Since you have got your hands on a clothesline pulley, let us help you get started on getting your ceiling clothesline up and running.
We'll talk about the key considerations for every step of the process.
We took the liberty of throwing in some great suggestions to make sure that your project flows as smooth as silk.
Read on to get started!
Things You Need to Install a Clothesline Pulley:
Drill and drill bit that match the diameter of your washing line pulleys’ screws/fasteners
Fully assembled ceiling airer
The pair of pulleys that came with your airer
Screws/extra long screws for sturdy anchoring of your clothes line pulleys
Rope, pre-determined length (for the pulley)
Stud finder (optional)
Choose the Correct Spot
We consider this as the ultimate ‘make or break’ factor.
Finding the right location for your washing line pulley is important since you want your airer to do its job quickly while keeping them away from unsanitary particles.
Otherwise, bad stuff won’t only end up on your body but also inside your closet and bedroom.
Truth be told, this has more to do with having your clothesline installed outdoors rather than inside your house.
For starters, ensure that you choose a site that is situated away from your house’s eave vents.
Some homes have crawl spaces that can be littered with dust and creepy crawlies, breezy days can cause all those stuff to be blown out of the vent and onto your clothes.
Keep it Away From Exhaust Vents
It’s a no brainer too that your ceiling mounted clothesline should be placed far from kitchen and bathroom exhausts.
It is best if the drying area gets exposed to sunlight in the afternoon which can sanitise your clothes and keep unwanted smells at bay.
The eaves should be broad enough to protect your clothes from the rain so you don’t have to rush your way out and take them down when it starts to pour.
Indoor placement is a little easier, just make sure that it is near windows if the room does not have proper ventilation.
Placing a ceiling clothesline near or under an HVAC vent makes for really fast drying times.
If you prefer to line dry clothes inside your house but do not have a laundry room that can accommodate a clothesline.
Another compelling solution is to convert a small, unused closet to an indoor drying zone.
This tiny space can be equipped with a ceiling and wall mounted fold-down airer to allow for a very dense drying session, thanks to the assistance of a dehumidifier.
Set it on timer for at least eight hours, hang some dryer sheets in there and your clothes will be dry in the morning while smelling fresh and clean, you can even leave your articles hanging inside—without worrying about dust or rain getting to them.
Locating the Joists
Now that you’ve found the right spot for your clothesline, it’s time locate the wood joists in your ceiling.
Bear in mind that the clothesline pulleys you are about to install can’t be mounted on just any part of the ceiling.
It is imperative that the screws are embedded into metal studs or joists so that the whole system will be up to the task of carrying full laundry loads, same thing goes for the cleat.
This guarantees a secure install and keeps your ceiling from caving down on you—we wouldn’t want that to happen.
It is always a good idea to take a look at your home’s wiring diagram, too, prior to drilling holes into the wall or ceiling.
This way, you can avoid dangerous electrical lines.
It can also help you formulate a different strategy in the event that your initial plan will run into a roadblock like this.
One method in properly locating joists is by tapping on the ceiling -- like tapping an empty can of beans.
You’ll notice that a part of the ceiling panel or drywall will give off a light ‘thud’ which indicates a hollow area.
A more solid ‘thud’ means there is a supporting structure behind it where you can drill or screw into.
Use a Stud Finder
The real problem starts for those with energy efficient homes which have thick insulation.
The thick material makes it a challenge to determine where the beams/joists are.
For this scenario, we recommend getting your hands on an electronic stud finder.
Stud finders are able to accurately pinpoint joists by detecting varying material densities underneath a surface (like a sonar).
Some can even spot electrical wires so it’s a really useful tool to own if you don’t have the house’s electrical diagram on hand or if you simply do a lot of DIY home improvement projects.
Installing the Washing Line Pulleys and Cleat
Once you’re done finding the joists, mark the anchoring points where you can pre-drill the hole.
You can choose to manually turn the clothes line pulleys into the ceiling with your hands.
That method might present a problem though, it is a bit more difficult to control the angle of the screw so pre-drilling is a must.
For ceilings with insulated panels, you might be inclined to use extra long screws.
Using a longer screw can break through the insulation and reach the joist underneath for adequate support.
Ensure that both clothesline pulleys are levelled and aligned with each other.
Only then can you start screwing in the cleat just as you have with the pulleys.
Verify that you are hitting into a stud as well using your stud finder when choosing a location for the cleat.
While the majority of the weight is going to be carried by the clothes line pulleys, the cleat will also exhibit quite a bit of force against the wall so it must be securely fastened.
Do not forget to use screw fasteners if you’re drilling into concrete.
You will want to position the cleat somewhere within an arm’s reach.
Avoid installing it too far away from the pulleys unless you have a very long rope.
The shorter the rope is and the farther the cleat, the less you will be able to control the height of the clothesline.
Use an Extra Pulley
Lifting up a fully loaded airer exerts a lot of force on the pulley system.
A third pulley will take some load off of the main ones and make it easier to situate the cleat farther away.
You might want to consider taking this route if you have mobility issues.
It's also a great way to make the operation of your ceiling clothesline smoother and a lot easier in the long run.
Using an extra pulley also allows you to free up some headroom in your laundry area.
Another great thing about using an extra pulley is it helps distribute the weight of your clothesline more evenly.
Thread the Rope
Below is a very informative video on how to install the washing line pulley of a ceiling mounted clothesline.
It also includes the proper way to thread the rope, we advise you to watch it from start to finish since it will definitely make the installation process a lot less daunting for you:
Choose a spot near windows and HVAC intake/output vents if you’re installing your clothesline indoors.
Check home’s wiring diagram before you proceed to avoid electrical lines.
Locate joists to be drilled into since the your clothesline pulley system can’t just be attached to any part of the ceiling, imperative that joists are properly located.
Use a stud finder for best results.
Pre-drill the holes to guarantee perfect screw angle and use extra long screws to break through thick insulation.
Keep pulleys levelled and perfectly aligned for smoother operation.
Install the cleat on a sturdy part of the wall, use screw sleeves if drilling into concrete.
Watch the video above to wrap things up with threading the rope to the pulleys.