How to remove machine oil from clothes

Stains from machine oil are considered difficult to remove. But there are industrial and folk remedies that successfully cope with the removal of such dirt without a trace. At the same time, it does not matter whether they “show off” on work clothes, casual clothes or presentable suits of car owners.

Stain Removal Guide

The sooner you can start removing the stain from the machine oil, the better. But if you don’t have the right tools at hand, don’t try to remove it with a brush, handkerchief or napkins, even damp ones. The oil will only eat deeper into the fibers. When removing the stain, use the following recommendations:

  • Before starting work, test any selected cleaner on an inconspicuous area of ​​the fabric, for example, on an inner seam;
  • clean the stain moving from the edges to the center, otherwise it will simply spread over a larger area. But first it must be prepared for processing – remove dust and dirt from it;
  • do not forget about protective equipment, especially when working with strong-smelling or potent substances: protect your respiratory system and hands;
  • Place a non-fading fabric or thick paper under the stain on the reverse side to avoid staining clean areas of the clothing during work;
  • Do not put a soiled item into the washing machine without first treating it. The machine oil will only be absorbed into the fabric fibers more strongly.

How to remove fresh oil stains

Fresh stains can be removed using natural substances that can absorb and soak up dirt, as well as laundry soap, dishwashing liquid, and washing powder.


Sprinkle fine table salt on the oil stain and rub it in. Shake it off after half an hour and evaluate the result. Repeat the steps if necessary.

Talc, starch, tooth powder, soda, crushed chalk

After treating clothes with powder substances that absorb fats well, washing out machine oil will become much easier. The substances will degrease the surface as much as possible, but the effect will be noticeable only when applied to a fresh stain. What to do:

  1. Sprinkle the selected powder onto the stains.
  2. Leave for 1-2 hours. Brush off any residue.
  3. Wash clothes as usual.

The advantage of this method is its versatility. It can be used to clean delicate materials, denim, outerwear, including leather.

With an iron

You will need folk remedies that absorb fats again – talc, starch, tooth powder, chalk. How to use them in this case:

  1. Place a thick cloth napkin (paper sheets) under the stain from the back side. Cover it from above as well. If desired, to enhance the effect, pre-cover the stains with a thick layer of talc, tooth powder, crushed chalk, starch. When ironing, these substances become more effective in combating stains of oil origin.
  2. Iron the napkin with an iron heated to medium temperature. As the pads and cleaning agent are soaked, renew them.

Items with traces of machine oil remaining should not be dried on a radiator or with a hair dryer. This will further “fix” the stain on the fabric.

Laundry soap

Rub the stain generously with 72% soap. Soak the garment briefly in warm water. Then rinse. If the oil stain remains, rub it again with laundry soap and return it to clean warm water for a longer period.

Dishwashing gel

The product, due to its composition, copes well with traces of fat on dishes, which means it will also help to wash away stains from motor oil. This method can be used to clean delicate fabrics, but for white items it is better to choose a product without dye.

What to do: wet the stains with warm water, apply the gel to the stained area, rub it in a little. Leave it to act for 10-15 minutes. Rinse off the residue with warm water. Wash the item.

Washing powder

Take the required amount of powder, moisten it. If possible, mix it with dishwashing gel for greater effectiveness. Apply the gruel to the stain, rub with a brush until foam appears. Let it dry. Rub off the resulting dry crust with a brush. Send the item to the wash.

If the stains from machine oil are ingrained

Industrial stain removers

It’s good to have sprays or pencils, Antipyatin soap, Vanish stain removers on hand, with which you can forget about stains of various origins.

Specialized household chemicals should be used only in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, taking into account the color and composition of the fabric. For example, oxygen bleach is used only to remove traces of motor oil from white clothing.

Folk methods

If it was not possible to remove the stains immediately, then to remove them it is worth using strong chemicals. But not all of them can be used to clean things made of suede, leather, and delicate fabrics.

Most cleaners have a strong pungent smell, so the room should be well ventilated during work. Hands and respiratory organs should be protected.


A large group of strong substances include solvents, acetone, white spirit, refined gasoline from the hardware store, and nail polish remover.

How to proceed: soak a small piece of cloth or sponge in the selected product, rub the stain or apply it to it and leave it to act for 3-5 minutes.

And then wash to get rid of the smell and any remaining stains on the fabric. If the stain was on outerwear and you don’t plan to wash it anytime soon, rinse the cleaner with warm water and let the items air out.

Car shampoo

Quite an aggressive product, copes well with many types of dirt, including fuel oil stains. But it can only be used on items made of durable fabrics, such as jeans, work clothes, and only after preliminary testing.

If the fabric passes the test, then use a cotton pad (a piece of soft cloth) soaked in car shampoo to treat the stain and leave it for 30 minutes. After that, the product only needs to be washed.

Ammonia + turpentine

The method of application is simple. Mix the substances in equal proportions and apply to the stain with a sponge (cotton pad). After 30 minutes, wash the item in the usual way.

With the help of household chemicals or folk remedies, you can successfully clean even stubborn stains from machine oil from clothes. The main thing is to choose the right cleaner so as not to damage the color and texture of the fabric. But if there is even the slightest risk of ruining the product, it is better to contact a dry cleaner.

Abbas Jahangir

I am a researcher and writer with a background in food and nutritional science. I am the founder of, our reputable online platform offering scientifically-backed articles on health, food, nutrition, kitchen tips, recipes, diet, and fitness. With a commitment to providing accurate and reliable information, we strive to empower our readers to make informed decisions about their health and lifestyle choices. Join us on's journey toward a healthier and happier lifestyle.

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