Soapy Says


Soapy Says:

Here are some common issues and helpful hints for solving them! This can be downloaded as a PDF and printed for your reference.

Drycleaning Solutions

High Filter Pressure

Check for:

-Blocked or restricted outlet valve
-Moisture swelling cartridge filter paper
-Solvent flow rate too high
-Blocked discs-remove and replace or clean
-Cartridges used beyond manufactures rating
-Improper addition of sizing-not dissolved prior to contacting filter
-Improper cartridge or disc size-too small


Check for:

-Excess water in system-check for leaks

-Hot solvent-greater than 85˚F
-Oversized loads
-Long extraction times-do not exceed 1.5 minutes for Perc
-Loading garments into a hot machine or reclaimer
-Loading damp/wet or wrinkled garments into DC unit
-Excessive wet-side prespotting
-Overloading nets
-Garments air dried and not tumbled


Check for:

-Excessive moisture in system-check for leaks
-Solvent temperature too high (Perc only)
-Hot dryer (tumbler) or reclaimer
-Drying too long at High temperatures-140˚F plus
-Relaxation of fibers previously under tension
-Excessive mechanical action due to low solvent level(s)
-Poor classification

Lint and static

Check for:

-Insufficient detergent or detergent not being correctly used
-Excessive extraction times-no longer than 1.5 minutes for Perc
-Not using water-based detergents
-Drying at too high of a temperature and/or drying too long
-Clogged or defective lint screens or bags that impede air flow
-Solvent levels too low
-Poor garment classification – Heavy weight garments with light weight garments

Poor Cleaning

Check for:

-Under using detergent
-Poor garment classification
-Slow solvent flow due to high filter pressure/clogged button trap/pump strainer
-Low solvent levels (<0.5 gallon/pound)
-Short cleaning cycles


Check for:

-Overloading DC unit
-Improper detergent use: injection rate too low
-Low solvent levels
-Solvent contaminated with high solids (NVR)-increase distillation
-Poor filtration
-Improper pre-spotting


Check for:

-Colored solvent due to dye bleeding
-High solvent NVR-increase distillation
-Improper pre-spotting-dye transfer

Color Loss

Check for:

-Bleeding of dyes from some fiber/dye combinations-test garment prior to cleaning.
-Dye bleeders require special handling
-Hot Solvent (>85°F)
-Improper prespotting-test prior to using spotting chemicals
-Rubbing garment areas excessively with spatula or finger nail
-Garments containing leather trim, etc. should be tested for potential dye loss

Dull Colors

Check for:

-Detergent levels low or improper detergent use
-Poor filtration-spent filters decrease solvent flow
-High Solvent NVR-increase solvent distillation

Dirty Solvent

Check for:

-High NVR-increase distillation
-Inadequate filtration-check filters for maintenance
-Spent carbon-cartridge filters- used past rated capacity

Water in Solvent

Check for:

-Leaking solvent heat exchangers
-Faulty water separator(s)
-Drycleaning wet garments: heavy prespotting
-Condensation in base tanks


Check for:

-Use of solvent soluble dyes in fabrics Hot solvent
-Prolonged cleaning cycle
-Improper prespotting


Check for:

-Dirty or fouled water separator-clean weekly
-Low distillation rate-high NVR
-Excessive wet lint on condensing coil.
-Bacterial bloom in hydrocarbon solvent due to poor daily maintenance and/or low distillation rate
-Fishy organic amines from spotting chemicals or breakdown of permanent press finishes – add acetic acid to still
-Rotten egg from sulfur contamination of activated carbon found in some cartridge filters
-Oily burnt odor from sill boil over or improper steam stripping of still residue – remove still residue daily

Low Filter Pressure

Check for:

-Restricted solvent outlet valve (tank or drum).
-Restricted filter inlet valve.
-Worn or plugged pump rotors/valves. Low solvent levels in tanks.
-Malfunctioning level controls.
-Open tank inlet valve.