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Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Caring for your clothes- Laundry Care Symbols

If you have ever been mystified by the laundry care symbols in your clothes, here is Equa’s comprehensive guide to understanding what these symbols mean.

This symbol tells you that the item can be machine washed. It will also indicate the maximum temperature it can be washed at, usually indicated in degrees centigrade (°C) or with dots.

1 dot=30°C 2 dots=40°C 3 dots=50°C 4 dots=60°C 5 dots=70°C

At Equa we recommend washing your garments at 30°C.The majority of energy used in a washing machine comes from heating the water. By reducing the temperature you will be saving energy.

If you are concerned that your clothes will not be cleaned properly at a lower temperature, look for a cold water detergent. Washing at a lower temperature will also protect your clothing as hot water can shrink, damage the fabric and fade your clothes.

This means the item is too delicate for the washing machine and should be washed by hand. Some washing machines have a hand wash cycle that would be suitable.

This indicates that the item of clothing must not be washed in water, not even hand washed. This symbol would be accompanied by a dry cleaning symbol.

DRY CLEANThis is the standard dry cleaning symbol.There are many variations that your dry cleaner will understand.

Items with the delicate symbols should be washed separately on the delicate cycle, as shown by the line under the machine wash symbol. You can even put items such as lingerie in a pillow case so that the fastenings do not snag other items.

You may bleach these items with any type of laundry bleach. Do be careful to follow instructions as too much bleach can destroy your garments.

Do not use any type of bleach on these items, as it would damage them irreparably.

Do not use any bleach that contains chlorine. You can find ‘colour fast bleach’ which does not contain chlorine easily. This is also a better eco option that traditional bleach.

This symbol indicates the garment can be tumble dried. The dot in the centre indicates the maximum heat: 1 dot for low heat, 2 dots for medium and 3 for high.

This indicates the item cannot be dried in a tumble dry and needs to be air dried. Usually there is an accompanying symbol that tells you the best method to air dry.

HANG TO DRY: hang on a clothing line, drying rack or hanger to dry

DRY FLAT: shape and lay the item flat to dry, works best if placed on a folded towel.

DRIP DRY: do not shape or wring out too vigorously and allow to drip dry

DO NOT WRING: this item is delicate and will be misshapen if wrung out, allow to drip dry

DRY IN THE SHADE: do not dry in direct sunlight as it might fade the garment

This indicates that you can iron your garment. Once again if there is a dot this indicates the temperature setting. 1 dot for low setting, 2 for medium and 3 for high.

This garment cannot be ironed. It will either need to be pressed professionally or can simply be hung up as soon as it comes out of the washing machine allowing the creases to fall out as it dries.

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