PERC is a colorless, organic liquid with a sharp, sweet odor that has been commonly used in the Dry Cleaning industry. Its use has been so widespread in the past that PERC is often referred to as "dry-cleaning fluid."
Its official chemical name is Tetrachloroethylene, also referred to as tetrachloroethene, or perchloroethylene, where the nickname PERC comes from.
Because PERC is an excellent solvent for organic materials, it has been used since the 1930s to wash fabrics and dissolve stains. PERC is effective on all types of common fabrics, and does not cause garments to shrink, or colors to bleed. It is also nonflammable, allowing the use of high heat during washing and pressing. PERC can also be reused, making it a cost-effective product.
Unfortunately, recent studies have raised questions about the side effects of PERC. It has been listed as a Type 2 Carcinogen, meaning it likely increases the risk of cancer. PERC has been shown to cause liver tumors in lab mice and kidney tumors in lab rats. In addition, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has classified PERC as a health and environmental hazard. PERC affects the quality of air we breathe, as well as the quality of water we drink.
In 2007, California prohibited the installation of new PERC based dry cleaning machines. By 2023, the state has mandated that all PERC machines be no longer used.
Because we care about the health of our customers, our employees, and our environment, Plaza Cleaners has already eliminated the use of PERC in favor of more environmentally friendly options.
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