Flight suits made of Nomex are flame retardant, which is important for flying some kinds of aircraft. However, they're not oil, dirt, or sweat retardant, so sooner or later they need a wash - a wash strong enough to remove all that muck.

Is there anything special you need to do to get them clean without losing their flame retardant quality?

  • $\begingroup$ If only there was a AutoRacing.SE, I'm certain you would get an answer there... $\endgroup$ – FreeMan Jul 4 '16 at 2:26
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    $\begingroup$ The Nomex cleaning products from Molecule Labs seem to be recommended. $\endgroup$ – dotancohen Jul 4 '16 at 10:01

Firstly to clarify:

What are the differences between “inherent” and “treated” flame resistant fabrics?

Inherently flame resistant fibers are materials that have flame resistance built into their chemical structures. Aramid fibers from companies like DuPont create inherently flame resistant fibers, with brands such as DuPont™ Kevlar® and DuPont™ Nomex®.....

With that information:

Laundering’s impact on flame resistance

An essential thing to keep in mind when assessing flame-resistant technologies is that inherent flame resistant properties cannot be washed out or damaged through exposure to chemicals in the workplace or laundering practices, whether at-home or commercial.

FR-treated garments, however, may be damaged by chlorine bleach, the combination of hydrogen peroxide (“oxygen bleach”) with hard water, or exposure to oxidizing chemicals in the workplace. Source

An extensive DuPoint Nomex Laundering Guide

For the 'treated' fabrics, reading this DuPont document might be interesting.

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    $\begingroup$ So essentially, cleaning a Nomex flight suit will make it more fire resistant, since you're washing out flammable dirt... $\endgroup$ – SQB Jul 4 '16 at 13:56
  • $\begingroup$ It would help if you added a quick summary of the DuPont (not DuPoint) Laundering guide, like saying that "DuPont recommends washing Nomex separately using heavy duty detergent in soft water to ensure that the washed suit is completely free of any flammable lint, dirt, or residue. If necessary Nomex can be ironed at a medium setting" $\endgroup$ – Cody P Jul 7 '16 at 19:25

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