Apparel Solutions International has been receiving questions on how to clean flame resistant (FR) and arc-rated (AR) personal protective equipment (PPE) clothing in response to COVID-19. As a PPE manufacturer we advise following the manufacturer’s recommendations for your specific garment. This includes not using chlorine bleach or hydrogen peroxide bleach. Bleach can cause flame retardant treated fabrics to lose their flame-resistant properties and become flammable. Inherently flame-resistant fabrics can be weakened by bleach causing premature garment failure. Other specific manufacturers recommendations to not cause premature garment failure can include recommended washing & drying temperatures, and especially for moisture management performance fabrics to not over dry apparel as this promotes garment shrinkage.
To date, following manufacturers recommendations around cleaning seems to have proven effective in removing Covid-19. This cleaning can be the washing process used by Industrial Launderers and Dry Cleaners -detergents & hot water, and dry cleaning -solvent & heat process. Washing PPE onsite or at home seems to also still be effective and the information provided by the hyperlinks below might be of help. Please be aware information is still being developed on COVID-19, so we strongly recommend staying up to date on information from World Health Organization and other trusted medical and infection disease control organizations.
- How to care for a person with COVID-19 at home: Advice for caregivers
- How Long Does the Coronavirus Live on Clothes—and Will Laundry Detergent Kill the Virus?
- How to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 While Doing Laundry
- Laundry 101: How to wash your clothes during COVID-19 pandemic