectly fine, you can learn to use the correct drying modes for different types of fabric to get the best results. Listed below are the differences between drying modes and tips to select the correct drying mode for different types of clothes:

The Difference

  1. Gentle or delicate cycle – This drying mode is suitable for drying delicate, loosely woven, thin, or lacy fabrics, typically made of silk or rayon with embroidery, and embellishment made from sequins and light beading. Sports jerseys or iron-on decals and high-performance fabrics should also be dried using the gentle or delicate dryer cycle since such fabrics can fade, fray, and stick together when subjected to high temperatures.
  2. Timed dry, automatic, and regular cycle – The regular cycle will dry fabrics using the highest heat setting whether you set it to automatic dry or time dry. And, although the heat might not be sufficient to shrink your clothes unlike the hot water in a washer, it could be enough to melt decorations, set wrinkles, and stains. Thus, this drying mode is appropriate for towels, jeans, sweats, sheets, and other such fabrics that are strong and not that costly.

You should note that it is important to keep the moisture sensor of your dryer clean to keep it in good working condition. This is because, with regular use of dryer sheets, the moisture sensor can become coated with residue that can prevent the sensor from working properly which can cause your clothes to over-dry and get damaged.

  1. Air fluff or air-dry cycle – The air fluff or air-dry cycle should be utilized to ‘fluff up your fabrics such as fluffing pillows, comforters, and down-filled items such as coats. The air-dry cycle can also be used to remove lint, dust, pet hair from them easily and freshen dry-clean-only or smelly clothes that have been stored for a while.

This drying mode doesn’t use any heat and instead, pulls in fresh room temperature air and tosses your clothes while the drum turns and draws the fabric towards the dryer filter screen to achieve its goal. For the best results, we recommend you add in a few wool dryer balls since they provide a beating action. You can also throw in a damp cloth with scented essential oil or a dryer sheet to help tumble out wrinkles and improve the freshness.

  1. Steam Cycle – The steam cycle is a special drying mode available in only modern dryers. It’s best suitable for refreshing clothes, and odor and wrinkle removal. Basically, dryers that support the steam cycle have the technology to create steam inside the drum independent of the traditional drying cycle. As such, you can set the steam cycle at the end of the drying cycle which is recommended since the steam cycle does not help in the drying process. Plus, it also helps to prevent wrinkles if you have the habit of keeping your clothes at the end of the drying cycle.
  2. Wrinkle-resistant cycle or permanent-press mode – Usually, manufacturers recommend the permanent-press cycle for drying polyester or synthetic fabric. However, you can use this mode for drying a wide variety of fabrics such as natural fiber washable garments, lightweight cotton, ramie, and linen as well since it only uses a medium level of heat which helps to prevent wrinkles.

In fact, the wrinkle-resistant cycle can be used to dry dresses, shirts, jackets, blouses, outerwear, non-cotton socks, and even slacks. The best part is that this cycle includes a cool-down period of 10 minutes in most modern dryers which use room temperature air to relax wrinkles and reduce the need for ironing.

Here are the dryer settings you can follow for drying different types of fabrics.

  1. High heat – Heavy cotton items such as towels and 100 percent jeans should be dried using the high heat cycle since these fabrics are heavier and take much longer to dry. However, it is recommended that you keep an eye on your clothes while using the high heat cycle to prevent them from over drying and shrinking. We recommend you pull them out a little before the drying cycle ends and air dry them further.
  2. Medium heat – Basic everyday items such as T-shirts and polyester blends should be dried using the medium heat setting or the permanent-press mode since these dry quickly. Using the high heat setting for drying such fabric can cause the fabric to get rippled and get damaged.
  3. Low heat – Activewear and stretchy fabric items such as yoga pants require special care for washing and drying. Such fabric should be dried using hot water or using the low heat setting of the dryer. Since these fabrics deteriorate under prolonged heat exposure, you can also allow them to dry flat to avoid damaging them accidentally.
  4. Dry flat – Delicate and knit items such as sweaters, delicate stretchable, and intimates should be dried flat or air-dried to prevent damage due to heat or warping.


Modern dryers have improved a lot, especially with the implementation of steam technology. Nowadays, it is possible to customize the drying cycle depending on the type of load, fabric, and requirements. If you have followed the suggestions listed in this article and your clothes are still not drying properly, it could indicate a problem with your dryer. Don’t try to troubleshoot your dryer since it could be dangerous. Instead, search for “dryer repair near me” on Google to find and hire local experts that can help you solve the issue.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *