Dry Cleaning FAQ's

Dry Cleaning FAQ's

What is Drycleaning?

Drycleaning is a process that cleans clothes without water. All garments are immersed and cleaned in a liquid solvent. Because no water is used, the process is called "dry."

All About Shirts

Although you may think you can wear a shirt forever, shirts eventually become worn out or exhibit other problems. The Drycleaning & Laundry Institute says “that the average life expectancy of a shirt is about 35-50 washes, or roughly two years”. But, this obviously will fluctuate depending on different circumstances.

If you see an issue with the color running over a brand new shirt, you should consider the following information. The Federal Trade Commission’s Care Labeling Rules tell us “that all components in a garment must withstand the recommended care procedures. If one or more dyes in a multi-colored shirt are not colorfast, bleeding will occur whether you wash it at home or we launder it for you”.

Wrinkled and extra fabric in the collar and cuffs sometimes show a result of shrinking, which leaves too much outer fabric. Then, your shirt might appear to have wrinkles. The manufacturer is responsible for coordinating the proper interfacing and fabric.

If the color appears to be wrong in your pinstriped shirt, it is most likely that the colored yarns are diminishing. The colored yarns of your shirt were dyed with either sulfur-based or fiber-reactive dyes, which we tend to see degrade whenever laundered excessively. This may indicate that your shirt is reaching the end of its life expectancy.

You may question why underarms stains still appear in your shirt. Perspiration can weaken or even stain the fabric. Aluminum chlorides, which are found in antiperspirants, can also weaken the fabric under the arms. If you regularly launder you shirt after wearing it, you might be able to minimize these stains.

We do check your shirt for a cracked or missing button. Obviously sometimes they may be difficult to detect, therefore if we miss a button, bring it to our attention and we will replace it for you promptly.

Discoloration or gray specks on your shirt are due to the manufacturer improperly applying adhesive to meld interfacings with the outer fabric. We cannot prevent as we do not have the foreknowledge before the laundering process. If you think your shirt has been shrunk while being laundered, it is probably due to the poorly constructed fabric.


Your Clothes Count!

Of course you are able to wash your casual clothes at home, but getting them professionally cleaned results in the best situation for your clothes. Comet professionals are equipped with the skills to make your clothes look their best.

We also know that ironing can be a much disliked household task; therefore we can do it for you, with your clothes looking the sharpest. At Comet, we make garment care easy for you. All you have to do is drop your soiled items off and pick up your professionally cleaned and pressed garments. Comet offers an excellent value by providing quality work along with great customer service and convenience. Trust the experts at your local Comet Cleaners to care for your clothes as if they were their own.

We guarantee to do our best to remove the stains from our customer’s clothing. Although sometimes it may be easy, it can also be difficult. But, we are professionally trained to get the job done. In order for the stain to be removed completely, there are many factors that we must consider: the nature of the stain, the type of fabric, and the colorfastness of the dye. Certain fabrics and dyes are unyielding and resist cleaning or stain removal techniques. Some stains are just impossible to remove. However, our special equipment allows us to properly remove most stains on your clothing.

Tips for Extending Garment Life

Bring your stained garments into Comet as soon as you can.

Never iron stained clothes.

Never rub a stain. Blot it.

Indicate any stain that may be hidden to us whenever you bring your clothes to the cleaners, before we begin the dry cleaning process.

Protect your clothing from an excessive amount of contact with perspiration.

Apply toiletries, such as lotions, antiperspirants, and perfume, before you get dressed. Otherwise your clothes may be prone to color change.

Have your garments cleaned before storing them for the season.

Protect your garments from overexposure to artificial lights and natural sunlight.

Clean all matching pieces of garment at the same times.

Read the care labels

Does Comet Support Going Green?

Comet Cleaners supports going green by recycling approved products!

The dry cleaner solvents go through a state of the art filtration process that allows extended usability. Most locations use a hydrocarbon solvent that is environmentally friendly.

Many locations recycle hangers.

The plastic poly that we use to protect your clothing at many of our locations is made of 100% biodegradable materials and is 100% recyclable.

Garment Life Expectancy

Does Dry Cleaning shorten the life of a garment?  On the contrary, frequent cleaning prolongs the life of a garment. Not only do stains set with age, making the garment un-wearable, but ground-in dirt and soil act as abrasives, like sandpaper, causing rapid wear of fibers. Also, insects, some too small to be seen, are attracted to soiled clothes and will cause further damage that is often not apparent until cleaned.

How Long Should My Shirt Last? Determining how long a shirt should last is difficult due to the variances in frequency of wear. The number of launderings is a better measuring method. The average shirt should have a wear life of 35 to 50 washings. This will fluctuate depending on the amount of abrasion and strain placed on the shirt during wear, the fiber content, the type of fabric, and the starch preference.


Most dress shirts are difficult to shrink. The manufacturer has already allowed for the normal two percent and progressive shrinkage requirements. This shrinkage is usually not enough to cause a complaint. Shrinkage beyond this is usually due to poorly stabilized materials. Shrinkage complaints can easily be resolved by measuring the collar and sleeve length. Measure the collar from the end of the buttonhole to the center of the button. Measure the sleeve length in a straight line from the center of the back of the collar at the seam to the end of the cuff. If these measurements correspond to the shirt size, it has not shrunk.


Tiny holes can appear at random throughout an oxford shirt due to the weaving process. These should not be confused with damage from bleach. We do not use bleach at Comet unless absolutely necessary and in a separate and controlled area. Oxford consists of two thin warp yarns to every soft, thicker yarn in the filling direction. The unbalanced construction causes the thin yarn to break, leaving tiny holes. Manufacturers could use a higher twist in the yarn to retard the development of holes, but eventually any oxford weave will develop tiny pinholes. In addition, tears in oxfords occur in the direction of the softly twisted, thicker yarns. All the yarns in an oxford receive the same care process, but the constant abrasion in wear causes the thick yarns to weaken and tear.


Buttons may crack during pressing even though the press padding is in excellent condition and the procedures used are correct. The reason for this is that there is an inherent problem in the button or the way the button was applied to the shirt. The majority of shirt buttons are made from a polyester resin. The strength of the button depends on the amount of polyester in the resin; some imported buttons contain less polyester. Some manufactures use less expensive, off-quality buttons to save money but this sometimes results in higher than average breakage. We inspect each shirt and replace broken or missing buttons, free of charge, as an added service to our customers.

Perspiration Damage

Perspiration, if allowed to stay in the shirt, will eventually stain and also weaken the fabric, allowing the weakened area to be damaged during washing. Aluminum chlorides found in antiperspirants will also weaken the fibers under the arm. Controlled use of antiperspirants and frequent washings immediately after wear may minimize this type of damage.

Fugitive Dyes

The Care Label Rule states that the color in a garment must withstand the recommended care procedure. If the dyes in a multicolored shirt are not colorfast, bleeding will occur. The dye will migrate into adjacent areas during the cleaning process. Some dyes dissolve in water and are partially removed during laundering. After the first laundering, the lightening of color may be apparent, or it may be progressive and only noticeable after several care procedures.


Interfacing puckering and excess fabric in the shirt collar and cuffs after laundering is caused by shrinkage of the interfacing within the collar and cuffs. If the shirt is laundered, and the interfacing shrinks excessively, it will cause the puckering of the outer fabric. The manufacturer must select an interfacing, which is compatible with the shirt fabric. Collars and cuffs can have a mottled gray or shiny look in specific areas when excess adhesive is used to fuse the collar or cuff fabric and the interfacing. This excess adhesive softens in pressing and penetrates the outer fabric of the collar and cuffs. This can be prevented by the correct selection of an adhesive by the manufacturer, which is compatible to laundering.

Stains and Spills

Stains from medicines, acids, cleaning products, the acidic or sugary residue of foodstuffs and beverages, or liquid chlorine bleach, can easily damage clothing. Spillage of these types of normal household products cause localized fabric weakness or color loss in the area of contact with the fabric. This type of damage may not show up until after washing. This type of staining is usually permanent and can only be prevented by avoiding contact with these products.