Tuesday, April 29, 2014 (Victor, New York) — For Immediate Release
Firefighting garments require specialized care and cleaning in order to remove chemical, biological, and combustion toxins. Industrial washing machines effectively clean standard turnout and bunker gear, but even the most durable garments break down over time from the aggressive physical and chemical scrubbing that characterize the standard industrial cleaning process.
Effectively cleaning aluminized proximity gear is an even more challenging process. Standard industrial cleaning procedures quickly degrade layers of aluminized protection, leading to nearly a complete loss of radiant heat protection. Even when proximity garments maintain their shiny, silver appearance after being washed, they have still lost a significant percentage of their protective value. Traditionally, the safest cleaning method has been to manually clean the surface of the aluminized gear using soft damp cloth; however, this procedure is not effective as it does not remove all hazardous toxins from the garment.
Newtex Industries, a leading provider of specialized materials for firefighting and industrial heat protection, has recently completed a 3 year study to identify a safe and effective way to clean proximity gear. In partnership with Omegasonics (www.omegasonics.com/), a manufacturer of specialized ultrasonic washing machines, Newtex can certify that Z-Flex® proximity suits can be quickly, safely, and thoroughly cleaned using these ultrasonic washing machines with a low impact wash cycle. After dozens of trials at various durations, we have determined that Z-Flex® does not exhibit any decline in radiant heat performance after being cleaned with ultrasonic technology.
“It’s exciting to finally have a technology that truly cleans aluminized proximity garments safely”, said Doug Bailey, who heads product development at Newtex, “but more importantly, these machines are inexpensive and can also be used to clean boots, gloves, and helmets.”
Mr. Bailey went on to emphasize the importance of this development, “The idea of putting aluminized proximity shells in a washing machine for cleaning or to test for durability has never been a good idea. It always had an immediate detrimental impact on reflectivity and performance. Until today, however, the garment makers felt it was all they could offer”.
- Z-Flex Silver
- Z-Flex Aluminized Rayon
- Z-Flex Aluminized Fiberglass
- Z-Flex Aluminized Aramid
- Z-Flex Aluminization
Newtex Technical Support,
Tel: (800) 836-1001 or (585) 924-9135
Newtex is a global leader in high temperature fabrics and engineered systems for thermal management and fire protection. Our products are manufactured at our world-class ISO certified facility in Rochester, New York and distributed globally to a range of Fortune 500 industrial companies and military customers. We are the only fully integrated provider of woven materials and fabric-based systems that protect from extreme heat and fire – from proprietary glass yarn processing, to in-house weaving, coating and laminating, to custom designed and sewn systems. Our integrated expertise, in tandem with our highly rated team of customer service professionals, ensures you get the right materials or system design for your unique high temperature application.