What Does Perm Press Mean With a Dryer?

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Modern-day clothes dryers, along with washing machines, help greatly in making the home laundry process relatively straightforward. Clothes dryers are equipped with a number of settings to handle a wide array of fabrics and fabric treatments, for one. For example, a clothes dryer can dry a large load of washed cotton fabrics like towels in one load and then more delicate permanent press items in another. How a clothes dryer's permanent press setting works, for instance, is actually simplicity itself.

Clothes washer and dryer.
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A clothes dryer's permanent press setting consists of a heat cycle and a cool-down cycle. Permanent press settings in clothes dryers use medium heat levels to protect the garments and fabrics placed in a clothes dryer. Clothes dryer permanent press settings also help preserve the nonwrinkling character of permanent press-labeled clothes placed in them for drying. Permanent press settings in clothes dryers are intended for colored garments, too, most of which aren't made to handle regular or heavy settings and their high heat.

Clothes from dryer.
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Clothes dryer permanent press settings also provide cool-down once heat drying is complete. Using a combination of medium heat only and a cool-down cycle allows garments dried in a clothes dryer set to permanent press to resist fading and damage. In clothes dryers set to permanent press, the cool-down cycle is characterized by lots of tumbling action but no heat. No heat is present during a clothes dryer's permanent press setting's cool-down cycle to reduce wrinkling of heat-sensitive fabrics and no-iron fabric finishes.

Clothes dryer.
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Clothes dryer permanent press settings have to do with heat drying and then cool-down cycles, not specific drying times. Clothes dryers can be set to provide various total drying times, though the cool-down cycle in a clothes dryer usually lasts only a specific length of time. Typically, timed cool-down cycles as part of a clothes dryer's permanent press setting range from 4 to 10 minutes. Total drying times of a clothes dryer's permanent press setting typically last up to 80 minutes.

Timer settings.
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Permanent press in a clothes dryer can be used as an alternative to garment ironing. In lieu of ironing, place a wrinkled garment in a clothes dryer set to permanent press for about 10 minutes to remove wrinkling. Lightweight fabrics such as polyester, which don't tolerate high heat, are especially helped by clothes dryer permanent press settings. In fact, high heat is the enemy of all permanent press-labeled garments. All clothes dryers, gas or electric, feature permanent press settings.

Unloading clothes dryer.
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