How to Build a Ceiling Mount for an Indoor Clothes Airer

What You'll Need
Stud finder
Lag screw and washers
Tape measure

Indoor clothes airers were used more often long ago to dry clothes both quickly and efficiently. Ceiling mounted clothes airers utilize hot air that rises to the top of a room and gets trapped there to dry wet clothes. As energy efficiency becomes more and more important to home owners, clothes airers are becoming a popular way to replace electric tumble dryers that use up huge amounts of energy.

Step 1 – Determine a Location

First, choose a place where the clothes airer will be able to hang. Clothes that are hung should not be soaking wet, just damp, but that doesn’t mean they won’t ever drip. Don’t place the airer over a bookshelf or anything electronic that may be ruined if dripped on. Also, keep in mind that the ceiling mount will be pulley operated and the ropes that run through the pulleys will need to be tied off to a cord cleat that will be secured to a wall. The closer to a wall the airer is, the less rope will be needed.

Step 2 – Find a Joist

A stud finder must be used to find a joist if the ceiling that the clothes airer is being mounted to is covered by drywall or spray texture. Once the joist has been located, attach a pulley to it with lag screws and washers.   

Step 3 – Measure the Airer

Using a tape measure, find how long the airer is from one end to the other. Then, transfer this measurement to the ceiling by measuring from the previously mounted pulley. Mark the measurement on the ceiling and use the stud finder again to find the joist closest to the mark. Attach a second pulley here. It is possible to use one pulley for a ceiling mount, but two pulleys will distribute the weight of wet clothing better.

Step 4 – Attach a Pulley or Ring to the Wall

Either a pulley or ring will need to be attached to a wall in order to direct the ropes that will lift the airer downward. Find a stud in the wall using the stud finder and attach the pulley or ring with lag screws and washers. Once this is done, affix a cord cleat on the same stud but  further down the wall. Make sure to mount the cleat far enough down the wall that it can be easily reached when standing flat on the floor. This cleat will hold the ropes while the airer is elevated.

Step 5 – Measure and Attach Rope

Measure the distance from the floor to each of the pulleys and double it. Then, add to that the distance from the pulleys to the wall that the cord cleat will be attached to. This will be the rough amount of rope needed for each end of the airer. Affix two pieces of rope across opposite ends of the airer. These rope pieces should be secured from corner to corner on the short ends of the airer. The rope pieces should be long enough that, once attached to the corners, the rope, if pinched in the middle, can be lifted up to form a steep triangle. To the peak of this triangle one must a tie the long pieces of rope that will run up through the pulleys and down the wall.

Step 6 – Test the Fixture

Once the rope has been threaded through the pulleys and down the wall, test the airer by pulling both ropes simultaneously. If the airer goes up and down properly, return it to its lowest desired location (generally the floor) and trim up the ropes along the wall so that when the airer is down, the ropes end at the cord cleat.