Tips for Prolonging the Useful Life of Hotel Linens

Hotel Laundry | Sep 21, 2018 8:35:00 PM

For any hotel, providing clean linens can quickly become very expensive. Not just keeping linens clean enough to satisfy guests, but also the cost of replacing worn or aged linens as they become unacceptable for use.

Because of how expensive it can be to replace them, it is a good idea to keep your existing linens in top condition for as long as possible. Carefully managing how hotel linens are washed is a key part of ensuring a longer useful life.

To help with this, we’ve assembled a list of tips that hoteliers can use to make sure that their linens are cleaned properly and will last for longer.

Tip #1: Keep an Appropriate Level of Linens in Stock

When a hotel does not have enough linens on hand to keep customers comfortably supplied with clean linens, several things can happen, including:

  • Running out of Linens for Guests. If there are not enough linens on hand to circulate for customers, then there is the very real risk of running out of linens completely during a period of high occupancy or use of linens by guests.
  • Increased Labor Costs for Laundry. When there aren’t enough linens to go around, your hotel’s in-house laundry staff will have to process loads as quickly as possible after the linens become soiled so that said linens can be returned to circulation. This leads to more labor being dedicated to turning around laundry ASAP, increasing costs.
  • Faster Wear and Tear of Linens. Another consequence of having too few linens for your hotel is that the frequent rewashing of linens can lead to them wearing out faster. This shortens the useful life of your linens, leading to a need to replace them much faster than you would have to otherwise.

How many linens is enough to avoid the above problems? According to the American Resort Development Association, “Recommended inventory levels should be at 2.5 to 3 par.” In other words, that’s one set of linens for use, one for storage, and one that can be in the wash for each room. This way, there’s less pressure on your laundry operation to work longer hours in case linens are dirtied in the off-hours.

Tip #2: Check if New Linens Are Compatible with Your Old Linen’s Wash Instructions

In many cases, hotels stick with the same few vendors for their linen needs, and order identical products for as long as possible. However, things happen that may prevent your hotel from being able to get the same linens over and over again.

For example, a vendor might go out of business, their suppliers might go out of business, product lines might get updated, or your hotel may find a new vendor that offers a better deal for linens that saves money.

Whatever the reason, your hotel may have to start ordering linens that are not identical to the ones you currently have. When this happens, it is important to review the wash instructions for the new linens to see if they are compatible with the ones for your existing linens. Most of the time, if you’re ordering similar products made from similar materials, they should have nearly identical washing instructions, but it is often better to make sure of this before placing a large order.

By checking the wash instructions for linens, you can avoid accidentally using a wash process that could end up damaging linens.

Tip #3: Upgrading Laundry Equipment

Part of the reason why repeated washings cause linens to wear out is that traditional commercial laundry machines rely on four things to get linens clean:

  • Temperature
  • Chemistry
  • Mechanical Action
  • Time

The more intense the temperature of the wash, the harsher the chemicals used, the rougher the mechanical action, and the longer the wash process takes, the more wear and tear is applied to linens. Traditional laundry machines rely on a brute force approach to cleaning and sanitizing fabrics, which means longer wash cycles with higher temperatures and chemical concentrations. Combined with a rough drop and slop motion during the wash, and it’s easy to see how an older commercial laundry machine can wear out your hotel’s delicate linens.

However, the traditional cleaning system that relies on harsh chemicals and hot water is no longer the only way to get linens clean. Now, there is an alternative to washing systems that rely on water as the primary cleaning medium: Hydrofinity low-water washing systems.

With a Hydrofinity system, revolutionary XOrbs absorb stains and contaminants from linens sort of like a sponge absorbs water. The stains are physically trapped inside the XOrbs and carried away safely from linens so that they do not simply redeposit elsewhere in the laundry load.

Hydrofinity systems offer several key advantages over traditional aqueous washing systems that help prolong the useful life of linens, including:

  • Lower Wash Temperatures. The XOrbs can absorb stains and contaminants even at lower temperatures. This eliminates the need to use high temperature water that can damage delicate linens.
  • Reduced Chemicals in the Wash. A Hydrofinity washing machine can clean linens with half the chemical of a traditional, water based washing machine. This spares linens exposure to harsh chemicals that can cause excessive wear.
  • Gentler Mechanical Action. Bulky linen items in a traditional laundry machine have nothing to support their weight in the wash, leading to extra strain. The Hydrofinity system provides support for the weight of bulky linens, reducing strain.

Learn more about how you can prolong the useful life of linens by contacting Hydrofinity today!

Topics: Hotel Laundry

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