16 ways to remove engine oil stains

When repairing a car or Bicycle, it is easy to put a stain on clothes from machine oil. But getting rid of it is very difficult. Especially if you start displaying it not immediately, but after a while. Conventional detergents and stain removers will not help to cope with this problem. But our experts have learned and tested the effectiveness of several ways to remove engine oil stains and are in a hurry to share them. With the same tools, you can remove traces of any oil-and-oil contamination: motor oils, technical lubricants, fuel oil, etc.

Basic rules for removing oil stains

16 ways to remove engine oil stains

Machine oil is a General concept that includes not only a light-colored oily liquid used to lubricate door hinges, Bicycle chains, or sewing machine mechanisms, but also darker and thicker automotive engine oil (motor oil) and various lubricants (solid and liquid).

There are three types of engine oils:

mineral-based on oil with subsequent distillation and purification;

synthetic – based on synthetic hydrocarbons obtained from refined petroleum products;

semi-synthetic – based on no more than 20% synthetic components.

Thus, any oil consists of petroleum products and has a high chemical stability, firmly eating into the fabric fibers. That is why it is very difficult to remove it – it is necessary to use solvents or strong alkalis.

If an oil-and-oil stain appears on your clothes, then to remove it without traces, you need to follow several rules.

Start removing the contamination as soon as possible, preferably in the first few minutes. Only fresh oily spots can be removed with fat-dissolving agents.

To prevent the spread of the stain over a large area, you should, as far as possible, pour salt, soda, crushed chalk, starch on it. These powders have absorbent properties and will quickly absorb most of the oil. You can increase their effectiveness by preheating them to 50-60 0 C in a microwave oven or in a frying pan.

You can not wash or soak things in hot water if the oily spots were not previously treated with adsorbents – the size of the contaminated area may increase.

Before processing in any way, you should put a substrate under the contaminated area – a towel rolled up several times. So the oil after dissolution will not pollute the clean surface of the product.

When removing old oil stains with solvents from delicate fabrics or painted items, you should first check how they will affect the material and paint in an inconspicuous area of the product, and only then apply the product.

When working with solvents, care should be taken: wear strong rubber gloves, a respirator, and safety glasses. In addition, it is important to keep in mind that these products are highly flammable, so you need to clean things away from open flames.

Stain removal using industrial tools

Engine oil stains are hard-to-remove dirt that cannot be removed with conventional stain removers and washing powder. That is why the developed special industrial means for their removal:

Dr. Beckmann-stain remover from engine oil, grease and bitumen, 50 ml (Germany) – 130 rubles.

Mellerud-oil stain remover (Germany) 500 ml – 650 rubles.

Duty Oil-liquid for removing technical oils, lubricants and petroleum products, 5 liters (Russia) – 1000 rubles.

Pro-Brite Axel-6 Oil & Grease Remover-aerosol for removing stains from vegetable and industrial oils (Russia), 300 ml – 350 rubles.

CLEANMULTI FORTE Pramol-alkaline cleaner for removing fat and oil (Switzerland), 1 l – 550 rubles.

All products contain a special combination of solvents and non-inogenic Surfactants for fast and effective removal of oil and oil contamination.

People who constantly encounter machines and various mechanisms by their type of activity need to have one of the tools at hand. They are guaranteed to help remove even old traces of lubricants, machine or engine oil.

Traditional methods of removal

16 ways to remove engine oil stains

If there is no special tool that removes traces of engine oil, then you should not rush to the store to buy it. First, you need to try using improvised tools and solvents that can be found at home or purchased at any hardware store.

How to remove fresh stains

If less than an hour has passed since the time of contamination of clothing, then oil and oil contamination can be removed using the following methods. They are suitable for all types of fabrics, white and colored things:

Laundry soap (72%).Moisten the soiled area with hot water and RUB it liberally with soap. After 30 minutes, clean the stain with a brush and wash it off.

Dishwashing liquid. Undiluted water, pour the product on the contaminated area, leaving for 20-30 minutes. Before washing off the liquid, RUB it with a brush.

Ammonia.For delicate fabrics, dilute ammonia in water in a ratio of 1: 1. on products made of cotton and linen, you can apply it without diluting it. Leave the ammonia in place for 15-20 minutes, then RUB it with a sponge and wash it off with water.

Bile soap(or a liquid stain remover based on it). Contains fatty acids and bovine bile, which are good at removing oil stains. Treat the engine oil residue with soap (until a rich foam forms), wait 40-60 minutes, RUB with a brush and rinse with water.

Ethyl alcohol.RUB the oil and oil contamination with a swab soaked in alcohol until the traces completely disappear.

After treating clothes soiled with machine oil in any of the ways, it is necessary to wash them with detergent in the washing machine or manually.

A tip! Before removing an oily stain, you should iron the soiled area through tracing paper or parchment paper with an iron (set the temperature according to the type of fabric). Some of the oil will be absorbed into the paper, and it will be easier to remove the stain.

How to remove old traces

To remove oil stains that are already deeply absorbed into the fabric fibers, it is necessary to use solvents. But keep in mind that most of them are not suitable for silk, wool, synthetics, or colored items. In total, we have found 5 effective ways to remove old stains:

Refined gasoline.It is best used for cleaning delicate and colored fabrics. It is based on oil, as well as in engine oil, so it will dissolve it and help to get rid of stains on clothes. You should moisten a cotton pad or napkin with gasoline and gently RUB the soiled area with it. You can put the disc directly on the stain for 15-20 minutes, then clean it with a soft-lint brush.

Gasoline and dishwashing liquid (or baking soda). An even more gentle way to remove an old trace of engine oil. Mix the ingredients in a ratio of 1: 1 and apply the mixture to the stain for 30 minutes. After wiping the dirt with a brush, send the item to the Laundry.

Ammonia with turpentine.This combination is also safe for fine and natural fabrics, but it is not suitable for processing colored things. Mix both products in equal proportions and RUB the mixture into the contaminated area. After waiting 30 minutes, RUB the cloth with a brush and wash it off.

Solvent 646, acetone or white spirit. They are good at removing oil stains, but we recommend using them only for cleaning light cotton or linen fabrics. Wipe the stain with a cloth soaked in solvent until it disappears completely. To avoid leaving streaks, you need to clean, moving from the edges of the contaminated area to the center.

Kerosene.It is also an oil product that dissolves engine oil. With a cotton swab soaked in kerosene, you need to wipe the soiled place until the oil traces disappear. Then lather with household soap and rinse under running hot water. Immediately after processing, the product must be washed. Kerosene is not suitable for removing stains from colored items and clothing made of silk or synthetic materials.

After cleaning clothes from oil stains with solvents or ammonia, a specific unpleasant smell remains. You can get rid of it by washing the item with a linen conditioner and drying it in the open air.

Dry cleaning service

16 ways to remove engine oil stains

Fuel oil or motor oil stains are very difficult to remove. If none of the methods helps to eliminate contamination or there are doubts that you can save your favorite thing yourself, you can use the help of specialists.

Dry cleaning is a reliable way to get rid of traces of machine oil on clothes, which does not require any effort from you. Items made of any material will be provided with qualified assistance without the risk of spoiling it.


Due to the multicomponent composition of engine oil and the difficult-to-remove base from petroleum products, it is not easy to remove the traces left by it. But, using the advice of our experts, it is still possible to do this. If you do not postpone the processing and washing of soiled things in a long box, then the chances of saving it with the help of improvised means increase significantly. Only solvents or dry cleaning will help remove old oil and oil contamination.

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