Are you one of the 60 percent of Americans who wear personal protective equipment (PPE) to work? If you are, then you may be wearing high-visibility clothing that requires special care. After all, you want to ensure this clothing remains bright enough to keep you safe on the job!
Read on to learn how to clean high-visibility clothes.
Why Treat Your High-Visibility Clothing with Care?
One of the primary benefits of high-visibility clothing is that it makes you more obvious at your worksite. If you’re working on a busy highway or directing traffic at night, you want cars to see you.
High-visibility clothing typically has bright tape in yellow or orange on the arms, torso, or knees. The reflective materials will continue to provide an eye-catching level of luminance as long as you care for the clothes properly.
Avoid Crumpling High-Visibility Clothes
Even though you might want to stuff your clothes in the wash, avoid doing this. When you peel off your hi-vis workwear after a long day of work, hang it up. Take a moment to dust or wipe any obvious stains.
By not crumpling your clothing, you’ll cut down on the number of creases that your high-visibility clothes develop. Plus you won’t trap as much mud or debris in your clothing.
Choose the Right Detergent
You’ll want to stick with a mild detergent that won’t scrub away or chip the reflective material. To determine how mild a detergent is, check the pH level. This scale measures the alkalinity or acidity of a solution.
A pH level of seven is considered neutral, but anything higher has more alkaline. While detergents with a higher alkaline level can deal with grease and oils better, they’re also more corrosive. Detergents with pH levels above 11 could be too abrasive for your reflective gear.
Additionally, avoid washing high-visibility clothes with your other regular clothing. Doing so will limit the potential for zippers or buttons to scratch the tape.
Check the Water Temperature
What water temperature setting is your washing machine on? If the temperature is too high, it could cause your reflective tape to lose its luster more quickly. On the other hand, if the water is cold, it won’t have the same deep-cleaning potency.
When it comes to high-visibility clothing cleaning tips, strike a middle ground with water temperature. Keep it lukewarm to be strong enough to tackle stains without damaging the reflective features.
Ultimately, when you’re washing PPE, go easy on it. Try to limit washes in the machine since they will wear down the reflective tape. As much as possible, stick with wiping off grime at the end of the workday.
Follow These High-Visibility Clothing Cleaning Tips
High-visibility clothes are an essential part of workplace safety. With gentle and regular cleaning, you can keep the fluorescent colors vivid for a longer period of time. Try not to send your gear through the washing machine too often, and stick with lukewarm water when you do.
Find more tips to stay safe on the job. Check back for new articles!