What is Wet Cleaning?

The Benefits of Wet Cleaning

Those looking for ways to maintain a “dry clean only” wardrobe without the need for perc-containing dry cleaning methods now have a new option in wet cleaning. Wet Cleaning is a water-based cleaning system using computer-controlled washers and dryers, very mild specialized detergents, and skilled workers to monitor it all. There are many benefits of wet cleaning over conventional dry cleaning, including benefits to:

  • Clothing: Though clothing can slightly shrink with this method, it will have no odor, it gets whiter, and stains are more readily removed than with dry cleaning. It can be used for cotton, silk, leather/sued, wool, beaded items, and even wedding gowns, though it is not suitable for antique satin, acetate linings, gabardine, or highly-structured garments.
  • Environment: Wet cleaning doesn’t require any hazardous chemicals and therefore has no toxic waste or air pollution. The only environmental downside is that it does require more water.
  • Finances: This method requires more workers to implement, but the chemicals used are much less expensive - that means more jobs and fewer toxins. Everyone wins!

You can find wet cleaners in your area by searching in your local phone directory for “wet cleaning” or by accessing one of the following resources:

To learn more about dry cleaning alternatives check out our dry cleaning article. You may also be interested in reading our DIY recipes for laundry detergent and fabric softeners.



Case Study: Wetcleaning Systems for Garment Care. (n.d.). Retrieved June 14, 2010, from US Environmental Protection Agency: http://www.epa.gov/dfe/pubs/garment/wsgc/wetclean.htm

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