Dealing with Dirty Rags

Wondering if anyone knows of a safe and environmentally sound method for cleaning solvent and ink filled dirty rags/shop towels. I know I can hire an industrial laundry service, but I am such a small operation that this seems like overkill. Still I do not want to keep throwing away rags. And I’m concerned about 1) ruining my washing machine and 2) putting a bunch of toxic waste into my local water supply. Any ideas?

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Best bet is to see if you can find a local machine shop, garage, or print shop that already has a rag service. They may let you have some to use for free or a small price, then you can bring them back when dirty and the service will take them and clean them. Most places should let you drop off dirty rags if they are the standard rags the services provide. Shops pay the service by the bundle of new rags, so there’s no cost for them to add “extra” dirty rags to the barrel.

Good idea. Thanks.

Just take them to a laundromat. It wouldn’t protect the water supply, but at least you wouldn’t ruin your washing machine.