Post By GM
Post By lazarus
Post By dkmc
Shop uniforms --- cost way out of hand
Is it me or shop uniforms/rags etc costs are out of hand. I decided today that we are going to buy the uniforms/rags and wash ourselves. I have been kicking this around for years and today put some numbers together and we spend 10k a year!
I haven't bought rags in just about damn near forever, actual rags.
Between the two of us here we have enough dirty rotten trashed out clothes that have been keeping us going for almost 5 years, and there are still
2 full trash bags left, and more piling up at home daily. When they get nasty they go in the trash, we also supplement with paper towels(which do about
75% of what I need).
Thrift stores can be a good place to get stuff, a place near here used to charge 25 cents a pound or something, $5 for a trashbag full. They had all
the good stuff on hangers and the crap in bins in the middle. Dirt cheap rags.
Obviously you do uniforms, make sure you get uniforms that when trashed, make good rags.
Give your guys a couple bucks a pound for their old t-shirts, no underwear or socks (that's just nasty).
I find I go through rags quickest when I have easy access to nice clean rags, out of a pack of 25, the first 22 go pretty quick,
those last 3 seem to last forever.
I switched over to these a few years ago; Workhorse X70 Jumbo Roll Wiper S-11746 - Uline
Don’t think I’ll ever go back to rags.
If you're going to buy uniforms and launder them, think mossy oak. As a truck driver, my wife and I ruined hundreds of shirts and pants with 5th wheel grease, diesel oil, etc. Most were only wore one or two times. We had more rags than clothes. Now we wear camo pocket tees and black jeans. Worst stains now might be spilled bleach on the jeans and a sharpe can repair that in a pinch.
$!0K a year! ??
Wow......how many employees??
My "uniforms" consist of Black walmart jeans and black FOTL (Fruit of the loom) T shirts.
Add black (surprise!) sweatshirts in colder temps..... They get washed, but they don't show the
permanent grunge and grease stains that linger with lighter colors.
Plus today's laundry detergents are just amazing at cleaning tough dirt and stains.
I use the red shop rags from Sams, mostly for wiping my dirty hands and other stuff that's
not real nasty. Keep 100-150 on hand. For the real nasty stuff, I also have the Blue paper shop towels around. I use the Blue towels after i wash my hands, and let them dry & re-use several times, then if I need to clean up some real mess I pick from the 'used' pile first.
Once or twice a year the shop wash sink gets cleaned, then the mildly dirty red rags go in for a soak & rinse. Bad ones get tossed. I'm just mostly a one guy show so they last a while.
The Coyne or other 'industrial laundry services' are a huge ripoff IMO.
They used to come around wanting to 'rent' me shop towels, bring 100 per month (minimum) for .50 each. I said I hardly use 100 a year. Guy says 'no problem, we'll bring you 100 a month anyway no matter how many you use' (and they charge for 100 each month regardless......
I suspect with employees, you're probably supplying all the home garages and shops with shop towels as well?
I can't afford anything in the Uline catalog!
I think you can buy anything in there cheaper elsewhere
You'll never pay more.....
I have 3 people in uniforms, they each have 13 sets. With those and 100 shop towels in weekly rotation our bill is about $75.00 per week.
They have 5-6 sets picked up weekly depending on days worked and if we run sort of towels they will leave an extra 25-50
to get us by.
You haven't looked at Fastenal's list prices have you?
Originally Posted by dkmc
We got rid of the cloth rags and went to the Wipeall X80's, and haven't looked back since.
Jay I buy 2 shop coats for everyone and they are responsible for cleaning them.
I especially like them, because I can get knee deep in the shop and then just shed my shop coat and have nice clean clothes underneath. Never have to worry about getting my office or (or especially) my truck dirty!
For rags we use the ones below from McMaster Carr. I first bought the bucket, and afterwards just buy replacement rolls. Including shipping, the rags cost about .013/ea.
McMaster-Carr P/N 70585T5
We buy rags at Sam's, i think around $0.15ea.In years past we took them to the dry cleaners however the last time we took them it cost more a pcs. then the rags cost, so we will probably will just pitch them this year and buy more new ones.This has worked well for us.Later Jason.
Cheap rags / towles
Just thought of this; when I worked and in animal health care we would go through a lot of towlels (bathing, beding etc). we would buy 50# of seconds from textile manufactures, back then they were dirt cheap. Used them until they were thrashed and can 'em. You also need to take into account eletricity for washing, gas for drying, time, detergent, upfront equipment cost, and maintenace on equipment. Crunch some numbers and see were you end up. 10 k is a lot so the idea sounds good plus you get to depericate the washer dryer.
Ive got 5 of us on the boilersuit laundry at my place in the UK. The overalls company provides very good quality ones, with my company logo on them 'free' (3 sets each) , then we are contracted to have one set washed once a week (they collect and return in the price), so they are in rotation. Its about $5 a wash, ie $100 a month to have us looking looking clean and smart. The on site lads have a few extra sets that we paid for, they can wash as many items per week as they need (want) to - we just pay the laundry fee.
Same company does the blue cloth roller towels for a few dollars a week. We buy the rag 'wipes' from them for about a buck a pound. The qty of wipes we go through is directly proportional to the amount I buy -
I think the above is great value, and if I had to worry at those prices there would be something seriously wrong with my company!! (though I do sometimes collect up the dirty rags I dont think are dirty enough and put them to one side for when a sump needs cleaning - part scottish, you cant change genetics!)
I'm buying my work clothes at local flea markets.
They sell used, good condition pants, shirts and even shorts for summer. These come from a uniform company with name tags and logos removed.
Shirts or shorts- 5 for $10. pants 3 for $10. sometimes I have to check back for good ones or right size.
I like the blue colored ones. They wash easily in a washing machine.