Occasionally a product may ship with an outline around the print, a sort-of rectangular mark on the garment fabric. This mark is absolutely nothing to worry about. Whilst it's not too common, it'll disappear the first time the garment is washed.
But we understand the concern our customers experience when their samples occasionally arrive with heat-press marks surrounding their print. Is it a fault with the product? With the print method? What if my customer complains about it? They're all valid questions, so let's give you some answers:
The printing method
The vast majority of products we print are not heat-pressed; they're dried through a tunnel dryer to cure inks and evaporate excess fixation solution. However, some products are printed using a method that involves heat pressing which can lead to marks appearing around the print. Both methods we use are DTG, it's the process that each method uses that's slightly different.
Regardless of the process used (whether the product is tunnel dried or heat pressed) the application of heat is a vital step. The heat cures the ink with the product, and without it your designs would simply rub off/wash out straight away (for DTG) or wouldn't transfer at all (for dye sublimation and vinyl).
This means any mark left on the fabric is not a fault, it's simply a side-effect of the printing process. And the reason for it involves pre-treatment, so any dye sublimation or vinyl products, and the vast majority of DTG printed products will never have heat-press marks since they don't need pre-treating.
Some DTG printed products need pre-treating, it depends on the printer being used to print them. It acts similar to the primer used before painting wood or drywall, stopping the ink being absorbed into the garment and offering a surface for it to adhere to.
The mark occasionally left by the heat-press is basically any excess pre-treatment that has no ink laid on top of it. The pretreatment flattens the fibres of the garment to allow for the best possible print so the mark you can see is the result of the fibres being flattened. This excess pretreatment will wash out straight away leaving no mark.
If your customer contacts you to ask about the mark on their garment we always advise you explain the above and recommend they wash their garment at 30 degrees, inside out. This will wash out any excess pre-treatment and the mark will disappear.
If they are still left unsatisfied after following these instructions get in touch with us and we'll work with you to resolve their complaint. You can send us an email, call our office on 01254 777 070 or send us a message using our Live Chat service.