From dirty to clean, fabric care facility saves money

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Anthony Sanchelli
  • 39th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
As budget cuts hit closer to home for many installations, Incirlik's fabric care facility plays a major role in saving money and reducing the Air Force's environmental impact.

"We (receive) thousands of dirty linen, and in the afternoon they come and get the clean linen," said Zafer Cetindemir, 39th Force Support Squadron fabric care facility manager. "We have the capacity of up to 120,000 pieces (of linen) a month, so we are one of the largest in terms of capacity in Turkey. On average, we do about 60,000 pieces per month."

The facility is one of only two Air Force owned and operated fabric care centers. The fabric care technicians there handle linen from on-base facilities such as lodging, the club, the bowling alley, the dining facility, fire department and honor guard. The facility also handles dry cleaning, as well as carpet, furniture and car interior cleaning.

To handle the large amounts of linen, the facility operates with 17 technicians and 125 machines. Of these 125 machines, the fabric care facility technicians self-constructed four from recycled parts, saving the Air Force thousands of dollars. These four machines include a hanger-making machine, trouser guard machine, garment bag sealer and a carpet rinsing and drying machine.

The hanger maker alone cut the price of hangers in half, saving the Air Force $3,000 annually, according to Cetindemir.

Employees of the fabric care facility reconstructed one machine in order to both save money and reduce the facilities impact on the environment.

"We converted (an old) dry cleaning machine into an earth friendly one," said Cetindemir. "With that project alone, we saved about $60,000."

In addition to independently completing money-saving projects, employees of the facility maintain all the equipment, enabling members from the 39th Civil Engineer Squadron to focus their efforts elsewhere.

"We have a mechanic team available here. We take care of all our machinery ourselves ... because we have very specialized machinery," said Cetindemir.

Being an Air Force fabric care facility, saving money and becoming more environmentally friendly is a part of the job for the 39th FSS fabric care technicians.

For more information about available services, call the fabric care facility at DSN 676-8161.