Washing and Drying Procedures Standard ISO 6330 Completely Overhauled

Edition 3 of the long-established ISO 6330 standard was published April 15, 2012. This revision contains major update to the legislation and is the result of over 10 years of debate amongst the various stakeholders.

Online PR News – 11-June-2012 – London/England – Throughout the revised standard there are changes to elements, examples of which include renaming the types of detergent and ballast, the definition of new machine types and technical changes to washing programs. The changes to the standard address modern laundry issues better and reflect common domestic practice nowadays. The changes also better attune the standard to the care symbols that have become established throughout the consumer textiles industry. The European Commission for Standardization (CEN) has already endorsed this revision as an EN ISO norm.

The programs for front-loading washing machines have been expanded, renumbered and modified with agitation levels “Normal,” “Mild” and “Gentle” included. This is in line with revisions to ISO 3758 (http://www.iso.org/iso/catalogue_detail?csnumber=42918), amending the washing symbols for textiles and apparel, also published in April.

A point worth noting and that may otherwise lead to confusion is that machine types “A1” and “A2” are reversed in their meanings.

In modifying the methods for drying, the revision adds a new procedure for Drip Dry Flat (D), which has bumped Flat Press to procedure “E” and Tumble Dry to procedure “F”. There is now a table of definitions not included in older versions of the standard. Firstly the “Pulsator” top-loading washing machine (Type C) is additional to the agitator type top-loading machine option of previous versions. Secondly, a new “Condensor” tumble dryer (Type A2) is introduced. There are also changes to makeweight ballast, where the three types remain the same, but are differently constructed and renumbered to Types I, II and III.

Another point to note is that old type numbers for cotton and polyester/cotton ballast (Types I and III) are different and so may confuse the unwary.

New types of detergent are introduced in edition 3, expanding the possible types from four to eight, to include new detergents, such as AATCC 2003, which is designated the new type number 5. However, certain detergent type numbers previously used in edition 2, such as ECE (A), which was formerly given type number 2, is now designated as 3.

The method of calculating tumble dryer cycle time has also been revised. The basis is now on a 2 kg load rather than 4 kg, in line with the washing load adopted in the rest of the standard.

As mentioned above, ISO 3758:2012 (in Europe, EN ISO 3758:2012) is a newly published international standard that redefines textile care symbols for washing, bleaching, drying and ironing. These are intended to guide users with precautions and maximum treatment that will not result in damage to textiles during the cleaning process. The most marked change to the symbols used revises the unpopular crossed-out opaque triangle symbol for “Do not bleach” to a crossed-out outline triangle. In addition to the revised symbols for natural drying, there is a new symbol with two horizontal lines for “Flat drip dry” and the previous two diagonal lines in the corner of the symbol for “In the shade” is modified to a single diagonal line.

In the USA, the symbols defined by the ASTM system are permitted as alternatives to the ISO standard, but the graphical symbols registered in the ISO 7000 system have yet to include these.

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