There are 2 primary reasons why your pants might smell after dry cleaning....
1. WATER-BASED STAINS
There are 2 primary types of stains: oil-based stains (such as body oils, lotions, creams, salad dressing, steak sauce, pizza drippings, etc.) and water-based stains (such as juice, beer, wine, perspiration, urine, etc.). Dry cleaning is excellent at emulsifying/dissolving oil-based stains but does absolutely nothing for water-based stains. Water-based stains must be removed by a dry cleaning technician BEFORE the garment ever enters the dry cleaning machine.
Given that the overwhelming majority of cleaners just load their dry cleaning machine and hope for the best, is it any wonder why water-based stains (which constitute the majority of stains a dry cleaner sees) remain in or on your garments?
For more information on this subject...
Blog post: My dry cleaned garments still smell of perspiration! Why?
Blog link: http://www.ravefabricare.com/true-quality-cleaning/2010/7/27/my-dry-cleaned-garments-still-smell-of-perspiration!.aspx
2. DIRTY DRY CLEANING SOLVENT/FLUID
All garments must be cleaned in dry cleaning solvent or fluid that is as clear as bottled water. Which means that you clean and purify/distill, clean and purify/distill, clean and purify/distill...all day long. You can't clean, clean, clean, clean all day long and then purify once or twice a week.
As I explained above, dry cleaning solvent/fluid is an emulsifier of oils. So if you don't continuously clean and purify all day long, the oils and fats that are emulsified by the dry cleaning solvent/fluid build up in the solvent/fluid. Your garments, particularly those made of natural fibers such as wool, cotton, linen, silk, etc., then absorb that gunk from the solvent/fluid like a sponge. That's why your dry cleaned garments smell. It's like washing your clothes in the effluent from your dishwasher.
For more information on this subject....
Blog post: My dry cleaned garments smell of dry cleaning solvent! Why?
Blog link: http://www.ravefabricare.com/true-quality-cleaning/2010/9/10/my-dry-cleaned-garments-smell-of-dry-cleaning-solvent!-why.aspx
Bottom line: You mention that you like your dry cleaner. Smiles and greetings are the icing on the cake but are meaningless in the absence of technical competence. That would be like selecting a bespoke tailor on the basis that he (or she) is a "nice guy". Clearly, your cleaner has zero command of the most basic fundamentals of garment care.
It's time to change outfits. Dry cleaning outfits.Edited by stubloom - 6/16/12 at 7:47pm