Since our last post about mediocre holiday gifts didn’t exactly drive up sales – it’s OK, we expected that; people prefer jewelry and electronics to cleaning supplies – we needed something to keep our microfiber elves busy. This little project kept them busy for hours! So, without further ado, we present to you our Microfiber Christmas Tree!!
We know that you already know that Microfiber is the best way on earth to make your home sparkle. Impress your guests this holiday season with Microfiber Wholesale’s line of dusters, towels and mops. Merry Christmas!
In sales, the worst thing you can hear is the word no. Would you like to buy a microfiber towel? No. Since I lack the tenacity that good sales people have, that’s usually the end of it. However, I’m starting to realize that there’s something salespeople are also told that’s almost as bad as “no”. It’s I didn’t know you had that! I’ve heard it a few times recently and it’s like a punch in the stomach each time I hear it.
I didn’t know you had that usually comes from an existing customer and it usually implies that they would have been buying that from you all along if you simply would have told them you had that. Of course, there’s positive in it too since it also implies that they will start buying it from you now that they know you have that.
So, allow me to tell you that we have that.
For those of you that only buy Microfiber Towels from us, we also have a great selection of Microfiber Mops that make cleaning all hard flooring types a breeze.
For those of you that only buy Microfiber Mops from us, we also have a wide selection of Dusters including everything from dusters for delicates to mitts to high dusters.
For those of you that only buy Microfiber Dusters from us, we also have a diverse selection of Microfiber Cleaning Cloths. We’ve got towels to clean your eyeglasses and camera lenses, towels to dry your car, and everything in between.
There are two very important things to remember about caring for microfiber:
Keep them away from heat, this means don’t dry them in your dryer under high heat.
Don’t use fabric softeners or detergents with fabric softeners. We happen to sell a detergent that doesn’t have fabric softener in it, how convenient!
Microfiber towels, mops and dusters can last hundreds of washings when cared for properly. It may be washed in your home washing machine or by hand, but to ensure the long life of your microfiber please follow these guidelines:
Machine Washing Microfiber:
Wash in warm or hot water with mild detergent. Do not use fabric softener, it will clog the open spaces in the microfiber that do the cleaning rendering the towel or mop useless. Microfiber tends to grab a hold of lint in the wash just like it grabs dirt and dust when you’re using it to clean. With this in mind be careful of what you wash microfiber with. Avoid washing it with anything made of cotton especially terry cloth towels, socks etc. Ideally you should wash microfiber only with other microfiber, but if you need to mix loads wash it with other non-linting synthetic materials.
Hand Washing Microfiber:
Wash in hot water with mild detergent, use a soft bristled brush if necessary. Rinse thoroughly.
Air drying microfiber will make it last the longest. Microfiber dries relatively quickly. If you choose to dry your microfiber in a dryer do so on low heat or no heat and only dry with other microfiber products to prevent the mops or towels from picking up lint. Microfiber will grab any lint given off by other items in your dryer if they are dried with anything else that lints.
Commercial Laundering Instructions for Microfiber:
The following are the instructions and wash formula that will assure maximum performance and longevity.
Detergent: High solvent for heavy soil. No Alkaline. Dose determined by product specifications for poundage.
No bleach, no fabric softener.
Commercial Drying Options:
Option One: Tumble dry: Maximum temperature 140f NOTE: Air Dry is preferred to double life.
Option Two (Mops only): Inject disinfectant during final rinse and do not dry. Bag mops with twist tie, then transport. Disinfectant residual will reduce mildew growth prior to use.
Option Three (Mops only): Do not dry mops, instead, place damp mops in buckets and dose with your chemical product. Within ½ hour all mops will be saturated and ready for use.
It’s always a good idea to examine ways in which your business can be more efficient. If you own or manage a maid service, janitorial service, or building service company chances are you rely on microfiber towels, mops and dusters to keep your clients’ facilities sparkling. Working with a commercial laundry may be a great way to increase your efficiency.
What many people refer to as “Uniform Companies” or “Linen Companies” are more accurately described as Textile Rental Services. These commercial laundries launder anything in industry, hospitality and healthcare that need to be laundered on a regular basis, including uniforms, linens, towels, mops, and mats. They then rent those items to businesses and institutions that use them. In the interest of full disclosure, our company has been providing cleaning textiles (wet mops, dust mops, towels and dusters) to textile rental services since the 1950s. Roughly half of our business today is selling to Textile Rental Services; the other half is selling directly to end users like maid and janitorial services. Because of our history we understand the pros and cons of renting textiles vs. buying and washing them yourselves.
There are many things to consider when deciding if rental is right for your business. Among these are quality and inventory control, selection, cost, and natural resource consumption.
Often we get calls and emails from customers who ask how to care for their new microfiber towels, mops and dusters. There are a few guidelines that should be followed in regard to laundering microfiber and you can find more about the wash process here.
Today I wanted to focus on drying microfiber. If you’ve ever noticed that your microfiber has become less absorbent and less soft with age, it could be because you’re drying it too hot. Microfiber is durable, so durable that a microfiber towel or mop can last hundreds of washings when cared for properly. That said, since each fiber is so tiny, 1/20th the diameter of silk, it’s pretty delicate and can be damaged by heat. Take a look at that image to the right. It shows a cross section of a single fiber. Notice all the edges on the fiber, all the surface area? The edges give microfiber its scrubbing power and the surface area gives microfiber its absorbency. Those tiny little edges will degrade over time; the degradation is accelerated by heat!
Typical residential clothes dryers reach 170°F inside the drum. If you can avoid it, don’t dry microfiber on high heat. We recommend low heat or no heat if possible. The absolute best option is to let your microfiber air dry. Following these tips will help you extend the life of your microfiber.
We received the following question this week from a customer: Can microfiber mop heads be washed, sanitized, dried and reused?
Just like a home builder might forget that not everybody knows how to finish drywall or hang a door, we sometimes forget that things that seem obvious to us might not be obvious to our customers. This is one of those instances. Although it’s not quite a new years resolution, because if it was we’d surely fail, we’ll try to do a better job of explaining things that we assume people already know… even if our last blog post was about this very subject. Haha! It’s important so we’ll go over it again.
The answer to the question above is YES! Microfiber mops are made to be washed, sanitized, dried and reused. Microfiber mops originally gained popularity in hospitals in Europe. In this setting microfiber mops are washed, sanitized and dried daily. Then they were back to work the next day. When done correctly these mops can last hundreds of washings. The microfiber mop pads can absolutely be sanitized, the question is what is the best way to do it. The CDC recommends that hospitals wash contaminated textiles with detergent in water at 160° for 25 minutes. Unless you have a commercial boiler at home, you probably don’t have the ability to get water that hot. So if you’re really concerned with sanitizing your mops the easiest thing to do is to use a little bleach. Contrary to what you may have heard using a little bleach in the laundering process will not damage microfiber. There is a difference between microfiber mops (or towels) soaking in bleach while you’re cleaning and a little bleach in the wash.
The most important aspect in making microfiber towels last is how you wash them. When cared for properly microfiber towels can last hundreds of washings. There are three important rules to remember when washing microfiber:
Only wash microfiber with other microfiber. If you try to mix microfiber with other items like cotton towels you’ll find that the microfiber has picked up all the lint and fuzz that came off of the cotton towels. Once the microfiber has picked up lint it’s really difficult to pick it off, it essentially ruins the towel. The only way to prevent this is to keep your microfiber separate from the rest of your laundry.
Do not use fabric softeners with microfiber. Softeners will clog the microscopic pores in microfiber and will destroy their ability to absorb. This will make your microfiber towels nothing more than a soft cloth good for polishing and not much else. It will ruin their effectiveness as a cleaner. One thing you may not realize is that most laundry detergents contain softeners; because of this we recommend our Free and Clear Microfiber Detergent. It doesn’t contain any softeners, nor does it contain any optical brighteners or scent.
Don’t dry microfiber under high heat. The best way to dry your microfiber towels is to let them air dry however for most people that’s not an option. If you can’t air dry it’s best to dry microfiber towels under low heat or no heat. The good news is microfiber dries very quickly, you’ll find that microfiber towels under no heat don’t take any more time to dry than cotton towels under high heat.
As you all know Microfiber is an incredible cleaning tool. However, it is important to remember that as great as microfiber is, you cannot use it everywhere. It’s replaced so many of our traditional cleaning methods in so many applications. A few years ago in a restaurant the same cotton bar mop that would be used for everything in the kitchen would also be used to wipe down table between customers and probably even to wash the windows. Now in many cases microfiber has replaced the cotton bar mop in the front of the house, however in the kitchen you probably won’t find much of it with the possible exception of it being used to dry dishes and polish flatware.
There’s a very good reason microfiber can’t replace cotton in the kitchen; it melts when exposed to heat.
The picture above is what happens when you try to use our all purpose microfiber towel to remove a vegetable grilling basket from a 400+ degree barbecue. The picture to the left is what happens when you put a microfiber waffle towel used for drying to close to a lit gas stove (actually right on top of a lit gas stove). As you can see the towels didn’t catch on fire, but they did melt like a plastic would when exposed to high heat. The reason for this is the polyamide (nylon) fibers in the towels have a relatively low melting point. Because of this you have to be careful when using microfiber in a kitchen or other application with the possibility of exposure to high heat.
Are microfiber cleaning products truly green cleaning tools? Overall, does microfiber have a positive impact on the environment or a negative impact? There are three questions we must ask and we’ll make an evaluation based on the answers; is it made in a green way, is it used in a green way and can it be disposed of in a green way?
Let’s start with the first question. Is there anything green about what microfiber is made from or how it’s manufactured? When compared to a natural fiber like cotton the answer is no. Microfiber is made mostly from polyester which is composed mostly from an ester and a dihydric alcohol and a terephthalic acid. It also requires nearly twice the energy to produce microfiber as it does to produce a natural fiber such as cotton.
Is it used in a green way? The answered is an overwhelming yes! There isn’t anything else on the market that cleans as effectively without using chemicals as microfiber. The difference between microfiber and other non-microfiber mops, towels or dusters is the other products rely on chemicals to do the cleaning and they just remove what the chemicals release from the surface. Microfiber does both, it loosens dust, dirt and debris from surface and also takes it off of the surface. It’s also exponentially more durable than natural fibers like cotton. Compare a microfiber towel to a cotton bar towel. A cotton bar towel can be washed 20-30 times before it loses its effectiveness, a microfiber towel can be washed 200-300 times before it loses its effectiveness. Since a microfiber towel lasts ten times longer that certainly overcomes the fact that it’s manufactured in a less environmentally friendly way.
Can it be disposed of in a way that’s environmentally friendly? Yes! First of all, microfiber is not biodegradable. If you’re concerned about the environment then you don’t want to toss worn out microfiber in trash receptacles that will end up in a landfill. However there are numerous ways to recycle microfiber. The easiest way is to take your worn out microfiber to a thrift store like Salvation Army or Goodwill. When they have textiles that don’t sell they send them off to companies that repurpose them for things like cushioning and batting. Another way to recycle microfiber is to send them directly to the companies that repurpose them.
Despite microfiber’s drawbacks which include what it’s made from and the fact that it’s not biodegradable; microfiber is absolutely a green cleaning tool. Its drawbacks are far outweighed by the benefits of microfiber which include its incredible durability and the fact that you can clean effectively without chemicals.
Not all microfiber towels are created equal. We collected microfiber towels from Walmart, Target and K-Mart. They’re “all purpose” type terry microfiber towels. We wanted to compare them to our 16″x16″ All Purpose Microfiber Towel. We put the towels through three tests; a touch test in which we compared how the towels felt to the touch, a weigh test and an absorbency test. We made a video of the test:
Clearly our towel performed the best. Keep this in mind the next time you see microfiber towels available at a retail store. Are they as absorbent? Will they grab and hold as much? Are they as heavy? Will they last as long?