dry cleaning

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dry cleaning,

process of cleaning fabrics without water. Special solvents and soaps are used so as not to harm fabrics and dyes that will not withstand the effects of ordinary soap and water. Dry cleaning began in France about the middle of the 19th cent., at first in small plants, where it was done by hand; with the development of specialized machinery it has become an important industry. The danger of fire—at first a constant menace because of the large amounts of flammable materials in use—was largely overcome by concentrating the work in specially designed plants and by the use of a high-boiling petroleum product still commonly used in the United States. Newer chlorinated hydrocarbon synthetic solvents, such as perchlorethylene, are nonflammable but require precautions against their toxicity and danger to the ozone layerozone layer
or ozonosphere,
region of the stratosphere containing relatively high concentrations of ozone, located at altitudes of 12–30 mi (19–48 km) above the earth's surface.
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. The process for dry cleaning ordinary fabrics is to place them in revolving washers where they are washed with the cleansing fluid and a special soap, rinsed with pure cleansing fluid, and then spun to remove most of the fluid. They are then dried with warm air in a tumbler. Delicate fabrics are done by hand. The cleansing fluids are reclaimed and used again. Unusual stains are given an expert test to determine the proper solvent; special stain removers include chloroform, ether, and carbon disulphide.

dry cleaning

[′drī klēn·iŋ]
(engineering)
To utilize dry-cleaning fluid to remove stains from textile.
References in classic literature ?
One day I took a canoe, and proceeded up one of the channels to visit it; I found the old town from its situation both sweeter and cleaner than that of Pernambuco.
The shiners, pouts, and perch also, and indeed all the fishes which inhabit this pond, are much cleaner, handsomer, and firmer-fleshed than those in the river and most other ponds, as the water is purer, and they can easily be distinguished from them.
Night-hawk was Jerry called; but no more lustrous or cleaner hansom than his ever closed its doors upon point lace and November violets.
Had there been any scandal in the dead man's family, or had his sons been wild or undutiful, then there might have been a glimmering of reason in this most unusual action; but Eben Hale's domestic happiness had been proverbial in the community, and one would have to travel far and wide to discover a cleaner, saner, wholesomer progeny of sons and daughters.
Yes, it's much cleaner," said Vassenka, putting his fat leg on a chair, fastening the bottom hook, and smiling with simple-hearted good humor.
Within was a smaller room, far cleaner and better appointed than the general appearance of the place promised.
Show me, if you can, Miss Fault-finder, but not fault-mender, a set of boys who will, on occasion, sooner chop a piece of logging and dress it for the crop, than my own children; though I say it myself, who, perhaps, should be silent; or a cradler that knows better how to lead a gang of hands through a field of wheat, leaving a cleaner stubble in his track, than my own good man
The different wards might have been cleaner and better ordered; I saw nothing of that salutary system which had impressed me so favourably elsewhere; and everything had a lounging, listless, madhouse air, which was very painful.
There were not cleaner windows, or whiter floors, or brighter Stoves, or more highly shining articles of furniture in old mahogany; there was not more rubbing, scrubbing, burnishing and polishing, in the whole street put together.
His voice was hoarse and coarse, and his face was coarse, and his stunted figure was coarse; but he was cleaner than other boys of his type; and his writing, though large and round, was good; and he glanced at the backs of the books, with an awakened curiosity that went below the binding.
No cleaner job had ever been carried out in the bloodstained annals of the society.
On this last point Lucy had her cunning projects, and when she and Maggie had made their dangerous way down the bright stairs into the handsome parlor, where the very sunbeams seemed cleaner than elsewhere, she directed her manoeuvres, as any other great tactician would have done, against the weaker side of the enemy.