Indy's Best Dry Cleaner Explains How to Prevent Insect Damage to Your Clothes

November 28, 2017
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I recently noticed a teeny tiny hole in one of my cashmere sweaters when rotating it back into my closet after storing it during the summer.  My thought was, “that wasn’t there before I dry cleaned and stored it last spring”.  Did I clean it first?  Did I store it properly?

Although I don’t want to think about it, most likely this hole is a result of an insect, and the damage could have happened after cleaning, if I didn’t store it properly.  No one wants to think about the creepy crawly insects in their home but, they are there.  For as many as we see, there are thousands more that we don’t see.  And they love to feed on your fabric.

First – What you need to know about insect damage on clothing is although the most common cause is damage from moths, many types of insects are feeding on your fabrics.

Secondly – Some fabrics are more tasty to insects then others.  Especially if you’ve put an item away with a “clear stain” which is a stain in the fibers you don’t see from food and beverage, perspiration and fragrance.

Insects that feed on your clothing love wool, mohair and natural bristles (animal hair).  If your item has fur, feathers or down they are a target as well so check those coat closets too!

So, even if you have your items cleaned on a regular basis and especially before storing for a long period of time,
Here’s How to Prevent Insect Damage to Your Clothing:
  1. Clean your garments completely even if stains are not visible to the naked eye and the label says “Dry Clean Only” take it to a professional – like Classic Cleaners.
  2. Remove any stains from your garments before storing by pre-treating at home or pointing out the stains to our Customer Service Representative when you drop off.  Our CSRs mark stains with a red piece of tape and that area receives personal “by hand” stain removal attention.
  3. Moth balls used to be a common deterrent because as they evaporate from a solid into a gas – a gas toxic to moths, moth larve and many insects BUT, it is a pesticide also toxic to children and pets and it leaves behind a terrible odor that is difficult to “air out” and remove.  If you choose to use mothballs, our cleaning specialists are trained to remove the odor prior to wearing the items again.
  4. We suggest you invest in a cedar closet or cedar chest or in the least, cedar cubes and rings.  These are great for hanging right on your hangers or placing in a storage bin with your items.  Make sure the closet or storage bin stays tightly closed and the scent on the cedar pieces is STRONG.  Clean your garments completely even if stains are not visible to the naked eye.

 

Have you ever noticed an inexplicable hole in a favorite item?  Are there items hanging in your closet in danger of being an insects next meal?  Take inventory and launder or dry clean items you may have forgotten to clean before hanging back in your closet and contact us if you would like our help!

-S.O.