Industry News Archive

How Hard Water Affects The Laundry Process

by David Burnham, Edro Dynawash - January 13, 2015.

Water is an essential element in any laundry and the quality of water used in the laundry process can have a direct effect on the appearance and wear life of clothing and textiles.

Many industrial laundries are concerned about the hardness of the water used and because of this problem, more soap and synthetic detergents are required in hard-water laundry areas.

Water is an excellent solvent. As water moves through soil and rock, it dissolves very small amounts of the minerals it comes in contact with and holds them in solution.

The dominant causes of water hardness are calcium and magnesium salts, other dissolved metal salts, bicarbonates, silicates and sulfates.

Hardness in water increases the difficulty of soil and stain removal and can have an adverse effect on some of the chemicals used in the laundry process. It is very important that the laundry operator regularly monitor water hardness and that the operator makes decisions about changing the amount of chemicals required, installing a water softener or recharging an existing water softener.

If the removal of water hardness is not successful it can lead to “graying” in processed textiles and the increased use of chemicals. Graying is caused by re-deposition of soiling from the wash liquor. It is increased by a chemical reaction occurring between the detergent and the hardness salts producing a gray scum.

Water should be checked not just for bacteria, but for other contaminants that can potentially lead to serious problems with quality and production.

Poor management of hardness levels will lead to boiler and equipment breakdowns, exaggerated fuel costs, lost production and graying caused by the unremoved hardness neutralizing the detergent.

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CaterSafe Ireland

CaterSafe is an established, Irish owned company, offering the complete solution for all your cleaning, hygiene, laundry and janitorial needs. We supply a comprehensive range of reputable products at keen prices to meet all your cleaning and detergent needs.

Serving a wide range of customers in the following sectors: Hospitals & Nursing Homes, Schools & Colleges, Bars & Restaurants, Commercial and Institutional Catering, Hotels & Hospitality, OPL & Commercial Laundries.

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