Bike grease is one of the most stubborn forms of stains you can get. If you’ve ever owned a bike, you know just how difficult it can be to get that smudge off your linen. And it doesn’t take much to get a grease stain; routine maintenance on your bike, a tire change or chain adjustment is just the kind of things that can leave you with a distasteful dirt mark on your t-shirt, jeans or cycling shirt.
Fortunately, getting rid of those tough grease stains from your clothes is not entirely impossible. I have a number of essential grease removal tips that will interest you.
How to get bike grease out of clothes! Apply dish-washing fluid on the grease stain, then, scrub it with an old toothbrush. Rinse the garment with cold water before washing it with laundry detergent. Depending on the type of fabric, you can use the same method to remove grease stains by applying alternative cleaning agents such as:
- Washing powder
- Shampoo/Bar Soap
- Baking Soda
- Spot Remover
In this article, you will learn about the various methods that will help you to eliminate those hideous grease stains from the many different types of linen that you wear every day.
Any experienced biker will agree that it is practically impossible to make it through a routine day of riding without getting a tiny bit of bike chain grease on your pants or jeans.
Whichever type of fabric you are wearing, the trick to getting rid of that greasy stain is to start treating it as soon as possible. Remember that the longer it stays on your linen, the tougher it will be to remove.
Given that every fabric reacts differently to cleaning, the best option for grease removal will, of course, differ among your variety of clothing. As such I suggest you check the care label on your garments before you select a stain removal method.
This way, you will avoid the various wash settings that aren’t suitable for the fabric and get the results you are after. If in doubt and if possible, try to experiment with a hidden stained section of the garment to see how it works before you treat the whole stain.
Safety Tip for Sensitive Skin: Please wear rubber gloves when applying these methods if you have soft or sensitive hands.
With that said, let us consider the various methods you can use, to rid your clothes of those stubborn, hideous, grease stains:
How to Remove Grease Stains Using Dishwashing Liquid
Dishwashing liquid will be the best option when treating bike grease stains on cotton and synthetic fabrics. Try the following method:
Step 1: Apply a tiny drop of dishwashing fluid on the grease stain -Most people don’t know this, but the same way it breaks down grease and oil stains on your dishes, your everyday dishwashing fluid will also remove bike grease marks on your clothes. If you are dealing with very stubborn grease stains, try using a thick paste containing a mixture of dishwashing liquid and a little baking soda. Find an old toothbrush and use it to gently rub the paste into the stain.
Step 2: Rinse the stain with cold water -Allow the fabric to sit for about two minutes then place it under a running cold water tap for a few minutes with the grease-stained part facing down. This is to ensure that the water is running through the back of the grease patch to the front.
Step 3: Wash your piece of clothing according to instructions on the care label -Hang your piece of attire and allow it to air-dry as you check on the stain to see if it has disappeared. If it doesn’t, repeat the steps above until the stain is gone. Remember never to tumble dry your grease-stained fabric; the heat will set the stain on the fabric and make it permanent.
If you are trying to treat a dried bike grease stain, you want to apply a small amount of talcum or corn flour on the stain and let it sit for about five minutes before proceeding with the process I have described above. The powder tends to absorb some of the grease stain, which can easily be brushed off.
How to Remove Grease Stains Using Biological Laundry Detergent
This method of bike grease removal is best suited for dealing with stains on synthetic fabrics; whether fresh or dry. Follow the process below:
Step 1: Use the washing powder as a pre-treatment -Apply a tiny amount of the washing powder on the grease stain and slowly rub it in using the underside of a dosing ball. Allow it to sit for about five to fifteen minutes.
Step 2: Rinse the stain with cold water -Place the stained garment under a tap and let the cold water run through the back of the stain to the front so that the grease is eliminated.
Step 3: Wash and dry naturally -Wash the piece of clothing as you would during your regular laundry and remember to consider the washing guidelines on the care label. Allow the garment to dry in the air.
Tip: This grease removal process is not recommended for delicate fabrics like silk or wool. Always read the care label to know the fabric on your stained clothes and if unsure, consult a professional dry cleaner; especially if the method of washing is restricted to dry cleaning.
How to Remove Grease Stains Using Baking Soda
Baking soda is a great natural product you can use as an alternative to chemical options. It is best for fresh and dried grease stains on delicate material like wool and silk.
Step 1: Sprinkle a small amount of baking soda onto the grease stain -Baking powder is a great grease remover when dealing with delicate fabrics. This is because it draws out the grease from the material without damaging the fibers.
Step 2: Let the baking soda sit overnight -Allow it to sit through the night and brush it off in the morning. You will notice that the baking soda has absorbed a significant portion of the grease.
Step 3: Wash the garment -Wash your piece of clothing according to guidelines given on the care label. If you are treating delicate fabrics, try hand washing with detergent. Any doubt regarding the suitability of your garment for this method should be clarified by a dry cleaning expert.
How to Remove Grease Using Shampoo or Bar Soap
Step 1: Cover the grease spot with shampoo/bar soap -Apply the shampoo on the grease stain and let it sit. Considering that shampoo is designed to remove body oils, it should work quite well for grease stains too. Alternatively, you can use any hand or body bar soap. Use laundry soap for tougher grease stains.
Dampen the garment with water or ammonia then rub the bar soap on the stain until it starts to foam. You can also choose to grate the bar soap and apply the resulting powder on the wet grease stain. Laundry bar soaps and shampoo have a special agent that fights the grease.
If you are dealing with stubborn stains, use an old toothbrush to scrub the grease mark as opposed to rubbing it with your hand.
Step 2: Rinse the garment -Dip the stained garment section in a mixture of water and vinegar then use the old toothbrush to scrub off the grease stain. Vinegar is a natural cleaning agent that is applied in a variety of ways. It functions to remove the alkalinity in soaps, so avoid using soaps or detergents along with the vinegar. The vinegar-water mixture should be mixed in a ratio of 1:2.
Step 3: Wash the garment -Wash the greased piece of garment with laundry detergent while considering the manufacturer’s washing guidelines. Allow the piece of clothing to air dry; drying in a hot mechanical dryer can cause any leftover grease stains to set into the garment and become permanent.
Tip: If you feel that the grease has not been effectively eliminated, repeat the above process for a better result.
Grease Removal Using Spot Remover and Hot Water
Step 1: Spray the grease stain -Spray the spot remover on the greased section and use a toothbrush to scrub off the stain. Allow the remover to set in as you boil water in a pot.
Step 2: Pour hot water on the garment -Put the piece of clothing in a bucket or deep tub or washbasin and pour the boiled water all over the garment. Ensure that you pour the pot of water from a high point to facilitate the breaking down of grease bonds. The higher you pour the water from, the more force it will generate while hitting the garment.
It goes without saying that you will have to be extra careful when pouring the hot, scalding water. Try to avoid any splattering water; you do not want to get burnt by scalding water, which is why a deep receptacle is best for this method.
Step 3: Repeat for all grease stains -Turn the piece of garment inside out and repeat the process with the hot water, just like you did the first time.
Step 4: Wash the garment -With the washing guidelines in mind, wash your piece of clothing using laundry detergent then allow it to air-dry.
What Natural Ways can I Use to Remove Grease Stains?
Cleaning grease stains does not always necessitate harmful chemical detergents. It doesn’t hurt to be mindful of the environment’s welfare so you can choose to use organic cleansing alternatives. However, when searching for natural grease removal products, look for citrus or water-based products.
If you’re able to, you can ensure the safety and quality of the ingredients in your cleaning agent by making them yourself. Below are examples of organic grease cleaning agents you can make and/or use:
Vegetable Oil-based Soap
You can apply liquid plant-based soap like caster or other mild soaps extracted from organic vegetable oils to get rid of grease stains.
Alternatively, you may use soaps from organic coconut oil. Rub the vegetable oil-based soap on the greasy spot with a soft brush and rinse the garment with warm water. Add a few drops of organic lavender, lemon, or orange into the soap for a mild and refreshing scent.
Lemon and Vinegar
Lemon and vinegar are a great natural option you can utilize. They both have acidic properties that break the grease bonds, helping to lighten the stain. Mix the vinegar or lemon juice with vegetable-based soap in equal amounts to enhance the grease-removal powers.
Borax is another natural compound that has similar qualities to baking soda. It dissolves in water and happens to be more corrosive and stronger than baking soda. Make a paste from lemon juice and borax to cleanse your grease stain. You can often find the borax in your local laundry or grocery store.
Tip: Borax can be extremely lethal when ingested. Be sure to keep it out of the reach of children.
Also known as sodium bicarbonate, baking soda is a natural, non-toxic mineral that you can buy in supermarkets. It naturally sucks in the grease and any odor left on the garment. Use a mix of baking soda and vegetable oil-based soap to brush off the grease spot. Rinse the piece of garment in warm water before allowing it to air-dry.
Grease stains from your bike need not be permanent! With the right ingredients and removal approach, you should be able to eliminate those ugly greasy stains without breaking a sweat. Use the above guide to help you fight the grease stains on your clothes. Good luck.