Launder safely: Extend the life of your FR garments with proper care
A recent survey conducted by Mount Vernon found that only 29% of respondents said that they are extremely familiar with flame resistant clothing care and maintenance. That's why it is important to educate employees about proper ways to launder FRC at home so that garments perform as designed for their full service life.
- Flame resistant clothing should be laundered separately from the family wash to prevent cross-contamination. Turning the garments inside out before laundering will reduce abrasion on the exterior of the garment and help maintain a smoother appearance.
- Washing at home may be done with any typical home laundry detergent. Powdered detergents containing "color safe" bleaches such as sodium perborate may be used. Wash on the permanent press cycle with the wash temperature set to warm or hot.
- If stain removal is required, any commercial stain removal product that does not contain hydrogen peroxide is acceptable. Detergent can also be poured directly onto the stain to aid removal. It is possible that heavy stains may not be completely removed, but the presence of a visible stain doesn't necessarily compromise the flame resistant characteristics of a garment.
- Dry on the medium heat setting, but do not overdry the garments to avoid excessive shrinkage. If desired, garments may be ironed on the permanent press setting.
- Products to avoid: Liquid detergents or other products that contain hydrogen peroxide may affect the protective properties of the garment and should not be used. Products such as starch, fabric softener or any other laundry additives, such as dryer sheets, must not be used. Chlorine bleach must never be used on flame resistant garments.
Additional guidance for home laundering can be found here.