Washing new linen
One of the more peculiar issues that comes up from time to time is when we get a call from the field asking “why when they have washed a load of new linen that the whole load comes out a light green, or light blue, or light yellow color”?
Due to a majority of the new linen used in today’s hospitality environment originating in India, Pakistan, Egypt, and other foreign countries, we must be aware that they will use harsh chemicals to prevent mold and mildew on the fabric, and pesticides to prevent bugs from infiltrating the fabric during the long shipping process in cargo containers.
That being said, if the new linen is washed for the first time in a standard formula with Break, Suds, Destainer, Sour, and Softener it has a tendency to turn a light shade of green, blue, or yellow.
The best way to prevent this from happening is to wash the new linen in a formula with only a suds type product. The alkalinity, and acidity of the other products reacts with the harsh chemicals to cause the color change, by adding nothing more than suds to the new linen formula you can remove those harsh chemicals and prevent the discoloration.
Every facility, whether a hotel, motel, or healthcare, should use this type of new linen formula to prevent the shock of having all of the new linen change color when washing it for the first time.
On a side note, if the facility has washed their new linen and it has changed color all is not lost. By washing the fabric a second time in the appropriate formula based on the fabric type it will remove the discoloration from the fabric.