San Jose City College (SJCC), one of the oldest community colleges in California, touts a new catchall for “all things movement.” The 38,990-square-foot Jaguar Sports Center (the campus athletic hub) supports 10 sports teams; multiple movement classes, including kickboxing, yoga, weight training, archery and body sculpting; a new gym, fitness center, spin room, locker rooms, yoga area, training room, team rooms, and equipment storage room; as well as a laundry room and system specifically engineered to tackle dirty athletic uniforms, loops, towels, warmups, helmets, and pads.
Improved Laundry Production Equates to Less Time Spent on Laundry
Jennifer Deatherage, who oversees all of the center’s kinesiology classes, equipment and laundry processing, is especially fond of the college’s new Sports Laundry System®. Thanks to its central location, high-extract speeds, larger capacity, and soft-mount design, it’s shaved hours off her day. “It used to take me all day to do laundry,” she said. “My only break was lunch.”
Armed with “her” Sports Laundry System, which consists of two 60-pound capacity soft-mount washers and two 45-pound capacity dual-pocket stack dryers, Deatherage and her student helpers complete 120 pounds of laundry in 35 to 40 minutes. “It cuts my day down by 75 percent,” she said. “We are really lucky.”
But, she did her due diligence early on when the Jaguar Sports Center was still in the planning stages. “I attended the Athletic Equipment Managers Association convention, in Las Vegas, so I could find out how to improve equipment and procedures,” she said.
That’s where she met Sports Laundry Systems National Sales Manager Steve Leib. “I met with Steve about the system and our needs,” said Deatherage. “Then he visited campus to discuss laundry options.”
Installation, Chemical Injection & Operation
The Sports Laundry System was later installed by Scott Mossholder, of Taylor Houseman, a laundry equipment distributor in Pittsburg, Calif. It’s programmed to wash a variety of athletic items—from socks, loops and towels, to uniforms, practice gear, game jackets, and warmups. It also features automatic chemical injection, which ensures a precise mix of chemicals is injected into the wash cycle at the appropriate time, according to Deatherage. “We know that it’s set to the correct amount of chemical,” she said. “We could damage items if we put too much in there. Just what is needed is dispersed. It also makes it more cost effective for us.”
Every facet of the wash cycle is controlled, including water levels and temperatures, rotation action, extract speeds, number of baths, and more This makes it possible to wash helmets and pads, as well. To operate the washer, Deatherage loads, enters a program number, and presses start.
Soft-Mount Design Perks
“There’s no rumbling, even though the washers reach really high extract speeds,” she said. This is thanks to a soft-mount design and sophisticated multi-dimensional spring system. Unlike hard-mount washers, which must be bolted to a reinforced concrete foundation, the soft-mount Sports Laundry System slides easily into place without bolts. This not only makes for a quiet laundry room, it allows it to reach extract speeds up to 400 G-force. Hard-mount washers, by comparison, typically generate 75 to 200 G-force. As G-force increases, so does the amount of moisture removed from each washer load. When more moisture is removed, laundry takes significantly less time to dry. This contributes to greater laundry productivity, longer uniform life, and lower utility costs. Deatherage witnesses this first hand. “Some of my gear comes out of the washer nearly dry,” she said.
Potential for Ozone Disinfection
And, thanks to the flexibility of the Sports Laundry System, it can be further improved to provide disinfection down the road, according to Deatherage. By disinfecting athletic laundry, SJCC can help prevent the spread of infection from contaminated laundry to athletes.
“It’s as simple as connecting an ozone disinfection tower,” said Leib. “The tower automatically injects ozone gas into the washer. Ozone is environmentally friendly and works with cold water to eliminate up to 99.9 percent of superbugs in the wash, including MRSA, hepatitis, and HIV. The side benefits are that laundry smells fresher, looks brighter and requires hardly any hot water. Cold water usage further lowers natural gas costs for the school.”
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