Even with the best washing machine in your home, more often than not, you will find yourself needing dry-cleaning services for your most delicate fabrics. Although the upfront cost of dry cleaning is not much, it can quickly pile up and take a significant chunk of your budget. That’s why you need to know how much you’re going to pay for dry cleaning services and possible methods to cut down on the cost where possible.
In this quick and short blog, you will get to know the factors that affect the cost of dry cleaning and what you can do about it.
What’s Dry cleaning?
While regular cleaning involves using water and soap to remove stains, dry cleaning uses a chemical solvent and no water to clean clothes and other items around the house. Contrary to popular opinion, dry cleaning still uses fluids, but not water.
After soaking and cleaning in the solvent, the solvent is extracted from the garments and placed in a dryer.
What can affect the cost of dry cleaning?
Now that you know what dry cleaning entails, it’s also essential to understand why the costs might differ each time you visit the dry cleaner.
One of the leading factors of varying costs of dry cleaning is the running cost of the business. The dry cleaner has to buy the chemicals, pay rent and licenses, and also pay the employees. Depending on your locality, the operating costs for the business can be high or low. It plays a significant role in how much you pay to have your clothes dry cleaned.
Type of chemicals used
In the past, dry cleaners have used chemicals and solvents that are highly flammable, and even some are toxic. However, some are switching to eco-friendly products either out of their goodwill or as a requirement by the state.
Regardless of the reason, eco-friendly dry cleaning products are more expensive. That also means you pay more if your clothes are dry cleaned by a business that uses eco-friendly products or has adopted green practices.
Type of service
Some dry cleaners have a premium or express service. The express service is perfect for customers who cant wait long. It’s also perfect for rush orders like a last-minute tuxedo cleaning.
In most cases, you should have your garments ready on the same day after a few hours. This convenience comes with a price tag. On average, you could pay up to three times the standard rate if you decide to go for the express services.
There are also premium services offered by some dry cleaners. These provide a variety of benefits to the customer, which include a multi-stage cleaning process, hand finishing, minor repairs, and even insurance coverage for those utterly essential garments.
Premium services are perfect when you’re taking your most prized garments like wedding dresses, tuxedo, or designer clothes to the dry cleaner. Expectedly, the premium service also comes with a premium price tag to match.
Material and type of garment
Some garments are easier to handle than others. Others require meticulous handling and precise cleaning to avoid disaster. Other household items like duvets take up more space and reduce the load in the dry cleaning machines. Each of these has to be considered carefully when the dry cleaner is setting up your bill.
Can I Save Money on My Dry Cleaning?
After careful consideration, you must have noticed how expensive dry cleaning can be. The truth is, it’s almost impossible to do without dry cleaning and buying the equipment for use in your home is not practical.
But, there are a few tips you can implement that will help you save money without compromising your clean and sharp look.
- Buy a clothing brush – some of those little specs and streaks you see on your clothes can be easily removed using a clothing brush. A good brush is cheap and will effectively get rid of dirt particles on your suits and outerwear. Brushing occasionally will give you more uses out of the clothes before you need to have them dry cleaned.
- Go for dry cleaners with equipment on-site – some dry cleaners only have a collection shop, and the cleaning plant is located elsewhere. Location can drastically increase costs because of handling and the back and forth carting of your clothes. You can make significant savings if you go for a cleaner with a shop and the cleaning plant in the same place.
- Consider a home dry-cleaning kit – you don’t always have to take all your garments to the dry cleaning. Some of the stains and spots are something you can easily take care off at home with a simple home dry cleaning kit. With this kit, you reduce your trips to the dry cleaner o when you have stubborn stains that need commercial attention.
- Shop around – the closest dry cleaner is not always the best. You might have the convenience of proximity, but, you could be paying more than you need to. Try shopping around for different prices and compare. On the surface, the difference might not look like much, but when you pile it up, it could be all the difference you need.
- Haggle – never underestimate the power of asking. It might not be indicated in the shop ut you can always ask for a discount but have something to offer. You can ask for a small price cut with the promise of making the shop your go-to for all your dry cleaning needs.
The burden of dry cleaning doesn’t have to wear you down. There are easy tips and tricks you can use to minimize the budget and understanding the different costs also goes a long way in helping you save money.
Don’t forget! You don’t always have to take all your clothes to the dry cleaning. If you can throw it in your washing machine or hand wash, do that. Only use the drycleaner for clothes with labels that recommend dry cleaning.