The 7 Best Hand Wringers
This wiki has been updated 26 times since it was first published in February of 2017. Whether you’re anti-technology, live off the grid, or just don’t own a tumble dryer, one of these hand wringers will help your clothes and towels dry faster by removing much of the water before you hang them on a line. Featuring sturdy rollers, they are great for other uses, too, such as squeezing out chamois cloths used for washing cars, and bathing suits when camping. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
October 16, 2020:
In this update, we added the Gill Manufacturing Heavy Duty to the list, an option that comes in handy for people like artists and those in the trades who frequently purchase paint and adhesive. This manual device is designed to help you wring as much as you can from each tube. It’s also great for a anyone who is determined to get every last drop of toothpaste from a tube before discarding it. It replaces the Panda Spin Dryer on the list, which is a handy device to have on hand, but a portable clothes dryer that is electric and not manual.
We still feel the Northwood Calliger 360 warrants a prominent spot on the list. It can be attached to most surfaces, thanks to its highly adjustable clamping mechanism that can fasten at different angles. The distance between the clamps is adjustable, as well. Also featured here are a couple of models from another well-known name in hand wringers. The Dyna-Jet BL-38 is made to remove up to 90% of the water from clothing and towels. It’s easy to use and is made of sturdy, long-lasting steel. The Dyna-Jet BL-44 can be clamped to a bucket or mounted to a wall, or used in conjunction with a compatible stand sold separately from the manufacturer. It’s got a molded aluminum frame, bronze bearings, and non-marring 12-1/2-inch rubber rollers. For an American-made choice that’s available in black-coated or solid stainless steel, check out the Wisemen Trading Hand Wringer, which is both sturdy and resistant to corrosion. You can purchase it with confidence, thanks to its money-back satisfaction guarantee. For a model that’s designed to attach to large buckets or tubs, you can’t go wrong with the WringMaster Extra Wide, which features a 14-inch width that’s good for wringing out even large towels. It’s made for the long haul, with stainless steel bolts, as well as a powder-coated and anodized steel frame.
June 19, 2019:
It's likely that no one is jumping up and down to do the laundry by hand, so we've looked for options that make the process easy thanks to simple setup and uncomplicated operation. That, and their durable construction, also makes them great for car wash operations of all sizes. Currently, the top names in wringers are still Dyna-Jet and Northwood Calliger, and you'll notice that we've kept options from these companies. We've made sure to include the newest version of the Calliger 360, which has one of the most versatile clamping mechanisms you can find. Highly adjustable, this fastening system allows you to set it up virtually anywhere and with any bucket or tub. It's also fine for both righties and lefties.
Moving on to competitors, we removed the Avalon Bay EcoSpin; it's a good concept, but the execution simply isn't durable enough to make it worth the price. We instead added the Panda Spin Dryer. While this isn't a mangle, it's a common alternative for those who have a lot of clothing or linens to wash every week. But it does run on electricity, so for users who are trying to go off-grid, it defeats the purpose. It probably won't be useful for wringing chamois cloths all day long, either. As an alternative for those with robust needs, you might consider the WringMaster Extra Wide. True to its name, it has a big 14-inch opening that can handle your larger items.
Lehman's Own Laundry Hand Washer with Wringer Anyone who's setting up an off-grid homestead might want to take a look at the Lehman's Own Laundry Hand Washer with Wringer, an all-in-one solution for dirty clothes. It isn't cheap, but it requires no power to operate and uses less water than many other methods and tools, saving you some cash in the long run. lehmans.com
Mini Countertop Spin Dryer 2 If you've got three minutes, you can remove excess water from you towels, bathing suits, and more with the Mini Countertop Spin Dryer 2 from The Laundry Alternative. Although not a wringer, it's still portable at only 11 pounds, and it requires less work from you, as it's powered by electricity. laundry-alternative.com
Who Uses Hand Wringers?
Some might wonder, though, why anyone would need a hand wringer in this day and age, when washing machines are so common.
A hand wringer, also called a laundry wringer or mangle, is an electricity-free device that helps press extra water out of clothing and linens in order to make rinsing more efficient or to help them dry faster after washing. If you’ve ever tried to wring out a wet towel by hand, you can see why a laundry wringer is so useful; not only does twisting the fabric make your arms tired, it’s also likely to get you all wet. Anyone needing to put the squeeze on some wet garments, then, is well served by the humble hand wringer.
Some might wonder, though, why anyone would need a hand wringer in this day and age, when washing machines are so common. After all, if you really want to conserve your energy, letting a machine do all the work would be the easiest way to go. But there are a handful of times when a hand wringer will beat out a fancy washing machine.
For instance, many people invest in a high-quality mangle for disaster prep. No, we aren’t talking about the apocalypse or end of the world; a hurricane, winter storm, or wildfire can cause localized disasters that leave people without power for long stretches. In 2017, Hurricane Harvey knocked out power to at least a quarter of a million homes, with 4,000 of these still without power weeks after the event. Having non-powered versions of common electric items, such as a hand wringer, makes life less stressful in these times.
A hand wringer also lends itself nicely to some day-to-day scenarios. At a car wash where vehicles are hand dried, a wringer is a huge help that keeps workers from having to wring out chamois cloths all day long. In fact, some hand wringers are made expressly for this purpose and are a strong choice for both commercial enterprises and the home auto mechanic or car enthusiast.
Sometimes RVers invest in a laundry wringer, too. Today’s compact hand wringers don’t take up much space and more than make up for the room they do use. If a laundromat isn’t available and the clothes have to be hand or bucket washed, a wringer will be invaluable. Or perhaps after a morning of swimming you’re ready to hit the road, but you don’t want dripping towels strewn across your rig. A quick run through the hand wringer will help get these towels drier faster, and with less mess.
If you’re used to tossing everything in a washing machine, doing laundry by hand can feel a little overwhelming at first. Even the hand wringer, which looks so simple, can suddenly feel complex when you’ve got a pile of wet clothes to first rinse and then to dry. But don’t worry: we’ve got a few tips to help you make the process painless, as well as keep your laundry and linens in great shape for longer.
Make sure every item is flat as you run it through, as well.
First, you need to secure the wringer properly to a sturdy surface. Most have clamps that you tighten to securely affix the wringer, usually to a bucket, tub, or board. Manufacturers generally include instructions about how this should be accomplished for each particular model. There are also stands available made expressly to hold wringers, if you’d prefer to go that route.
Also, follow the wringer’s instructions and don’t use it with items for which it isn’t intended. Some smaller versions, for example, are made for lighter pieces, such as hand towels, undergarments, and shirts. If you try to force heavier items, such as jeans, through them, you could damage the wringer. Make sure every item is flat as you run it through, as well. Overall, going a little slower and paying attention while moving clothing through the machine will help you extend the life of your wringer.
Consider, too, that there are some items you won’t want to put through a mangle. Because they exert quite a bit of force, they can break delicate buttons or snaps. They’ve also been known to bend bras out of shape, specifically the underwire or closure hooks. You may wish to hand wring these items, instead. You can roll them up in a towel and squeeze gently, which will remove the extra moisture faster and with less stress on delicate items.
Finally, be careful where you place your hands as you’re working. A hand wringer certainly isn’t as dangerous as, say, a circular saw, but you could still give your hand or fingers a painful pinch. Keep your wringer away from very young children, and supervise older children if they’re going to help you with the laundry.
A Brief History Of The Hand Wringer
The hand wringer is not a new invention by any stretch of the imagination. The oldest version has been traced back to the 1400s in Norway, although many of these earliest mangles were made for flattening and de-wrinkling clothes — what we would use an iron for, today. By the 18th century, large box mangles, used to both dry and press clothing, had become common.
It was in the 1840s that the hand wringer took on the form that we’re more familiar with, thanks to John E. Turnbull and his hand-crank mangle for the household washing tub.
It was in the 1840s that the hand wringer took on the form that we’re more familiar with, thanks to John E. Turnbull and his hand-crank mangle for the household washing tub. This new and improved version was smaller than the old box mangles, which made it easier for nearly every home to have one. Many versions featured wood rollers, since rubber was harder to come by up until World War II, when synthetic rubber became more widely available.
In some ways, these precursors to the spin-cycle on a washing machine may have been better for clothing. True, a washer-and-dryer combo will get your laundry done much faster, but they can be rough on your garments, shortening their lifespan. A hand wringer will flatten your garments without the heat and steam of an iron, too, which also take their toll on clothing. The hand wringer may be old, but it definitely has its advantages.