AS AUTUMN approaches, it gets harder to air-dry clothes outside in the sunshine but it's still not cold enough to have every radiator turned up to the max indoors.
Heated electric clothes airers are a nifty solution, which can be set up in any room to dry batches of clothes quickly and easily.
With energy prices increasing, it's also often a cheaper option as heated airers are more cost-effective than using a tumble dryer or heating up all your household radiators to dry your clothes.
An electric clothes drying rack gives you the benefits of both as you plug it in and it gently heats up to dry clothes in just a few hours or less (depending on the material).
Many items of clothing can't be tumble-dried without damaging or shrinking the material and an airer is more energy efficient and kinder to clothes, as well as space-saving — an electric airer can be set up in any room (such as a bedroom) out of your way and folded and stored away when not in use.
If this sounds like something you need for your home, read on as we've rounded up some of the best electric clothes airers available to buy now.
Best heated clothes airers at a glance:
- Best heated clothes airer with a cover:Dry: Soon Deluxe
- Best heated clothes airer for low running costs: Dunelm Heated Ladder Airer
- Best overall heated clothes airer: Tower T25001 230W
- Best family heated clothes airer:BLACK+DECKER 630
- Best compact heated clothes airer:Oypla Electrical Heated Folding Clothes Horse
- Best motorised heated clothes airer: JML Dri Buddi
- Best heated clothes airer for speedy drying:Dunelm Heated Clothes Airer With Wings
- Best value heated clothes airer with wings: Highlands electric clothes dryer
- Best heated clothes airer for bathrooms:Homefront electric dryer rack
Best heated clothes airer with a cover: Lakeland Dry: Soon Deluxe
- Dry: Soon Deluxe 3-Tier Heated Clothes Airer with cover - bundle offer, £177.98 at Lakeland — buy now
Tiers: 3, Drying capacity: 15kg, Power: 300W, Cover included: Yes
For households creating larger loads of washing, the Lakeland Dry: Soon Deluxe has three tiers of hanging space that can be extended out to dry multiple garments or folded to make space for longer garments such as dresses or jeans.
It can hold up to 15kg of washing on 21m of drying space — however, our washing machine can only hold 8kg and we struggled for space, so we'd say this would be for smaller pieces of clothing such as socks and underwear.
The airer costs less than 6p an hour to run. When we tested it, we had a full stack of clothes drying with the electricity on for half a day, which would have cost 36p.
This bundle includes the airer itself and a cover, which helps to dry clothes more quickly but still with mesh panels to allow air flow to stop the airer getting too hot.
Plus, you can use the cover as a storage bag for the airer when you're not using it.
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Best motorised heated clothes airer: JML Dri Buddi
- JML Dri Buddi, £75 at Argos — buy now
Drying capacity: 10kg, Power: 1200W
The JML Dri Buddi keeps your clothes dry and crisp, and uses 25% less energy thanks to its 1200W motor unit.
It holds up to 10kg of damp clothing at a time and doesn't damage fabric. The warm air motor helps creases drop out, making it feel like clothes have been dried on an outdoor washing line.
And as a bonus, it's easy to put together; we had it up and running in less than five minutes.
Best heated clothes airer for low running costs: Dunelm Heated Ladder Airer
- Dunelm Heated Ladder Airer, £40 at Dunelm — buy now
Tiers: 6, Drying capacity: 5kg, Power: 90W
This smart heated ladder airer is slimline and compact, with the capacity to take 5kg of washing.
Ideal to keep towels warm in the bathroom, it could also be used for smaller items of clothing as an extra drying option.
Its space-saving design means you can leave it out all the time and it doesn't need to be stored between uses.
Best overall heated clothes airer: Tower T25001 230W Y-shaped heated clothes airer
- Tower Y-Shaped Heated Clothes Airer, 2 Foldable Wings T25001 230W, 79.99 at Coopers Direct - buy here
Tiers: 1 (with wings), Power: 230W, Cover included: No
The Tower T25001 has two foldable wings for those days you have an extra bit of washing, meaning that it's a great option for households with heaps of washing one week and not-so-much the next.
While not the best heated airer for larger families due to its size, it is great for those who have small children.
It heats up to a maximum temperature of 55°C, meaning clothes dry quickly - and the heating source operates using a low energy cost for efficiency, meaning no big energy bills.
You can also fold this away so it doesn't take up much room when not in use.
Best family heated clothes airer: BLACK+DECKER 63099
- BLACK+DECKER 63099 3-Tier Heated Clothes Airer, £169.90 at Amazon - buy here
Tiers: 3, Drying capacity: 15kg, Cover included: No (but available separately)
This easy to use electric clothes dryer has three tiers of space to accommodate up to 15kg of washing - perfect for bigger households or families creating plenty of washing.
Plus, the extra height works well for hanging longer items of clothing and bedding over the top.
It arrives ready to go so no assembly is required - you can just fold it out and lock the tiers into place - plus, it folds flat for easy storage when it's not in use.
Best compact heated clothes airer: Oypla electrical heated folding clothes horse
- Oypla Electrical Heated Folding Clothes Horse Airer Dryer, £42.99 at OnBuy — buy now
Tiers: 1, Power: 120W, Cover included: No
This heated airer is great if you're short on space as it comes in two bits, which are easy enough to put together and then take back apart when you need to fold it away.
It is super economical, costing the same as a 120W light bulb to run - and the size helps keep the costs of running it down.
It's ideal for drying jumpers, hanging laundry or even warming up towels - but is more suited to smaller households due to its size.
Best heated clothes airer for speedy drying: Dunelm Heated Clothes Airer With Wings
- Dunelm electric heated airer with wings, £65 at Dunelm — buy now
Tiers: 1 (plus wings), Drying capacity: 15kg, Power: 230W
This sturdy aluminium heated airer has 18 heated bars to dry your clothes and a low energy consumption, costing just 6p per hour to run.
Designed with fold out wings for extra drying space, you can dry your clothes quickly but the wings fold neatly down for easy flat storage.
One reviewer wrote: "really pleased with the dryer. holds a good amount of items and certainly speeds up drying time."
Best value heated clothes airer with wings: Highlands electric clothes dryer
- Highlands Electric Heated Clothes Dryer, £47.75 at Amazon - buy here
Tiers: 1 (plus wings), Drying capacity: 10kg
It features 18 bars so it should give you enough space to hang your clothes and it's also compact enough when it's time to store it.
This heated airer should use less than 4p per hour to run, making it a great energy saving alternative to tumble dryers and also kinder to clothes than tumble dryers.
One happy customer wrote: "Must have, especially during the winter period! A* product if treated properly."
Best heated clothes airer for bathrooms: Homefront electric dryer rack
Homefront Electric Heated Clothes Airer Dryer Rack,£59.99 at Amazon, buy here
This clothes dryer rack evenly dries up to two metres of washing: perfect for drying t-shirts, socks, underwear and more.
Thanks to its sleek design, this rack could easily be left out even when it's not in use, perhaps in the bathroom as a stylish heated towel rack.
It is also made of Aluminium, meaning you won't need pegs to keep your clothes in place. Functional and stylish!
What is an electric heated clothes airer?
Heated clothes airers use electricity to heat up clothes, basically speeding up the process of your clothes drying.
With the help of an electric heated clothes airer, you can bid farewell to any possibility of your wardrobe smelling like damp from taking too long to dry.
Each heated airer has its own way of getting clothes dry in terms of airflow or airer covers. And, some heated airers have timers to make them safer.
Think of it as a radiator for your clothes but cheaper than having the heating on.
How to use an electric heated clothes airer
Each heated clothes airer has individual instructions, although they are generally similar to operate — you hang your clothes on the airer (the amount of washing you can fit will obviously depend on how big your airer is), then plug it into the socket and switch it on.
Are heated clothes airers worth it?
Think of electric heated clothes airers as an upgrade from your bog-standard drying racks.
Often, letting clothes dry on an ordinary airer can leave them to smell damp because they just take too long to dry without the help of some sunshine. Britain's not reliable for that either.
In terms of saving time, and money on your central heating, heated clothes airers are definitely worth splashing out on.
In fact, you don't actually need to spend much when you know where to look. We'd say the average budget should be around £60.
Are electric heated clothes airers safe?
If used responsibly, heated clothes airers are perfectly safe to use, although they shouldn't be left on overnight or unattended.
For any electrical appliance, always read the instructions and safety advice before using it.
Are electric heated clothes airers any good?
The airers we tested definitely got the job done. However, it is more to do with energy efficiency and the cost of using them that separates the best ones from the mid-tier models.
We also love heated airers that can be folded and stored easily. This means that people in smaller households can put them away when they're not using them.
How long does it take to dry clothes on an electric heated airer?
How long it takes to dry your clothes really depends on the wattage and size of your airer.
It will usually take around three to four hours for cotton or linen to dry on your heated airer, whereas thicker fabrics such as knit jumpers might take ten hours.
But that's much quicker than an old fashioned, non-electric one.
Are electric heated airers expensive to run?
The majority of heated clothes airers are not expensive, with some costing as little as 3p an hour to run.
However, it's best to check with your energy provider to get an estimate on how much it costs to run a heated clothes airer.
Are heated airers energy efficient?
Did you know that heated airers are actually more environmentally-friendly than having your heating on and drying your clothes on a non-electric drying rack?
You can save money on energy bills by investing in one, that's for sure.
Can I leave my electric clothes dryer on overnight?
Just to be safe, it's best to not leave your electric clothes dryer on when you are out, or if you are sleeping.
Like with anything that emits heat, electric clothes dryers can be fire hazards when left on for too long.
Where to buy electric heated clothes airers
How much are heated airers?
So we know they're faster, but how much do heated clothes airers cost to run?
A heated clothes airer can be priced at as little as £29.99 or less, depending on the style or where it is from.
On the higher end of the scale, three-tier heated clothes airers can go for nearly £200.
If you want to save some money when shopping for a heated airer, click the links below for The Sun's vouchers at each retailer for a discount: