Getting oil on your clothes is a huge hassle, especially if the oil doesn't come out in the wash and then stains the dryer. Depending on the type of oil, it can leave a sticky, slimy and smelly mess. Fortunately, it isn't too difficult to deal with that mess in the dryer. Whether the oil is in the dryer or there are oil stains on clothes, you can remove the odors and stain.
Getting Oil Out of the Dryer
If you have oil in your dryer and it's causing a stink, you will want to remove the smell from the clothes dryer. Combine equal parts white vinegar and warm water in a spray bottle and then spray the mixture generously throughout the inside of the dryer. Wipe the dryer with a clean cloth. Next, mix a small amount of dish detergent with warm water in a bucket and thoroughly wash the inside of the dryer with it using rags or a sponge. Don't worry about getting the dryer wet.
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Add old towels to the dryer and run it for about an hour. When the cycle completes, remove the towels and launder them if necessary. If dryer oil is still a problem, repeat these steps until you have entirely removed the smell and stains from the dryer. You will want to double-check that these are gone before using the machine normally. If you don't, any residual odor could transfer to your clothes.
How to Remove Oil Stains and Smell From Clothes
If you remove your clothes from the dryer and they are still stained or have an odor, don't fret – there are a couple methods for how to remove the smell of grease from clothes, how to get vegetable oil out of clothes and how to get car oil out of clothes. The best substance to use in this case is grease-cutting dish detergent. Be sure to use a brand formulated to tackle grease that is also mild and without dyes.
Squirt a couple of drops onto the stain and then wet it with a few drops of water. Fold the garment over itself and rub the stain vigorously for a couple of minutes. Set the garment aside for about an hour and then use a paper towel to wipe off the soap. Launder the garment in the washing machine but do not put it back in the dryer.
If the stain remains once the item has been air-dried, repeat these steps. If repeated attempts don't work, it's probably time to take it to a dry cleaner to see if it can salvage the article of clothing.
Prevent Oily Messes in the Laundry
The best thing you can do is prevent oil and other damaging substances from getting in your dryer in the first place. That way, you don't have to worry about knowing how to clean a smelly dryer. Always treat oil stains and other smelly stains by hand before laundering. This cleaning is especially important for oil since it is not water-soluble, meaning it doesn't dissolve in water. Additionally, oil stains can worsen when exposed to heat.
You can use the dish detergent method to remove oil stains from clothes before washing them. You'll almost certainly have better luck salvaging the garment if you thoroughly remove the stain before washing and drying in the machine. Finally, you should always air dry garments with oil on them, even if you think you got all of it out. The dryer's heat easily transfers any residual oil to the dryer itself, creating another mess.