Laundry guide — The fault is not always yours Case study: two complaints with a happy end

Immagine del difetto nella zona ascellare della camicia

Damaging your client’s garment in treatment is undoubte dly one of the most unpleasant situations that can happen at work. The aim of this article is to develop a critical sense through the presentation of two case studies where garments were damaged not really due to a wrong washing cycle but because of the poor quality of the garments themselves.

First case: a BLOUSE
Pre-existent FRAYING that got worse after the treatment

A dry-cleaning laundry turned to the laboratory of analysis with a blouse that presented a fraying defect in the area of underarms and on the back. The client claimed that they noticed the defects after the maintenance operations had been carried out at the dry-cleaner’s.

The defect is visible in the underarm area of the blouse

The observations under the stereoscope demonstrated an existing loosening of yarns process, the sliding of warp yarn over the weft yarn.

The defect, as for how it looked and given the area where it was specifically present, has been connected to a mechanical stress the fabric might have been subjected to while in use. Therefore, the defect, the subject of the complaint, cannot have been caused by a wrong cleaning process carried out by the dry-cleaner.

Defect visible under the stereoscope

Clearly, when the garment was brought to the dry-cleaner’s, the defect had already been there. The cleaning treatment only made the situation worse. In order to avoid such un pleasant issues, it is advisable to thoroughly check the garments at all times before the cleaning treatment, and signal
any possible problems to the clients beforehand.

Second Case: TROUSERS
stains that originated during a washing cycle

Let us present another complaint concerning a laundry that treated a pair of trousers. A defect appeared on the pair after it was washed. The pair presented visible stains due to the discoloration of the base dye. After withdrawing the garment, the owner of the trousers then turned to the lab to analyse the case.
The lab observed a very low color solidity of the trousers. The stains that had been formed during the treatment might have been caused by a direct contact of the detergent with the garment that was still dry. It has actually been demon strated that a direct contact of detergents can visibly remove the color from the fabric substrate. The most common situations when such contact can take place are:
1. Detergent placed directly on a stain before washing;
2. detergent placed directly in the drum;
3. standard washing with a detergent.

The pair of trousers after a cleaning treatment


In the second and third case, the direct contact of the detergent with a fabric depends on the washing machine. It could happen that during the first rotations of the machine, the detergent has not been diluted yet, therefore it will deposit on a garment that is still dry. More delicate textiles responding to such phenomena are those made of cotton and treated with particular dyeing techniques.
The examined pair of trousers was destined to even tually present such a defect not really due to the wa
shing process it was subjected to but due to issues linked to the stability of the colorant. •


Detergo Magazine July/August 2019