Taking care of your Dartex mattress

10/06/2015 11:57:18

We get a lot of questions asking about the best way to clean and care for polyurethane-coated Dartex textiles. 
It’s not possible for us to recommend any specific cleaning products as the formulations are often changed by their manufacturers, but if you follow the guidelines below, you won’t go far wrong.
Horses for Courses
Make sure the cleaner that you are using was designed for cleaning textile products. A lot of hard surface cleaners are just too aggressive. 
Read the instructions for correct use and make sure you follow them. It is worth checking any technical documentation you have for the cleaning products, including the Material Safety Data Sheet. 
We recommend avoiding extremes of pH (aim for between pH5 and pH8) and highly oxidising cleaners (for example, hydrogen peroxide). Most of the time, cleaning with a soft cloth dampened with a neutral detergent is all that is required. 
Dartex has a long history of use with chlorine-based products and you should have no problems using 1,000ppm available chlorine (from NaDCC or NaOCl) for regular cleaning and up to 10,000ppm available chlorine for occasional cleaning, provided you rinse and dry after use. 
To make sure you don’t damage the waterproof coating, don’t use abrasive cleaners.
Clean, Rinse and Dry
The first step is obvious – clean the surface until all the soil has been dealt with. To ensure microbes and spores are killed, many cleaning products recommend leaving the surface wet for a short while after wiping. This is absolutely fine. 
Once the clean and kill is complete, it is important that the fabric is then rinsed with clean water. This removes any residual cleaning agent. Regular exposure to cleaning agents, used as the manufacturer intends, will not damage the fabric. 
If the cleaners are not rinsed off, the chemical agents will start to attack the fabric. What’s more, as the surface dries, the remaining cleaner gets more and more concentrated, further accelerating the damage. 
Concentrated cleaners will leave crystalline deposits on the surface which can abrade the coating causing damage too. By rinsing after cleaning, this potential problem is removed.
Finally, you should dry the surface. Our studies have shown that a wet fabric can take over twenty hours to air dry when wiped with some cleaners! 
This is important because when the polyurethane surface gets wet, it absorbs some of the liquid and swells up (this is how the polyurethane is able to breathe moisture vapour, increasing patient comfort). 
When the polyurethane surface is swollen, it is more susceptible to mechanical damage. Our studies show that a polyurethane can remain swollen for over an hour after the cover looks dry. 
Never put a mattress back into service or storage whilst it is damp.
What about washing?
Our un-dyed fabrics can be washed up to 95°C, and the dyed fabrics up to 71°C. If you wash a dyed fabric at 95°C, the coating will be fine, but there may be dye loss, so don’t mix with your white socks! The products are fine with normal detergents.
Need further advice?
Speak to our technical team enquiries@dartexcoatings.com 

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