Dry cleaning is any cleaning process for clothing and textiles using a chemical other than water. The solvent used is typically tetrachloroethlyne. In the past, residents of the Roman Empire used ammonia for dry cleaning because it was prominent in the local industries. However, the cleaning process evolved and in the 1930s the use of tetrachloroethlyne became prevalent. Dry cleaning is used because certain clothes are too delicate and cannot withstand the roughness of a washing machine. The dry cleaning helps to retain their originality. Depending on the situation, dry cleaning can be used instead of normal washing machine, though it is rarely done. It can also be used to replace labor in hand washing.
Delicate washing on the other hand is used for delicate attires. They are said to be delicate because they cannot withstand the heat emitted by most washers. The temperature required for delicate washing is slightly above room temperature. The washing is done in a gentle way to help retain the original color of the clothes and ensure that the quality of the material is not tampered with. Cold water is used in the washing cycle. This is meant to ensure that the washing is done at room temperature.
These two types of washing have differences and similarities as well.
Though dry cleaning and delicate washing may appear to be two different things, they have some similarities.
-Both the dry cleaning and delicate washing are used for delicate fabrics which cannot be washed by the normal washing machine or by hand wash.
-In both, machines are used. These machines have well put structures that make the washing cycles effective. The machines are also operated using electricity.
-Both can be used in homes as well as for commercial purposes.
Dry cleaning is not dependent on the temperature. The clothing and textiles for dry cleaning can withstand the high temperatures produced by the machine. As a result, if you intend to dry clean, then temperature won’t be a factor that you would have to consider. What’s more important is the type of solvent used and ensuring that the clothes are of a dry clean fabric.
This could be different with the delicate washing which is highly dependent on temperature. The clothes that require the delicate washing are very delicate that high temperatures have the potential to tamper with their originality. This is the reason why cold water is used in delicate washing. It helps regulate the temperature for effective cleaning. If the temperatures go beyond the room temperature, then chances are that the cloth may not be washed to expectations.
The materials that require dry cleaning are; velvet, silk, acetate, leather, wool and taffeta. These fabrics do not do well with water. Some fabrics like leather ware fast when put in water thus shortening their lifespan. In order to extend their life period, they need to be cleaned using a dry cleaner because the solvent is friendly to them. Delicate washing is done for fabrics like silk, synthetics, spandex, nylon, rayon, acetate, polyester and blends. A blend is one fabric that is very delicate. It consists of different fabrics, which if not well taken care of can lead to one wearing out and leaving the other still in good condition. Other fabrics like cotton-blend sweaters are very fragile and can stretch.
The agent used in the dry cleaning is tetrachloroethlyne. It is used because it is stable, nonflammable and gentle for most garments. It has an excellent cleaning power thus its work is not questionable. When it comes to delicate washing, cold water is used. This is to ensure that the temperatures are at or slightly above the room temperature, which is recommended for the delicate cloths like lingerie.
Advantages of dry clean and delicate wash
-They save time as they are fast unlike when washing one garment at a time: When doing dry cleaning or delicate washing, one has to put a certain quantity (preferably a basin) of the clothes to be washed at once.
-They reduce labor as the person’s input is minimal: You need to put the reagents in the machine together with your clothes and put it on. Much of the work is done by the machine.
-They are user friendly: Anyone one can use them regardless of the gender, age and nationality.
Challenges of using the dry clean and delicate wash
-They are quite expensive compared to the usual hand washing. The cost of managing them is also high and one has to be financially fit to manage them.
-Both need good care and regular maintenance because as electronics, they are subject to many dangers. These are dangers from electrical issues like black outs. In addition, all electronic appliances tend to wear with time, especially if not well taken care of.
-They replace human labor in some areas thus reducing employment of the people that would work in such places. One machine may replace around 10 people meaning that they will be left jobless.
Having a dry cleaner and the delicate washing machine is a good way to improving one’s home, especially when it comes to reducing the burden of cleaning responsibilities. This is clearly shown by their advantages. With the current development in technology, one would need to match the machine they want with their current situation. In a state like Singapore which is about 137km north of the equator, one does not need heavy clothing. It’s a place of high temperatures which requires light and bright clothes. These are the fabrics that would not do well when hand washed. Bright colors need more attention, which means they would do well with the delicate wash. Very light cloths are also needed for one to withstand the high temperatures of Singapore. Such fabrics need delicate washing as they are in the class of chiffon and silk. If washed under high temperatures, they may not withstand the heat thus leading to their wearing.
We cannot avoid any of them because they serve us differently. If one follows the steps well, they may realize just how beneficial they are.