DLI's Drycleaning Blog

Q&A and Useful Industry Information

E-mail any question to Techline@DLIonline.org.

Liquid Digester

Q: I keep a liquid digester on my stain removal board but it never seems to remove any stains. I apply the digester, tamp it, and then immediately flush with steam. Could I be using it incorrectly?

A: Digesters work on difficult stains containing protein, or albumin–blood, egg, milk, urine, and perspiration. They can be used on alkaline sensitive fabrics and dyes, where some conventional protein stain removal agents may not be safe. For best results, follow their guidelines.


At the stain removal board:

Flush the stained area with water or steam to remove any other stain removal agents. The fabric must be free of any residue from acid or alkaline stain removal agents, as this may destroy the enzymes. The enzymes also require moisture to work.

Without moisture the enzyme activity stops. Place the stained area over a towel and apply the digester following the manufacturers instructions.

Warm the area with a fine mist of steam by holding the steam gun four to five inches from the fabric. Be careful not to flush the digester from the fabric. Warm temperatures accelerate the digestion process. Liquid digesters’ activity increases with temperatures up to 158°F, and a marked decrease occurs at 70°F and below.

Set aside for 30 minutes and be sure to keep the treated area warm and do not allow it to dry out. Flush thoroughly with steam and dry before cleaning. Digesters can take from 15 minutes to several hours to work.

Some stains respond quickly to digestion while others require more time depending on the age and type of stain.

Posted By Harry Kimmel | 5/3/2016 8:26:55 AM