A number of irons are now on the market for summer use when it is not desirable to have sufficient fire in the range to heat the irons. Some of these are electric irons, gas irons, and denatured-alcohol irons.
For general laundry purposes, one size of the ordinary sadiron is sufficient, but it is advisable to put several irons into a well-equipped laundry, to use for the various kinds of work to be done. Among them should be heavy, medium heavy, and small-pointed irons, the last for ironing ruffles and laces.
A frequent cause of poor ironing is the condition of the irons. They must be kept clean and free from rust to do good work. New irons should be heated thoroughly and rubbed with wax or grease before using. If irons are to be put away for any length of time, they should be covered with a thin coating of vaseline, clean grease, or paraffin, or wrapped in waxed paper. If starch cooks on, it should be removed immediately with a dull knife. If irons become dirty from careless use, or from being left on the stove during the preparation of the meals, they should be thoroughly washed with soap and water and carefully dried. To keep irons smooth while using them, they should be rubbed with wax or paraffin and wiped immediately with a clean cloth. They improve with wear, if they have good treatment.