Category Archives: Did You Know

Why Does My Front-Load Washer Smell?

A front-load washing machine is a highly efficient way to do your laundry. Compared to the top-load washer, the front-load design can clean your clothes with less water and less detergent. Unfortunately, most people are not accustomed to such a machine, and this results in a bad smell that infects their laundry.

The problem is that people try to use the same amount of detergent and other products that they needed to use in their top-loaders. Since there is far less water to rinse these products away, a portion of them are left behind and gather as a sludge-like residue on the walls of your washer. Combined with the warm, moist environment of your machine, it turns into a spawning ground for mold, mildew, and bacteria.

The simple solution is to make sure you aren’t using more detergent than you need to, and to seek out products that identify themselves as safe for use with efficient machines. Meanwhile, if you end up with smelly stains on some of your more delicate garments, bring them to Bellevue Dry Cleaning.

When You Wash Your Chapstick

Occasionally, a stick of chapstick ends up in your pocket when you run your laundry through the dryer. When this happens, you will want to address the resulting mess as quickly as you can.

  1. Inspect your washer and dryer to remove any chapsticks or waxy residues that may be left behind. Scrub the inside of your washer with a bit of detergent and a wash rag. To clean the dryer, wet some rags and set the dryer on a high heat for about five minutes, then wipe the stains away with a rag dipped in white distilled vinegar.
  2. Scrape any visible wax off of your clothing with a spoon or dull knife.
  3. Treat every stained spot of your clothing with an enzyme-based stain remover, or a heavy-duty laundry detergent that has enough enzymes to penetrate an oily residue. Use your fingers to work the washing agent into the stain and let it sit for a minimum of thirty minutes.
  4. 21Wash the stained clothing again in the warmest water that it can safely be washed in. Check to assure that the stain is no longer visible before running it through the dryer.

Should you end up with a chapstick stain on a garment that cannot be washed by conventional means, bring it to Bellevue Dry Cleaning.

Beating the Beet Stain

Beet juice has strong, red pigmentation that can mar the appearance of your clothing. If you get beet juice on your fabric, take the following steps to avoid any lasting stains:

  1. Use a spoon or dull knife to remove any excess beet.
  2. Soak a piece of white bread in water and place it on the stained area. The bread will absorb the beet juice. Replace the bread until it stops soaking up color.
  3. Rinse the stained area with cold water.
  4. If you have a stain remover stick, gel, or spray, this is the time to use it. Apply it to the stain and let it stand for a minimum of five minutes.
  5. If the garment can be safely bleached, let it soak in an appropriate amount of bleach for thirty minutes. If the garment cannot be used with bleach, try allowing cold water to slowly drip over the stained area over the sink for a few hours.

In the event that you get beet stains on a garment that you are unable to wash with conventional means, bring it to Bellevue Dry Cleaning.

Advanced Laundry Sorting

Most people know to sort their white and colored laundry. However, there are other ways you can benefit from separating your washables. Particularly if you have a large family that produces a lot of laundry, you should consider the following sorting tips:

  • Reds and Bright Colors: Bright colors, reds in particular, are prone to lose their color and bleed over your other fabrics. If there is any risk of this, try putting all of your reds or other bright clothing with like colors in a separate load.
  • Towels: The problem with towels is that they produce a lot of lint, which sticks to other fabric. Try washing them by themselves, or with blankets, robes, and similar items. Make sure that these items are colorfast.
  • Specialty Items: Some items have special needs and should be washed separately. Check your tags to identify any specialty items.
  • Sorting by Owner: Families may benefit by washing all of the colorfast items of a single family member together. So long as these items have no special needs, this can be a great way to save time in sorting your family’s laundry.

If you have anything that cannot be sorted in among the rest of your laundry, bring it to our Bellevue dry cleaning service.

Should I Wash New Clothes?

Some people like to give their new clothing a “pre-wearing wash” before they put them on for the first time. As strange as it may sound, there is in fact a lot of merit to this practice. Many of the garments you buy have additives in them that can give sensitive skin dermatitis. Further, the excessive dyes found in some of your colored clothing might stain your skin or other fabrics they come into contact with.

If you just bought underwear or a bathing suit, you should take particular care to wash them before you use them for the first time. Though it is rare, there is some small risk that another shopper may have tried these garments on and spread lice or scabies to them. Rinse such items in as hot a temperature of water as you can safely wash them in, then hang them up to dry.

If you just purchased a garment that is dry clean only, you can count on Bellevue Dry Cleaning for all of your laundering needs.

Removing Barbecue Sauce Stains

Barbecue sauce represents a bit of a challenge when it stains your clothing. If allowed to dry, it can be almost impossible to get out. Therefore, when your summer barbecue leaves an impression on your clothes, don’t waste any time to follow these simple laundering steps:

  1. Scrape away as much of the sauce as you can with a dull knife or a spoon. This will keep the sauce from spreading further during the coming steps.
  2. Allow cold water to run through the back of the stain for several minutes, forcing the sauce out the way it came. Avoid using hot water, as this can set the stain.
  3. Rub liquid laundry detergent into the stained area,23 working it gently with your fingers. Once it is soaked through, allow it to sit for ten minutes and then rinse it out thoroughly with room temperature water.
  4. If you can safely use bleach on the fabric, apply a mild bleach to the area with a sponge. Rinse well.
  5. Repeat steps three and four until you see no more sign of the stain. If you no longer see any progress, but the stain remains, rub in liquid laundry detergent and soak it in warm water for thirty minutes and rinse. Wash the clothing as normal, making sure that the barbecue sauce is completely gone before drying it.

If you get barbecue sauce on a garment that cannot be safely washed using these steps, bring it down to Bellevue Dry Cleaning to have it removed safely and effectively.

Can I Wash a Comforter in a Machine?

A lot of comforters can be washed normally in a regular washing machine. However, others are not as easy to get clean. Some of them are simply too large to fit into your machine, while others are too fragile. Your comforter’s tag should tell you whether or not it can be safely washed in your machine.

If you need to hand wash your comforter, start by spreading it out over the floor and vacuuming it off, front and back, with a dust attachment. You should then fill your bathtub or a similar large vessel with enough warm water to fully submerge the comforter. Add some liquid detergent and agitate the water. Scrub at any stained areas, then drain away the soapy water. Replace the water with clean water to rinse away the soap, draining and repeating as many times as is needed. Once you are confident that the soap is gone, hang up your comforter on a line to let it dry.

If there are portions of your comforter that cannot get wet, bring it to Bellevue Dry Cleaning.

The Merits of Setting a Laundry Day

There is a wisdom to keeping to the old notion that you should set aside a particular day every week for your laundry. Firstly, establishing a routine makes you less likely to forget to wash a load. This saves you from the occasional marathon clothes-washing, which is a huge drain on your time and energy. If you live with a large family, setting a hard weekly deadline also makes it more likely that dirty clothes will wind up in the hamper, sparing you the weekly hunt for stray socks and discarded shirts.

Simultaneously, a once-a-week schedule should be sufficient to allow for a proper build-up of dirty laundry; as counterintuitive as it may be, the practice of doing small loads throughout the week is not doing your clothing any favors. Clothes washed in a medium or large load will actually come out cleaner than those washed in a small one.

When it comes time to wash clothing that cannot be safely cleaned in your own machine, bring it down to Bellevue Dry Cleaning.

Removing Your Syrup Stains

If you get to a syrup stain quick enough, you may be able to get the bulk of it out with nothing but water. The longer you wait, though, the harder it’s going to be. When this happens, consider the following tips:

  1. Rinse the stain thoroughly with cold water.
  2. Rub the stain gently with liquid detergent and let it stand for five minutes. Rinse the detergent out through the back of the stain with as hot a temperature of water as can be safely used on the fabric.
  3. Wash the garment normally. Check the stain before drying, and repeat the above steps if you see any signs of syrup. Do not dry until you are confident that the stain has been removed.

Should you get syrup on any garments that cannot be safely laundered by conventional means, bring them in to our Bellevue Dry Cleaners.

Getting Pollen Out of Your Clothes

When pollen gets rubbed into your clothing, it can create a very stubborn stain. Fortunately, these stains are easy to remove if you know how to do it properly.

  1. Begin by shaking out as much of the pollen as you can. If the fabric isn’t particularly fragile, consider applying tape to the stained area and gently lifting it away to remove excess particles.
  2. Using cold water, rinse the fabric through the back of the stain.
  3. If the stain remains after you are done rinsing, let it soak in cold water for thirty minutes.
  4. Repeat steps two and three until you stop seeing improvement.
  5. Wash the garment, using as hot a water as is safe for the fabric in question.
  6. Check the stain before drying. If you still see pollen, repeat the above steps. Do not dry the fabric while there is still pollen visible, as this can bake the stain into the clothing so that it is even more difficult to remove.

When you get pollen stains on a fabric that cannot be safely washed in a conventional machine, bring it to Bellevue Dry Cleaning.