NEW ORLEANS — Establishing the best drop-off service can be as easy as mastering some cleaning basics, according to garment-care expert Jane Rising, past director of education for the Drycleaning & Laundry Institute (DLI). Rising conducted the Friday-morning educational session Garment-Care Tool Kit: Stain-Removal Basics at Clean ’09.Most stains should come out if you follow some simple steps, such as checking the pockets, properly sorting the clothing, pretreating stains, selecting the right water temperature, and checking for stains before drying, Rising said.Don’t underestimate the value of sorting, she added. If you sort by color, soil and fabric type, you can avoid color transfer to lights, poor soil removal and lint going from one item to another.Pretreat heavily soiled items using prewash stain-removal products, liquid detergent, or powdered detergent, or simply soak the clothing. Operators should also practice what they preach and avoid overloading the washer. Overloading results in several problems, such as poor cleaning, wrinkling, excessive wear on garments, and light streaks on dark items, Rising added. Also keep in mind that a high water level means less mechanical action, and a low water level means more mechanical action.Even if you follow the basics steps and are familiar with a variety of specific stains and stain-removal tactics, the drop-off process isn’t over when the clothes leave the washer. After washing, Rising advised show attendees to check for stains before drying, and not to mix light with heavy-weight items because:
- They take longer to dry.
- Delicate fabrics get over-dried.
- More wrinkles develop.
- High temperatures can damage synthetic fabrics.