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What Are the Advantages of Enzyme Washing?

By C. Stowers
Updated May 16, 2024
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When enzymes are added to laundry detergent, it adds a major boost of cleaning power. The enzymes attack the stains and break them down so that they are more easily washed away. There are many advantages of enzyme washing, such as being better for the environment than chemical detergents; allowing clothes to be washed in cold water, which can reduce energy costs; and softening the fabrics that are washed with enzymes.

Different enzymes attack different types of stains, including soil. For example, if a piece of clothing has a food stain on it, the stain most likely contains lipids, which are fats. An enzyme lipase would break down the stain and easily wash it away, so the use of enzyme washing can help ensure brighter colors and longer-lasting clothes.

Enzyme washing is better on the environment than the use of chemicals to wash clothes, because enzymes are biodegradable, so they break down instead of remaining in the water supply. Enzymes also work well with cold water, which can reduce one's energy bill. Hot water is not necessarily needed to remove stains. The high concentration of enzymes means that less detergent can be used per load of laundry, which also saves money.

Another advantage to enzyme washing is that enzymes soften the fabric and give it a finished look. For example, denim companies use enzyme washes to make jeans look well worn and comfortable. This allows a softer and worn-in feel without compromising the strength and quality of the denim. Other alternatives, such as stonewashing, can wear out the denim and affect how long it lasts. Enzyme washing also works well at any temperature, which means that delicate clothing can be cleaned without any damage being done.

The use of enzymes in detergent originated before the 1920s, but it took decades for the process to be perfected. Many detergent manufactures initially resisted the inclusion of enzymes, but enzymes became common in powdered detergents by the 1970s. By the early 21st century, most laundry detergents had enzymes in them.

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Discussion Comments
By Heavanet — On Jun 11, 2014

The neat thing about enzyme wash solutions is that they have other household uses besides laundry. This type of cleaning solution is great to use to remove stains on carpet, upholstery, and even hard surfaces because the enzyme action is so powerful.

Another benefit of cleaners that contain enzymes is that they also remove unpleasant odors. For example, pet owners who need to remove urine stains from carpet or fabric will find that enzyme cleaners not only remove the stain but also take away the smell of the urine.

By Ocelot60 — On Jun 11, 2014

This is a good article about enzyme wash, because many people are not aware of how well this type of cleaning solution works when doing laundry. Its stain removing benefits are incomparable, in my opinion.

There are several ways you can use enzyme cleaners in the laundry. First of all, you can soak fabrics in enzyme solution for several hours before putting them into the regular wash cycle. This method will help to break down and remove tough stains.

Another way to use an enzyme laundry cleaner for less difficult stains is to spray it directly on them, and rub the materials together vigorously before placing them in the wash. This method will help to prevent small stains from setting in and becoming impossible to remove.

Finally, you can pour some enzyme cleaner into your washing machine along with your regular laundry detergent. This method will work to remove stains that you may not have noticed, and give your laundry an overall fresh, clean appearance.

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