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Thomas Textiles

Care Instructions

Bath LinenBedding
  • How to wash towels
    • To keep your towels in optimum condition it is important that you always follow the washing instructions as set out on the care label sewn into the towel.

      • Use the recommended water temperature and wash cycle
      • Do not dry clean
      • Always wash deep or bright colours separately

      Almost all commercial washing powders on the market contain optical brightening agents (OBA’s) which are designed to keep whites looking white. However, they may also fade some dyed colours, especially lighter dyed shades.

      This can be minimised by following the manufacturers washing instructions.

      However, to ensure that no fading occurs and that your towels remain bright and vibrant, try to use a detergent that does not contain OBA’s and wash towels separately.

      Do not use detergents or chemicals which contain chlorine or other bleaching agents.

      Do not under or overload your washing machine and use the manufacturers recommended amount of detergent. The chemicals in detergents are concentrated and can cause discolouration if too much is used. We do not recommend the use of bleach as it can aid in chemical degradation of the cotton fibre. Unfortunately many detergents contain bleach in one of its many forms.

      It is acceptable to use fabric softeners, however softeners are fibre lubricants and overuse can cause the towel to become super saturated. This will reduce the ability of the towel to absorb water and give the towel a greasy handle. Overuse of fabric softener increases the likelihood of pulled pile threads appearing.

      The following recommendations will help in achieving the service life you would expect from your quality product;

      1. Excessive temperatures in both washing and drying can result in high shrinkage levels and increased chemical action. We recommend laundering temperatures be kept as low as practically possible. Over drying can result in degradation and resulting in a harsh handle.
      2. Both overloading and under loading machines will reduce wash efficiency and increase mechanical ware on towelling, resulting in worn edges.
      3. Softeners can also cause a discolouration of white products during initial launderings. One or two launderings without softener will return the product to its original white.

      Cleaners & cleaning agents
      Some cleaning items used in the bathroom can damage your towels resulting in reduced strength and may affect the colour. If your towel does come into contact with these products, you may minimise the effects by gently washing the affected area immediately with COLD water before laundering in the recommended way. Vinegar can also stop the action that bleaches can have on cotton.

      Retaining ‘fluffiness’
      Tumble drying is the preferred method of drying for towels as this will assist in ‘fluffing’ the pile. Flatwork ironers are not recommended as they tend to flatten the pile.

      Pulled threads
      Most towels are woven and not knitted, so pulled threads should be snipped off with a pair of sharp scissors. The towel will not run or unravel, and this will not be detrimental to the life of the product.

      Colour variation
      As towels are dyed in batches, some slight variations in colour may occur between different batches of towels. Under normal circumstances this colour variation will not be noticeable.

      Temperatures greater than 60 degrees centigrade during washing can reduce colour fastness for some dyed product, and is not recommended. In addition, chemicals used in pools such as chlorine can affect the colour fastness, so towels should be rinsed as soon as possible after use.

      Remember – any towel which has not been cared for with attention to the recommended washing instructions, or which has been laundered over a long period of time with detergents containing optical brightening agents, may have altered in colour and appearance. Bear this in mind when matching colours with new towels.

  • How to wash new towels
      1. Always launder towels before using them for the first time.
      2. During the first wash, add one half to 1 cup of white vinegar to the wash water. This will help set the dyes and result in increased colourfast.
      3. Use less detergent than is normally recommended – about half is generally sufficient.
      4. Do not use bleach.
      5. NEVER USE FABRIC SOFTENERS in the first wash as they will decrease the towels ability to absorb water. Fabric softener also enables pulled threads.
  • Am I putting bleach in my wash?
    • It is quite possible that you are adding bleach in your wash without knowing it. Bleach comes in a number of forms, and has similar properties. Many commercially available laundry detergents contain bleaches without being labelled specifically.

      Some pre wash water treatments also contain bleach. You may be doubling up the dose of bleach without even adding bleach to your wash.

      Names to look for;

      • Sodium Percarbonate
      • Hydrogen Peroxide
      • Sodium Carbonate
      • Sodium Carbonate Peroxyhydrate
      • Sodium Hypochlorite

      The properties of Sodium Hypochlorite bleach that make it effective for removing stains also result in cumulative damage to organic fibres such as cotton, and the useful lifespan of these materials will be shortened with regular bleaching. The Sodium Hydroxide that is also found in many bleaches causes fibre degrading organics fibres in the presence of humidity.

      It is best to consult with your chemical supplier and laundry system designer for the best outcomes.

  • How to wash a quilt / doona
    • All of the quilts / doonas we carry can be machine washed. Ensure that the machine you use is large enough to comfortably launder the item. If you need to squeeze the item into the machine, it is likely you will not get a thorough wash. Use a mild detergent, one that is suitable for woollens.

      A warm tumble dry, until completely dry. Drying time is affected by the type of fill. A polyester filled quilt / doona will take a relatively short time to dry, where a feather down quilt / doona will take longer.

      It is better to wash a feather down quilt / doona than to have it dry cleaned. Dry cleaning may remove necessary fat & oils which can lower resiliency of down and possibly make the down more brittle.

  • What detergent should you use with your quilt / doona?
    • You should always use an unscented, liquid based, colour free detergent to wash your quilt / doona and refrain from using any detergents that contain a fabric softener. Fabric softeners can damage the fibres of the fill and aid in fibre migration, so should be avoided.

      A detergent that is suitable for woollens is a good choice.

      Avoid using bleach on your quilt / doona. Bleach (in one of its many forms) will lessen the life of your quilt / doona more than it will aid in washing it.

  • Tips for sheets
      1. Use a gentle wash cycle and avoid using bleach to protect linens
      2. Use a mattress protector between mattresses and sheets to extend the life of both
      3. Pillow protectors can be bought and used to prevent frequent laundering of pillows
  • How to wash sheets
    • The life of the product will increase if during the wash cycle the temperature of the water is kept as low as practicable. Generally, chemical actions are increased with the increase in temperature and could possibly aid in chemical degradation of the product.

      Washing of new products prior to first use should be done in water and detergent with adequate rinsing and no softener in the final rinse, as water alone may contain metallic ions which could discolour dyed products or cause yellowing of whites.

      Temperatures greater than 60 degrees celsius during washing can reduce colour fastness for some dyed products and is not recommended.

      Product shrinkage can increase if one or both washing and drying temperatures are too high. For example – sheeting shrinkages can increase above the currently accepted 10% warp and weft.

      Whatever the type of detergent or chemical used, powder / liquid, we suggest that it should be pre-dissolved or mixed before addition of the soiled linen.

      The wash cycle times required are essential for both the quality and efficiency of the wash and will depend on a number of factors;

      1. Washer design and speed
      2. Size of water inlets and pressure available
      3. Size of dump valves or outlets
      4. Degree of loading
      5. Soil conditions
      6. Chemical additions and mixing

      We do not recommend the use of bleach as it can aid chemical degradation of the cotton fibre and discolouration of the polyester fibre. However, if loss of whiteness does occur over a period of time with white sheeting products, the use of bleach including peroxide, chlorine or per borate based compounds can be used with reasonable care, but only to ‘lift’ that whiteness (hydrogen peroxide is the preferred option as it is more environmentally friendly). It is recommended that this should be done say, once every 10-20 washes, depending on the degree of ‘yellowing’.

      Rinsing should be repeated several times to remove all suspended soils, soaps, detergents and alkali. Inadequate rinsing will reduce the life of the product. Inadequate rinsing can leave bleaching agents to continue to act on the fibres.

      After washing, as much water as possible should be removed from the products either by hydro-extraction or by using a membrane press. This will result in reduce drying time and less energy costs.

      Cotton is attacked by fungi and bacteria. Mildews for example, will feed on cotton fabric, rotting and weakening the material and cause bad odours. Mildews and bacteria will flourish on cotton under hot, moist conditions.

      If disinfection of the soiled linen is required then normally wash temperatures should exceed 70 degrees celsius for a period of no less than 10 minutes. We recommend a chemical bacteriostatic be used in preference to the higher temperature.

      Many brands of detergents contain optical brighteners which can affect the shade of dyed or tinted products, particularly pastel shades and should be avoided it at all possible. The use of optical whiteners should be for white products only and added to the final rinse. We recommend the use of non-optical detergents.

  • How to wash a bedspread
    • To best care for your bedspread, periodic laundering is advised.

      We suggest that you take a trip to a local laundry where large machines are available (both for washing and drying).

      Ensure that the capacity of the machine you are washing in is sufficient to efficiently wash the bedspread. If you fill the machine with one bedspread, the laundering will be ineffective.

      Once the bedspread has been washed and extracted, you can dry it in a tumble dryer. Again, ensure that the dryer is large enough for proper tumble action to take place.

  • How to care for your Pillows
    • When you purchase a pillow we recommend that you also purchase a pillow protector in the correct size to match your pillow. The pillow protector offers an additional barrier against dirt and oil and will lessen the need for pillow cleaning. Having at least 2 pillow protectors per pillow will allow you to have one in the wash while the other is being used on the pillow. These protectors are available in inexpensive spun bonded fabric or cotton quilted for a little more.

      Pillows can be machine washed but their treatment depends upon the fill and the outer casing.

      Laundering of pillows

      Synthetic polyester filled pillows;

      1. Gentle machine wash and a warm tumble dry
      2. Dry thoroughly before reuse

      Feather and down pillows;

      1. Gentle machine wash and a warm tumble dry. Heat will destroy this fibre, so low heat is a must. It may take a long time to dry, but that is better than ruining it.
      2. A detergent designed for wool is most suitable
  • How to care for Mattress Protectors
    • The small investment of a mattress protector can extend the life of your mattress by reducing staining and excessive wear. They are easily washable, providing additional hygiene, and add to your guests sleeping comfort by providing a layer of softness.

      Commercial laundering of mattress protectors

      1. Care must be taken to fill the machine to optimal capacity. Over filling will lead to poor washing outcomes and under filling can lead to damage of the product.
      2. Warm wash, rinse well, gentle spin, warm dry
      3. Do not iron & do not dry clean
      4. Extreme care needs to be taken when adding bleach to aid in keeping your protectors white. Many, if not all detergents already contain bleach in one term or another. Over use of bleach will reduce the life of your protectors
  • Am I putting bleach in my wash?
    • It is quite possible that you are adding bleach in your wash without knowing it. Bleach comes in a number of forms, and has similar properties. Many commercially available laundry detergents contain bleaches without being labelled specifically.

      Some pre wash water treatments also contain bleach. You may be doubling up the dose of bleach without even adding bleach to your wash.

      Names to look for;

      • Sodium Percarbonate
      • Hydrogen Peroxide
      • Sodium Carbonate
      • Sodium Carbonate Peroxyhydrate
      • Sodium Hypochlorite

      The properties of Sodium Hypochlorite bleach that make it effective for removing stains also result in cumulative damage to organic fibres such as cotton, and the useful lifespan of these materials will be shortened with regular bleaching. The Sodium Hydroxide that is also found in many bleaches causes fibre degrading organics fibres in the presence of humidity.

      Sheets and towels that rip easily demonstrate the costs of laundering with bleach. Hot water increases the activity of the bleach, owing to the thermal decomposition of Hypochlorite which untimely generates environmentally undesirable chlorate.

      It is best to consult with your chemical supplier and laundry system designer for the best outcomes.

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