Removing Laundry Odors

Grumpy’s Tips To Remove General Clothing Odors

Nothing worse than doing a full load of laundry only to find that your clothes still smell bad. I really hate stubborn clothing odors that refuse to go away. The good news is that there are some additional steps you can do to your wash cycle to help.


Old Grumpy’s Quick Solution

  1. Make sure the odor is not from your washing equipment or water
  2. Add 1 cup of baking soda to your wash cycle to remove odors and remove stains
  3. Add 1/2 cup of vinegar to kill bacteria and act as a fabric softener
  4. Laundry boosters can be added for organic odors such as urine


Determine If Issue Is With Washer & Dryer

Make sure the source of the odor is not originating from your washing equipment.

Your water supply may be the cause of the odors. Hard water or large traces of sulfur in your water may be the case. Pay attention if you notice a slight scent while your clothes are wet that becomes stronger as the dryer heats up the minerals. A water softener or filtration system may be an easy solution.

Take a look at the Washer Machine Odors page and the Dryer Odors page for additional tips.


Grumpy Says: “Make sure the source of the odor is not originating from your washing equipment”



Odor Eliminators Solutions

If your odors are not originating from your washing equipment then that means you need to take some extra washing steps. Here are some tips to add to your wash cycle.

I frequently use Baking Soda because it works wonders at absorbing odors and cleaning. It’s same to use in your wash as a method to eliminate musty odors. As an added bonus the baking soda will also help remove stains during the wash. Add 1 cup of baking soda to a filled load and let it soak with the clothes for 30 minutes before starting the cycle.

Vinegar is a natural and safe solution to remove odors and help kill mold and bacteria. Don’t worry about the vinegar smell as it will dissipate after drying. Add 1/2 cup of white vinegar to a load and run a wash cycle. As a bonus, the vinegar will act as a natural fabric softener.

Consider using Borax as an additive to your normal detergent. Just add 1/2 cup along with your detergent and wash your laundry normally.

If you have a high concentration of sweat odors you may need to do a pre-treatment. Fill a bucket with warm water and 1/2 of salt. Soak the sweat-drenched clothes into the bucket overnight and then wash them normally.

Laundry boosters will help with organic odors such as urine, blood, or vomit. I suggest Nature’s Miracle Laundry Boost because it has active enzymes that breaking down the organic substances. Mix the solution with water and let your clothes soak for 15 minutes. Proceed with a normal wash. It is not recommended to use enzyme solutions with silk or wool items.

Another laundry booster I recommend is Odorzout. This is a commercial grade product that works well for strong odors such as gasoline and smoke.


Grumpy Says: “It is not recommended to use enzyme solutions with silk or wool items.”