How to Use Dryer Balls: A Complete Guide


Here’s what you need to know about how to use dryer balls to make your laundry routine more effective and environmentally-friendly.

The world of laundry marketing has produced quite an array of solutions to help your clothes be fluffier out of the dryer. These have included dryer sheets, dryer bars, and the newest addition: dryer balls. How do these mysterious products work? Are they better than the alternatives? Here’s what you need to know about using dryer balls to save time, money, and the planet with a more effective and environmentally-friendly laundry routine.

Types of Dryer Balls

There are currently two main types of dryer balls on the market. One is a ball made with plastic or rubber materials that has bumpy spines all over it. These dryer balls resemble a dog toy at first glance! The second is usually made of natural, fibrous material – such as felt from wool. This is very smooth and round and resembles the outside of a tennis ball or even a ball of yarn.

What’s the difference? They both do essentially the same thing in that they get tossed into your just-washed laundry as you are putting the clothes into the dryer, but wool balls perform slightly better and are compostable. The more eco-friendly choice is the wool option.

What do Dryer Balls do?

Tossing a couple of the dryer balls in with the load helps in a couple of ways:

  • They tumble around with the clothes, preventing those wadded up knots that can happen with larger pieces of clothing, such as sheets and towels. Since these knots can prevent the clothes from drying evenly (and cause wrinkles), using the dryer balls can reduce drying time that would be needed to finish drying these wadded-up balls of clothes.
  • They “bump” into your fabrics, naturally softening up your clothes. Unlike chemical softener products, they don’t coat the fibers with anything sticky or smooth, and dryer balls in no way decrease the absorbency of your towels. (It isn’t recommended that you use most chemical fabric softener products on towels, for this reason!)
  • The felt or wool dryer balls have an added advantage of absorbing a bit of the moisture from the clothes, as well. It can help knock some time off your dryer cycle and keep those “wadded-up” laundry knots we talked about from retaining water and increasing your drying time.

Why Dryer Balls are a Good Thing

Using dryer balls is good for your laundry and the planet! Dryer balls soften by naturally fluffing up your clothes, and they reduce wrinkles and knots. They can be part of an eco-friendly laundry routine when you consider that they are chemical-free, add nothing toxic to the air emitted from the dryer, and don’t cause any residue or build-up on your clothing. Since they have the potential to decrease drying time (no more knotted sheets), they help keep your electric or gas bill lower and reduce wear and tear on your dryer.

How to Use Dryer Balls

Using dryer balls is as easy as 1-2-3!

  1. Add your wet laundry to the dryer
  2. Toss in a dryer ball
  3. Choose your dry cycle

The wool dryer balls will take care of the rest! Remember, wool dryer balls help shorten dryer time, so you may not need to run the dryer for as long as you have previously.

Frequently Asked Questions

Have more questions about how to use dryer balls? Looking for some pro tips? We’re here to help.

How many dryer balls are you supposed to use?

How many dryer balls to use can depend on the size of the dryer ball. Dropps XL Wool Dryer balls have a diameter of 3.5 inches, so you would only need to use one dryer ball per load of laundry. If you are using a large capacity dryer or washing heavy items like towels, you can add two for an even faster dry.

How long do wool dryer balls last?

You’ll know it’s time to replace your wool dryer balls when the felt starts to loosen up and they begin to unravel. Dropps XL Wool Dryer Balls last for 10,000 loads, which means they should outlive your dryer!

What is the best way to use dryer balls?

Wool dryer balls can be used in any dryer load to naturally soften fabric and reduce drying time. Dropps Wool Dryer balls are safe for all fabric types, so prepare to make them a standard part of your laundry routine! Pro Tip: Add a few drops of essential oils to your dryer balls to lightly scent your clothes as they dry!

Are dryer balls bad for my dryer?

Not at all! Dryer balls are meant to bounce around in your laundry, so don’t be alarmed if they cause a bit of a “bump, bump” sound to come from inside your machine. That’s what they are meant to do. Because they are small in size and made from softer materials, they won’t cause damage to your machine with their harmless bumping about.