Conventional electric dryers are 220 volt appliances that draw 4500 watts.
To run a dryer for a single hour every day for one month will require a charging
source of 4500 watt-hours daily. At seven hours of daily insolation, that
is equal to three 224-watt solar panels. Four inverters are required to
operate this one appliance. The capital cost in panels and inverters just
to operate a conventional dryer one hour per day is around $14,000.
Hybrid dryers use electrical motors to turn the drum and propane burners to
heat. These units are priced comparably to conventional dryers, perhaps
5-10% more costly, and at 800 watts of 110 volt power draw, they require about
one half of one solar panel for a charging source. While helpful in
reducing the electrical requirement, hybrid dryers have a much larger carbon
footprint because they burn fossil fuels directly.
The most environmentally sustainable approach to clothes drying is to keep it
to a minimum and dry clothes on the line whenever possible, preserving the dryer
for the rainy season when there is no other way to get clothes properly dry.