How To Remove Bicycle Grease From Clothes

Love taking care of your bike but hate bike grease stains? Well, you are not alone, bike grease can be a pain to remove as they are one of the most stubborn stains to get rid of. There is nothing to worry about though, in this guide, we will show you how to remove bike grease stains using different kinds of methods. Read on to find out more!
We buy and receive free products to review, and may receive commissions from affiliate links. See our disclosure page for details.

When you own a bike, taking care of it and maintaining it becomes a daily habit. Although we run from it at the start, eventually we come to love the process, no matter how time-taking or complex it becomes. Cleaning your bike and being tidy while doing it are two impossible scenarios, and you are bound to get drenched in all that grease.

You can always change it to something easier and more relaxed while cleaning your bike, we would suggest discarded clothes or something else but even if you get grease stains on your clothes, what is the next step? How do you remove stubborn grease stains and what is the best way to stay safe from them? These are some of the questions that we will be answering in our guide today!

How Do You Get A Bike Grease Stain?

Even if you are fully safe while cleaning your bike, chances are that you would get a bike grease stain, it happens to everyone. Weekly maintenance or everyday chain cleaning will reward you with a disgusting grease stain on your fine piece of linen and getting it off will be nothing less of a grind.

Bicycle Repair

Some people are under the impression that removing bike grease from your clothes is impossible but that is incorrect. Although you are in for a grind, it is not impossible as many people have claimed it to be. 

Any professional rider or even casual ones will say that you are bound to get a drop of grease on your clothes if you ride your bike, does not matter daily or weekly. You cannot run away from it, but there are plenty of ways to be protected from it. No matter what kind of clothes you have on, you will be able to make them grease-free, you just have to start the treatment soon enough because if you put a delay then it would be a problem getting it off.

Related: Best Bike Chain Degreaser

Safety Tips To Administer Before Cleaning Clothes

The first thing you have to know is that bike grease stains will come off your bike, there is no need to be worried. It might take some grinding and even some time but it is not impossible to get those stains off and we say that from experience. 

You have to know that every kind of fabric will react differently to cleaning, especially when you are cleaning grease. Being careful is the first step, in the second step you have to read the care labels on your clothes, and they give instructions on how to clean them. Sometimes there are also special instructions, on what to follow in terms of bike grease.

If you have sensitive skin, then it is advised to always wear rubber gloves while cleaning your clothes. You don't want the chemicals on your hands as they could become a nasty business to deal with.

Cleaning Agents To Use For Grease 

You have to be very careful with the cleaning agents that you will be using. Not all of them will be usable on all the fabrics you have. We all know the normal agents to use like a dishwashing liquid but there are some great alternatives that you can also use. Here are some of them that you use:

  • Baking Soda
  • Shampoo
  • Soap
  • Washing Powder

You can use all of these products to treat the grease but the trick is to not put delay. You have to start cleaning them as soon as possible. If there is a delay or if you think that you can start cleaning them tomorrow then the problem will only get worse.

These were not just cleaning agents that you can use, these are also some great methods that you can use to clean the grease from your clothes. The problem always comes in methodology, many people don’t know what to apply and how to apply these cleaning agents but that is why we are here to help you out.

How To Use Dishwashing Liquid Against Grease 

Grease removal is not an easy job, even if it is a fresh stain, you need to move quickly and a dishwashing liquid is going to be your best bet if you are wearing cotton or synthetic fabrics. Here are the steps that you can follow to remove grease stains using a dishwashing liquid.

Dishwashing Liquid
Dishwashing Liquid

Put Some Dishwashing Liquid On Grease Stains 

You might think that a dishwashing liquid would only work properly on your cutlery, but that is wrong because it also works really well on your clothes against grease. If the grease stain is something ordinary then just apply a drop of that liquid and rinse properly, it should start getting cleaned.

If it is a stubborn stain then you can combine the dishwashing liquid with baking soda and apply that mixture to the stain. Don’t use your hands here, you can use a discarded toothbrush to rinse the mixture gently.

Use Cold Water To Rinse

After applying the mixture or just the liquid, you need to let it sit there for a while. Then put it through a cold water tap, the stain has to face down and the water needs to come from the back. This will clean the stain properly and make sure that nothing remains there.

Dry The Cloth According To Instructions

Now that you have washed the cloth, you need to dry it. You can hang it so it air dries or you can use a dryer, you can follow the instructions mentioned on your cloth from the manufacturer. If the stain is still there then you can follow the steps again until the stain is removed completely.

What To Do If The Grease Stain Has Dried?

This might seem tricky at first because tough grease stains are already hard to remove. If a stain has dried then you can use talcum or corn flour on the stain, this absorbs part of the stain which makes the cleaning process easier. After that, you can follow the steps that have been mentioned.

Important Note: It is a rare occurrence that the bike grain stain dries, but if it does then you should follow the above-mentioned method. Get the stain absorbed first and then clean it up properly.

How To Use Biological Laundry Detergent Against Grease

This is yet another effective method to get the grease stains out of synthetic fabrics. 

Apply The Washing Powder First

The first thing that you need to do is apply the washing powder to the grease stain. Rub it slowly and then let it just sit there for almost 15 minutes. Make sure that you rinse it properly first before letting it sit there.

Use Cold Water To Rinse

After you have applied the detergent to the cloth, you need to place it under a cold water tap. This is the same way as before, the water needs to wash the grease stain from the back so that it washes off properly.

Dry It Properly

Now that the washing has been done, it is time to dry it according to the instructions mentioned. You can do your laundry as you regularly do it, and there will be no problems. 

If you have delicate fabrics like silk or wool, then this type of method is not recommended. In these cases, we recommend giving the fabric to your local professional dry cleaner or washer.

How To Use Baking Soda Against Grease

For people that don’t want to use chemical products on their clothes for cleaning, they can always use baking soda. This method is great for a variety of reasons, you can use it on dried and fresh grease stains.

Baking Soda

Apply A Very Small Amount Of Baking Soda On The Grease Stain

Delicate fabrics as well as other fabrics react very well to baking soda. It just sucks out the grease stain like a vacuum, that is why you have to sprinkle a very small amount on the stain.

Let The Baking Soda Sit Through The Night 

There is no washing off the baking soda that easily, you have to let it sit through the night. When you wake up, you will notice that the baking soda has cleaned a good proportion of the grease stain. 

Wash and Dry 

Now that the baking soda has absorbed a lot of grease stain, it is time to wash it. You can wash and dry according to the care instructions on the label of the cloth. This is an incredibly effective way to wash the grease stains, try it out.

How To Use Bar Soap or Shampoo Against Grease

You can use either the shampoo or the bar soap on the cloth for bike grease stain removal. Let us discuss the shampoo method first, apply it to the stain, and then leave it be for a while. You need to use a shampoo that removes body oil, that will work the best here with stains.

You can also use the bar soap for stains and if it is a stubborn stain then we recommend using the laundry soap. In terms of regular bar soap, we recommend dipping the garment in water first, ammonia works too. Then wash it off with the bar soap. Laundry bar soaps and shampoos are different than regular soaps because they have a special agent in them for washing grease.

Now you need to rinse the garment, we recommend dipping it in a mixture of water and vinegar. We chose vinegar because it is already a natural cleaning agent, which also happens to be very powerful. Don’t combine the soap with the vinegar as this will also remove the alkaline portion in the soaps. When mixing water with vinegar, make sure there is more vinegar, the ratio should be 1:2.

All you have to do now is clean the garment as per the manufacturer’s instructions and dry it off. Let it dry naturally, if you use a dryer then chances are that the stains could become permanent.

Natural Ways To Fight Grease Stains 

If you are against the chemicals going in your clothes then there are natural methods that you can use to fight the stubborn grease stains. Citrus and water-based products are always great, try out these options as they really work well.

  • Lemon and Vinegar
  • Soap Made From Vegetable Oil
  • Baking Soda
  • Borax

Important Notice: Out of all of these methods, Borax is the most lethal one. Make sure that you keep it away from children and store it in a safe, cool, and dry place.


Getting grease out of your stains can be very nasty, especially if you are not prepared. There are a lot of ways to get the grease stains out but not all of them are effective as the ones we have listed. From covering how we get grease stains to actually treating them, we hope that the guide answered all of your questions. 

If you have any other questions then do reach out to us in the comments below!

For the latest content and updates please follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

Rhodes Perry

Rhodes Perry

Rhodes is a writer, social justice advocate, and passionate cyclist. He primarily spends his time in the saddle commuting or riding multi-day, self-supported tours, and volunteers time wrenching at his local bike coop.


Leave a Comment