What is Dry Cleaning?

Despite its name, drycleaning isn't entirely a dry process. Liquid chemicals called solvents, like perc, remove a variety of stains from fabrics. These solvents are what clean the clothes without the use of water, which is how the term drycleaning came about.

Does drycleaning shorten the life of a garment?

The opposite is true. Drycleaning will actually prolong the life of the garment. This cleaning method is good for your clothes, especially fine fabrics because it removes stains, body salts, oils and even dust. Stains usually set with age, causing embedded dirt in the garment that deteriorate fabrics faster. Insects, like moths, are also attracted to soiled clothes causing further damage.

Should I have all matching pieces drycleaned together?

Yes, the color and sheen will always match when all pieces are cleaned together. It's hard to determine what types of dye and what kind of sizing the manufacturer uses, so it's better to play it safe. It is also recommended to bring in matching sets of bedding and drapery treatments.

What is Wet Cleaning?

Recent advances in technology and garment care have resulted in a machine-based process called "wetcleaning" which uses water as a solvent, instead of the use of perc. Trained professionals using specialized machines and formulated detergents and additives are the only ones who can perform wet cleaning successfully. These programmable machines allow cleaners to customize settings for cleaning different garments and then each item is machine or hand pressed.

What causes buttons to break in the laundry?

There are two main reasons for breakage. One is the way buttons are constructed; many do not handle the heat involved in professional laundering. They are often manufactured with little concern for the garment's care and cleaning needs. Another cause for breakage is that buttons age over time. They will often become brittle and break merely from wear and tear. Off Broadway Cleaners will replace shirt buttons for free, without being asked.

 How long can I expect a shirt to last?

On average, a shirt has a life expectancy of about two years. In other words, the normal shirt should live through 35 to 50 washings which varies depending on the amount of blemishes from everyday wear, the fiber content, the type of fabric and the laundering process.

Do you charge extra for same day service?

No, we do not charge extra but some items require more time and energy to clean, so we try to avoid "specials" if at all possible.

Why did I get a note for consent returned with my garment?

Some stains cannot be removed without the potential for pulling color or changing the look or texture of the garment. Therefore, we need permission in moving forward to do the best that we can to eliminate the stain.    

Common Dry Cleaning Myths:

Club Soda is water and CO2, which can shrink or warp clothes that are meant for drycleaning.

Alcohol  has decent stain removal properties but if used improperly, it can alter dyes and discolor fabrics. Many deodorants contain alcohol and can cause discoloration in fabrics.

Milk, which has been used to remove ink and blood, is a much harder stain to remove.

Lemon juice has been occasionally effective in removing rust stains but can cause oxidation and discoloration that may not be noticeable at first but turns yellow and brown over time.

Soap and water, the best recipe for cleaning many clothes, doesn't work for "dry stains" such as glue, paint, make-up, oil and nail polish which will set permanently if not drycleaned.

Ice may work in rare cases for things like chewing gum but gum dissolves safely and easily in the drycleaning process instead of you having to chip away at pieces of frozen gum.

Nail polish remover, known for removing make-up, contains acetone that dissolves fabrics like acetate or rayon.

Hairspray considered effective with ink stains, contains alcohol and other ingredients with properties that can be dangerous to many dyes and fabrics.

Salt water has been used to remove wine stains but this can often set the stain.

Color safe bleach can still remove color, damage dyes and deteriorate fabrics.  

Tricks of the Trade:

Don't ever rub a spot. Rubbing chafes fabric, especially with the use of paper towels, which can get into the grain of the fabric. Your best bet is to blot a spill with a cloth and let it dry. Fine garments should be taken to a dry cleaner immediately.

Hand washing can shrink your clothes just as your washer can. Water temperature and proper equipment are crucial in maintaining proper shape for your dedicates. Hand washing with soap can also set stains, making it harder to remove by professionals.

There are three main causes of shrinkage: Heat, water and mechanical action. The first time an item is cleaned, washed or dry cleaned, shrinkage can occur, whether the manufacturer pre-shrunk the item or not.