Spring is when everyone eagerly gets back outside to walk, run, exercise and enjoy spring sports. During the spring sports seasons, uniforms go through all the paces of the players who wear them, which means they get very dirty. To keep uniforms looking their best (at least at the start of the game) it’s important to clean them properly to remove sweat, dirt and other stains.
Preventing dye bleeding
The usual materials used to make sports uniforms are synthetic and can include spandex, nylon, polyester or a combination of fibers. While the materials make the uniforms comfortable, breathable and appealing, it also makes them susceptible to dye bleeding when someone cleans them. To avoid colors running together and ruining the uniform, you need to follow the care instructions properly. Most uniforms with water-soluble dyes must be washed with cold water to prevent dye fading or transfer. While the colors remain safe to wash in cold water, using higher temperatures can lead to bleeding. If you follow the care instructions and wash at the recommended temperature only to experience dye bleeding in the uniform, contact the manufacturer and return the garment for a suitable replacement.
General tips for uniform care
Along with washing at the proper temperature to prevent dye bleeding, there are other things you can do to keep athletic uniforms looking clean and in good condition. These include:
- Read the label – Follow the care label for cleaning and if you experience issues with laundering, consult a professional cleaner.
- Test for colorfastness – Even if you’re following the label, it’s a good idea to test for colorfastness prior to washing the item to make sure it doesn’t bleed onto other clothing.
- Treat stains before washing – As uniforms usually require cold-water washing, you can’t rely on hot water to remove mud and grass stains and need to treat them before washing.
- Dry at low temperature – Drying athletic uniforms at a high temperature can cause shrinking and permanent wrinkles. Any synthetics with lamination require air-drying.
- Don’t soak – Due to the synthetic materials used in uniforms, they can’t be soaked or left damp for an extended period as this can damage the fibers or lead to dye bleed.
- Iron correctly – If the uniform comes out of the dryer or off the line with wrinkles, iron at a low temperature setting to avoid melting the material or causing permanent marks.
If you’re ever in doubt about how to clean your athletic uniforms, trust the cleaning expertise of Embassy Cleaners to keep your clothing looking and feeling great.