Our washing unit in Graulhet

Our laundry service in Graulhet, France was established in 2013. Several fire departments had specified their need for an efficient cleaning service that would offer a qualitative washing service while respecting the firefighter suits and its innovative assemblies, striping and details. In addition, the service would need the right knowledge to repair the suits. Sioen France answered those needs with the establishment of the washing unit in Graulhet.

Washing firefighter suits is of major importance for the safety of the firemen wearing it during interventions and to keep the suit operational. Sioen has more than 40 years of experience in designing and manufacturing innovative intervention garments. Therefore, we offer the needed experience and knowledge to also guarantee your safety after delivering the new suits.

The BMPM (Marseille), as well as many other French SDIS (departmental fire services) trust us with the washing, repair and decontamination of their garments.


Sioen: A tired firefighter is sitting on the ground in full firefighter garments after an intervention
©Sylvia Borel - BSPP

Our R&D team has performed a study on how firefighter garments should be washed to be able to correctly decontaminate them. Decontamination is very important, as a firefighter suit absorbs harmful substances during a fire intervention. Our R&D engineers studied our own fabrics and membranes and how they should be washed to decontaminate them. Therefore, you can be sure that our washing unit in Graulhet washes your garments in the correct way.

Please contact us for more information about this study.

Washing process

Sioen - The Sioen mobile washing unit is pictured next to a fire engine

We offer around 15 specific programs adapted to the level and type of soiling of the garments. Those programs were perfected to address the issue of contamination.

The washing process starts with the dirty and contaminated firefighter suits that are delivered at the washing unit in Graulhet. Before washing the garments, they are identified, the zippers and ‘Velcro’ fasteners are closed and the level of soiling is determined.

The firefighter suits are then washed and dried two times, as it takes quite some time to dry a fire suit. It is important not to put too much weight into the washing machine to keep the process highly qualitative. In addition, meticulous rinsing is essential to remove all detergent residual. Further, the garments are re-impregnated by adding an extra detergent after rinsing the suits. The re-impregnation is strengthened by ironing the garments afterwards.

Once the fire garments are dry, they are visually inspected. We look at whether all zippers, striping, etc. still is operational. If not, they are repaired. When a certain part of the suit has burned spots, the different layers of the assembly are analysed and the level of damage is determined. If the membrane is damaged, the suit cannot be used for interventions any longer and the suit is recycled.

Track-and-trace log system

Thanks to our smart track-and-trace log system, fire suits can be identified easily. In addition, for fire departments that wish to do so, we keep a record of the number of times their garments were cleaned and repaired. Finally, an overview is given of the suits that need a replacement.