Summer Stain Solutions (Conclusion)


(Photo: ©Ingram Publishing)

Martin L. Young Jr. |

The scoop on ice cream: use plenty of patience

CONCORD, N.C. — Here we are back in the grasp of warm weather!

After being cooped up, the cookout, picnic and barbecue are all excuses to gather outside and eat some messy food. Hot dogs, hamburgers, steaks, ribs, ice cream or even “frogmore stew” — it’s all good.

But somebody has to deal with the drips and dribbles. That person is the professional cleaner.

Each summer stain needs to be solved. It is up to you to provide that solution. These gatherings produce stains that cover the entire spectrum: solvent-soluble, water-soluble, chemically soluble and insoluble.

Solvent-soluble stains normally come out in the drycleaning process, chemically soluble stains are usually broken down with dry-side pre-spotting, and insoluble stains are removed with lubrication and mechanical action.

This column focuses on the stains that require wet-side supplemental stain removal. It can also be used as a broad overview. I spotlighted a tannin stain and a combination stain in Part One, and now a protein stain is the focus here.

Ice cream is a staple of summer. There are always leaks and drips. That is good for the cleaner.


Ice cream can create a mess on a warm day. Dripping down the front of a blouse or onto the front of a pair of dress pants can challenge any cleaner and spotter.

The protocol for a protein stain is much the same as a tannin stain, only the chemical tool is based on alkali rather than acid pH. If the stain has “aged,” you should lightly fog the stain to moisten and heat it and then apply an enzyme digester.

Set the garment aside for a few minutes and come back to it at your convenience. If the stain is fresh, you can proceed to flush the stain over the vacuum nose of the board, then apply NSD and light mechanical action over the solid portion of the board.

Place the stain over the vacuum nose and flush with steam. If a hint of the stain remains, apply your protein remover over the solid portion of the board and use light mechanical action.

Place the stain over the vacuum nose and flush with steam; you should repeat this step until the stain is fully removed.

Patience is your greatest asset in stain removal. When you consistently work through your progressions of chemical tools, you will remove a far greater number of stains with minimum risk of mistakes and damage.

To read Part One, go HERE.

About the author

Martin L. Young Jr.

Industry Consultant and Trainer

Martin L. Young Jr. has been an industry consultant and trainer for 20 years, and a member of various stakeholder groups on environmental issues. He is a past president of the North Carolina Association of Launderers & Cleaners (NCALC). He grew up in his parents’ plant in Concord, N.C., Young Cleaners, which he operates to this day. Contact him by phone at 704-786-3011, or via e-mail at [email protected].


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