Nowadays, perhaps more than ever, our employers are asking us to perform more and more tasks during the workday in the same amount of time that we normally work. Commercial laundry machine operators in institutional laundry facilities are no different. They have fixed shifts, and very little or no opportunity at all to work overtime, considering budget restraints continue to get tighter and tighter.
Laundry operators have many steps to take in the laundry operations cycle in order to ensure that the facility’s linens are not only clean, but will last a long time. Many operators take shortcuts by eliminating one or two of the steps that they feel may not be as important in the cycle of a laundry operation. One critical step that many operators are overlooking is prespotting.
Prespotting is the step that has to be done after the linen has been sorted, and before the linens go into the laundry machine for the wash cycle. This step allows the operators to inspect each piece of linen for spots such as makeup, medicinal stains, incontinence stains, etc. There are a variety of prespotters that are to be used depending on the type of soil that is identified. Most prespotters are in ready-to-use form in a spray bottle, and are sprayed directly onto the soil prior to placing the linen into the machine for the wash cycle.
So what if prespotters are not used? Well, by ignoring soils on linens before you put them into the machine you are creating multiple problems. Stains often become permanent if overlooked, once they go through a wash cycle. The only way to remove the stains at that point is by running a “reclaim” cycle, which is a super-concentrated dose of chemicals in a modified cycle that is a last resort for set in stains. This creates more of an expense for the facility. Either way, if prespotting is ignored, or if reclaim is used, it increases costs exponentially due to shortened linen life, and unnecessary linen replacement. If you want an efficient operation to minimize extra expenses, don’t ignore the prespotting!
Andy Gail is the Associate Product Manager – Disinfectants, Insecticides, Laundry and Warewashing for the Betco Corporation. He is driven to ensure a cleaner more sustainable future through products, and programs that you inspire and we innovate. When not disinfecting or changing loads of laundry, Andy enjoys spending time with friends and traveling. Click here to contact Andy directly.