Dry cleaning your clothes has a few advantages over washing them with water. Not only do they make the attires maintain that authentic look, but they also help them last longer. But how long does dry cleaning take?
Some clothes can never turn out okay unless dry cleaned. However, most people wonder how efficient would such a process be?
We have the answer here as well as a few tips on matters dry-cleaning. Let’s get on with it right away.
What is Dry Cleaning?
Dry cleaning is a garment cleaning process that doesn’t make use of water or detergent. Instead, it makes use of a particular solvent that evaporates quickly once in contact with your clothes.
The fact it doesn’t use water is why it is commonly known as dry cleaning. The liquid solvent typically contains very little water.
Dry cleaning professionals do it with massive and highly technical machines that run the solvent through clothes while passing it through filters to remove impurities. After passing through filters, distillation purifies the solvent for use again.
How Long Does Dry Cleaning Take?
The time your clothes take at the dry cleaners will depend on various factors.
On average, a dry-cleaning procedure shouldn’t take more than three to four hours. It would, however, depend on how dirty the clothes you are cleaning are.
A few other factors are what make it take several days for you to get your clothes from the dry cleaner’s. To understand just why it wouldn’t take only a few hours mentioned to get your clothes, you have to understand the full process involved.
What Are the Steps Involved in Dry Cleaning?
There several steps your clothes are taken through once you drop them off at the dry cleaners.
Whenever you drop your clothes over at the dry cleaners, they first undergo inspection and tagging to ensure they are distinguishable from the other garments. The tag remains on the clothes until you pick them up again—that way, it is easier to identify them.
The dry-cleaning specialist expertly gets rid of any stains or spots on the clothing. They do that with the help of a few specialized solutions. The dry cleaner is an expert in this sort of work, so your garments are in good hands.
The dry cleaner sorts the clothes according to color and material. A significant consideration is given to manufacturers’ recommendations to avoid damaging the garments.
A special solvent that can remove dirt and stains is the principal cleaning agent in the dry cleaning of the garments. The internationally standard solvent is usually a clear solution that cleans delicate fabric while maintaining it in original shape.
The dry cleaner then dries the clothes at the right temperature. Again, the manufacturer’s recommendations are taken into consideration while doing this to preserve the clothes.
The dry cleaner presses the garments to remove creases or wrinkles for that clean, pristine look. That is because most dry-cleaned clothes retain so many wrinkles and creases on completion.
The pressing done at the dry cleaners is topnotch and wouldn’t be typically replicated at home with your hand iron.
Finally, the dry-cleaning attendant packs the garments for you to come and collect them at your convenience.
The actual dry-cleaning process, as we had mentioned before, doesn’t take that long. But as you can see from all the above steps, it translates to a longer time before you can pick them from the dry cleaners.
For some clothes, you can get them on the same day, but some, you have to pick after two or three days, depending on their fabric.
What Type of Clothes Should You Dry Clean?
A few types of clothes come with the dry clean only tag. That’s because the agitation in handwashing would damage them.
At the back of the neck of the garment, there is a tag that tells you whether it is a good idea washing such a garment with water. The label can also be found somewhere else like on the seams.
So, what are some of the clothes that should ALWAYS be dry cleaned?
Ever tried to wet wash a suit? What were the results? Disastrous, we bet. If you hand wash a suit, it would lose its shape and shrink to a weird version of the original. Most suits are usually dry cleaned.
- Silky Clothes
The problem with washing silk with water is that it contains what we call bleeding dye. The silk will lose most of its color to the water.
That’s why you have to dry-clean them. If you insist on handwashing, then use cold water and a mild detergent. Also, remember to be very gentle.
- Garments with Linings
The lining in such garments might break down if hand-washed. That’s why you need to dry clean them if you are to preserve the.
- Woolen Garments
The problem with washing woolen garments with water is that wool shrinks. You might damage your favorite pullover if you insist on handwashing it. It would be best if you dry clean woolen garments. If that isn’t an option, it is advisable to gently wash them with cold water.
Read Also: How Long Does It Take for Carpet to Dry?
What Kind of Garments Doesn’t Need Dry Cleaning?
- Synthetic Fabric
You don’t have to dry clean synthetic fabric since they won’t shrink. Such materials include polyester, spandex, acrylic, acetate, and nylon. You, therefore, can wash them with warm water.
However, remember that they can wrinkle when dried with a hot drier. Go gentle on the drying to avoid the wrinkles.
- Cotton Garments
Cotton garments such as cotton shirts come preshrunk and, therefore, won’t shrink when washed in water. Consequently, they don’t need dry cleaning.
- Jeans and Denim
Dry cleaning jeans and denim pieces will leave you with a wrinkled garment that you probably won’t wear again. It is recommended you handwash them at home to preserve their look.
Why Can’t You Dry Clean All Your Clothes?
It would be best if you got this: you can’t dry clean just any garment.
Apart from dry-cleaning, the other popular way of cleaning clothes is the wet cleaning method. It makes use of a washing machine or the old school water in a bucket technique.
While the old school way is a highly versatile model of cleaning, you can’t clean all clothes with the technique. That’s where dry-cleaning steps in.
Several factors come into play when considering which clothes to dry clean.
- The composition of the garment’s fiber and its construction
Some clothes come with too delicate fiber that wouldn’t survive contact with water. Such garments require dry-cleaning to preserve them for as long as possible.
- The fabrics dye composition
If you’ve washed a garment with a strong dye composition before, you notice that washing with water will have the colors coming right off. After cleaning that way for some time, the clothe loses its color and becomes faded.
Such clothes require dry-cleaning to maintain their color for as long as possible.
- The dirt on the garment
You can’t get rid of some dirt on a garment with dry-cleaning. That’s because such dirt requires vigorous washing with water to remove the soil that may be on the garment.
- The nature of linings or trims used in the garment
Some fabric linings can easily tear apart when washed with water. You, therefore, have to dry clean them to maintain their look.
Why Pick Dry Cleaning?
Despite wet cleaning being the most common way of cleaning garments, it can’t measure up to dry cleaning due to a few demerits.
For starters, clothes washed with water don’t last that long. That’s because the water used stretches the fabric’s fibers making them shrink or fade over time.
Also, washing with water doesn’t have the desired effect on grease or oil stains as dry-cleaning solvents. The dry-cleaning solvents are effective removers of such stains thanks to their fast action.
Finally, some clothes cant be hand washed. That’s because such clothes would lose their shape and shrink if washed with water. Manufacturer recommendations are that you dry clean them.
Important Points to Remember
- Every time you take your garments to the dry cleaner’s for cleaning, always inform them of any spots or stains on the garment. Also, tell them if you have any concerns about the quality of the garment.
- Remember always to be polite to the staff at the dry cleaners. Who knows they might one day come through for you when you need that quick dry cleaning?
- If you own a suit or suits, you need to dry clean them every once in a while, to get rid of any mold or dirt that might make them a habitat.
Again, how long does dry cleaning take? Well, now, you know. Remember that not all clothes need a trip to the dry cleaners since you can hand wash them at home. All the best.