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How to Remove Gasoline Odor from Clothes and Washer

Submit an Entry: Your Laundry Questions and Answers

By Bill Churchill

My Laundry Question

How can I get the gasoline smell out of my washer and my clothes.

Share a Little Background Info

I washed some mechanics rags with some jeans and shirts and other colors. Unfortunately the rags, 3 or 4, were wet with gasoline from a project I was working on.

I have a front load LG ultra capacity washing machine. Is there help for me and my clothes?

Lessons Learned

  • I loaded the machine, setting up a pre wash and heavy soil load. I ran the load and now all the clothes in the load smell of gasoline. I have since run the load 3 more times, again with heavy detergent, pre wash and heavy soil cycle. Each load takes over 2 hours. Still the gasoline smell.

Fabric Content of Item (if appropriate)

Mostly cottons, jeans, work and casual shirts

Mary Marlowe Leverette, About.com Laundry & Laundry Rooms, says:

This is a hard way to learn a lesson - no more gas soaked rags in the washer! The first thing to do is clean the washer. Gasoline is a petroleum product so there is an "oily" coating left on the inside of your washer. Follow the instructions here on how to clean the washer.

Once the washer is clean, wash the clothes again as usual but add 1 cup of white distilled vinegar to the rinse cycle. Dry the clothes outside if possible. If the odor remains, place the clothes in a plastic container with a box of baking soda; close the container tightly and allow them to stay for a couple of days. The baking soda will absorb the odor.

Good luck!

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