SOLVED: How to Get Diesel Smell Out of Clothes

How Tos & Tips

How to Get Diesel Smell Out of Clothes

Having a nice, big travel trailer or fifth wheel means you’ll need some way to tow such a large RV. In fact, many modern towable RVs are so large and heavy that only a diesel truck can truly get the job done right.

Diesel trucks are fabulous for towing. Unfortunately, they also come with their fair share of cons. For instance, maintenance and repairs for a diesel pickup require special mechanics, and they often cost a pretty penny besides. On top of that, big diesel trucks can be difficult to park.

However, one of the most common issues people run into when it comes to their diesel vehicles is the smell and stains left behind by diesel fuel. If you’ve ever gotten diesel fuel on your clothing or in your truck, you know exactly what we’re talking about.

Diesel in the US has a high sulphur content. As we all know, sulfur is awful to smell, meaning diesel fuel is no bed of roses either. This terrible smell leads many to wonder how to get diesel smell out of clothes.

Fortunately, there are ways to go about this. In this article we will talk about how to get diesel out of clothing and leave your shirts smelling and looking fresh once again.

Diesel smell

4 Steps to Removing Diesel Fuel Out of Clothes

When it comes to figuring out how to get diesel fuel out of clothes, there are several things you can try. In fact, there are countless ideas floating around—some of them work some of the time, and some never work.

Since you’ll obviously want the best methods possible, we’ve compiled the most effective options for how to remove diesel smell from clothes below.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

The first option is also the most natural choice. Therefore, if you’re hoping to avoid chemicals, baking soda and vinegar should be your first line of defense.

To use this method, simply add ⅓ cup vinegar and ⅓ cup baking soda to your laundry along with your regular detergent and wash. Admittedly, this isn’t the most effective method, meaning you may have to wash your clothes more than once to completely remove the smell, but it should get the job done in most cases.

Baking Soda and Coke

The second option is a bit odd, and many may not be brave enough to give it a try. That said, it is surprisingly effective, and if you have both baking soda and Coca-Cola close at hand, it’s worth a shot.

First, add a cup of Tide detergent to a tub of warm water. Let your diesel-tainted clothes sit in this tub for a couple of hours before draining the water and rinsing the clothes. Refill the tub with clean water, a 2-liter of Coke, and a whole box of baking soda. Mix everything well, add the clothes, and let them soak for at least 12 hours before running them through the wash as usual.


If Listerine can remove bad smells from your mouth, we see no reason why it can’t do the same for your clothes. In fact, some firemen use this method to remove smoke smell from their clothing after fighting a fire.

Add a half-cup of Listerine to your washing machine along with your regular detergent and wash. Not only will this help remove smells from your clothes, it’ll also help clean your machine. If the smell isn’t quite gone after the initial wash, run everything through again with another splash of Listerine.

Fast Orange

Fast Orange is our favorite answer to how to get diesel out of clothes. Technically, this product is for cleaning grease from your hands, but it can be used on clothing safely. It can be found on Amazon or at Walmart, it works consistently, and it removes both the smell and the nasty stains left behind by diesel fuel.

All you have to do is put a splash of this stuff in your laundry alongside your detergent and your clothes will come out smelling and looking like new.

Diesel smell

More Tips and Tricks for Removing Diesel Smell and Stains

Need to know a bit more than just how to remove diesel smell from clothes? We’ve got you covered. Below are some extra tips and tricks for dealing with diesel messes.

Removing Diesel Stains

If you have a diesel smell in your clothes, there’s a good chance you have a stain or two as well. As mentioned before, Fast Orange should remove those stains. That said, if you’re looking for other options, we recommend giving Shout or BIZ a try.

Grease Stain Don’ts

If you do have diesel grease stains, there are a few things you definitely should not do:

  • Don’t use chlorine bleach on the stains.
  • Avoid putting stained clothes in the dryer.
  • Do not wash stained items with unstained items.

Cleaning Diesel Smell from a Vehicle

Sometimes diesel is just sneaky enough to make its way into your vehicle. This can stink up a whole truck in no time flat, making driving the vehicle absolutely miserable. If this happens to you, getting the smell out is likely to make its way straight to the top of your to-do list.

Fortunately, it is possible to remove diesel smells from vehicles. Fast Orange is, once again, our go-to for this. Just find the spill, put some Fast Orange on a rag, and scrub the smell away.

Diesel smells and stains can be tough. That said, if you know how to go about it, removing these smells and stains is possible. Using these tips and tricks will likely save several shirts during the lifetime of your vehicle, something every diesel owner is sure to be happy about.

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