I’m building a brand new modern laundromat in my town. It’s almost completed, but I’m still at a loss as to what I should name my new business. We’re nearly ready to install the store’s signage, yet I’m still really stuck on a name. Can you give me any ideas?

I would never be so bold as to name someone else’s business. However, I will advise you not to stress out about it too much. Honestly, just about any name will do, as long as it relates to laundry in some way, as well as what you want to be known for within your marketplace – such as “Clean” or “Speed.” You get the idea.

I will point out that the most important part of naming any business or brand is choosing the first word. That word should be catchy and short – no more than five letters, if possible. The human brain has more difficulty remembering longer names. That’s why so many large companies and successful brands have shorter names – Nike, Dove, Chase, Tide, and so on.

We had washed baby clothes stained with milk and formula for a wash-dry-fold customer. We pretreated the stains and they seemed to be gone when we completed the washing and drying process. However, after the clothes were placed in storage for about a year, the stains reappeared. With pretreating and re-washing, they once again have disappeared. Is there a process to guarantee the removal of these stains once and for all?

If the fabric is white cotton, you can soak in a 10 percent solution of chlorine bleach and hot water. Let the garments sit for two or three hours, and then run them through a typical wash cycle. This should eliminate any remaining stains for good.

If they items are colored or made of a synthetic fabric, follow the same process, but instead use a 6 percent or 7 percent solution of hydrogen peroxide and hot water.

I have stains inside of my gas dryers on the backs of the drums. Is there anything that can be used to remove these stains without scratching the finish?

There are a number of synthetic cleaning pads available at the retail level that can do the job. You likely can purchase these pads at your local supermarket. They should remove the stains without scratching your stainless steel dryer drums.

Does smoke-damaged clothing require any special care? Also, is there any special way to treat scorching?

First of all, there really is no effective way to treat scorched garments. Once a garment is scorched, the molecular structure of the fabric has changed. Sometimes you can get lucky, and chlorine bleach or hydrogen peroxide will remove a minor scorch spot. Outside of that, you’re probably not going to have any luck.

Smoke damage is a bit easier to deal with. Your soap and chemical distributor should carry a commercial fabric softener that contains an odor eliminator. For badly damaged fabrics, you may need to do as many as four washes with the softener to completely remove the odor.

Another effective additive is Febreze, which is available in large bottles as a laundry additive at most grocery stores. Unless the smoke damage is excessive, I recommend using Febreze. Six to eight ounces for a 50-pound load should be effective, added directly to the wash cycle or in the final rinse in place of fabric softener. Again, you may need to repeat the wash cycle several times to remove the smoke odor completely.

Try washing the clothes once without Febreze, then washing them a second time with the additive. For stubborn odors, you can hang the freshly washed garment up and spray it with Febreze. Let it sit for a few hours, and see if the odor is any better.

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