Either of these is added to hot-water starch for the above reason.
SALT added to water cools and hardens it, and thus tends to prevent colour from running. It helps especially to fix black, blue, and green. It is used in the rinsing water, 1 table-spoonful to 1 quart of water.
AMMONIA is employed with melted soap for washing Jaeger and fine flannels, as it has a wonderful power of dissolving grease. It must not be used with hot water, as, being volatile, it flies off in the steam. Being a strong poison, it should be labelled, and kept in a glass-stoppered bottle, because it evaporates through a cork.
WASHING MACHINES are expensive, a good one costing from £2 10s. to £10; but they are most valuable for large washings and heavy articles, saving time and labour. They must, however, be thoroughly understood, as improper use will prove injurious to the linen. Dollies and pegs must be wielded carefully, and not used for fine things.
Those with indiarubber rollers are best, as, being more yielding, they are less destructive to buttons. Manual wringing is apt to overstrain and tear fine things.
Everything must be folded evenly before wringing, and after use the screw should be loosened to remove the strain of constant pressure. Wooden rollers should be wiped dry, as otherwise they become soft and quickly worn out, and can only be replaced at great expense. The bearings should be kept clean and well oiled, the black grease removed by rags and a narrow brush dipped in paraffin; and fresh oil should then be applied with a quill feather, as a lubricant, to prevent the unpleasant creaking which, being caused by one part grating against another, hastens the wearing out of the machine.
TUBS should be made of wood, no nails being used in their manufacture, as then there is no danger of rust. Wooden utensils are also cheaper and more easily kept clean. The scum must be removed before it hardens, the tubs scrubbed the way of the grain, and clean cold water left in them to prevent shrinkage and leakage.
ZINC TUBS are more difficult to keep clean; after use they must be well rinsed, dried, and left upside down to avoid dust and rust.
BOILERS are made of iron or copper. They must be left perfectly dry; while warm, after use, they should be emptied and dried. Iron boilers are treated in the same way as galvanized baths (see Chapter XV (Ironware).); copper ones are usually cleaned with soap and sand. Care must be taken that wet clothes are never allowed to rest on the brickwork round a copper, as the iron in the bricks often causes iron-mould. For this reason any nails in the boiler-lid should be covered with putty.
The stick must be smooth, to avoid tearing the clothes. Where the water is hard, and the boiler very old, it is wise to boil fine white clothes in a bag.