How to Get Bike Grease Out of Clothes in 3 Ways

Unless your bicycle is meant for a show, it will inevitably come in contact with pollutants, chemicals, and other components in nature. As a result, the bike chain might come loose, rust, or a combination of the two. An easy and efficient fix for which would be the use of bicycle grease. However, it comes with a problem; learning how to get bike grease out of clothes.

Bicycle grease is a thick, tar-like material that helps maintain the efficacy of the bicycle chain. The chain in turn is one of the main working components of the bike. It transfers power from the pedals to the wheels. With repeated use, the chain tends to dislodge, rust, and loose working potential in numerous ways.

Bike grease has been looked to as the easiest way to overcome these difficulties and maintain the bike’s overall working capacity. Therefore, it’s practically impossible to never need bicycle grease. Inadvertently, bicycle owners are probably also familiar with just how difficult it can get to get rid of these stains.

How to Remove Bicycle Grease from Clothing

Learning how to remove bicycle grease from clothing might seem like a bother because bicycle grease stains are tough to get out, they can’t be put in the wash, they need to be hand-washed, and they don’t dry down immediately which means other areas can get grease stains on them too.

However, while understanding how to remove bike grease from clothes might seem impossible, it actually isn’t. In fact, most people would assume that how to get bicycle grease out of clothes requires special detergents and methods.

The truth is that you can remove bike grease stains from clothing using common household items, such as baking soda, detergent, washing liquid etc. 

All in all, how to get bike chain grease out of clothes when shortening chain is a lot less work than people make it out to be!

1. Using Dish Soap 

If you’ve noticed a grease stain on your shirt or trousers after routine maintenance of your bike, you’d probably be searching for how to remove bike grease stains from clothing.

Here’s the thing: the longer you wait, the grease would sort of incorporate itself into the clothing’s threads and texture. Making it more difficult to remove.

Instead, the very first thing you need to do is head on over to the kitchen! One of the easiest and also the most efficient ways is by using dish soap.

Here’s how:

  • Remove the article of clothing and place it in the sink.
  • Run it under tap water for a minute or less.
  • Place dish soap on the area of the stain and rub it in.
  • After rubbing it in for more than a minute or two, soak it in water for 10 minutes.
  • Run the article of clothing under warm or hot water after 10 minutes.
  • Rinse away the stain.

In some cases, you might need to re-apply the liquid detergent after the first instance of washing it.

This doesn’t mean the process failed because you would have probably noticed the stain seeming faded after the first wash. However, because of the type of stain or how long you waited, it might be a bit trickier for it to come off.

In any event, if you’re looking for ways on how to get bike grease out of clothes using dish soap comes at number one.

2. Using Baking Soda 

The second popular ingredient after the use of dish soap is a favorite – baking soda.

Again, the minute you realize there’s a grease stain on your clothes, don’t wait and head on over to the kitchen.

Baking soda has the property to ‘soak in’ stains. Basically, it pulls at stains that would have otherwise been impossible to wash away with ordinary detergent or washing powder.

Here’s how to get bike grease out of clothes such as wool or silk:

  • Remove the article of clothing and lightly damp it with water.
  • Pour some baking soda onto the stain directly.
  • Let it rest on the clothes for about 6 to 8 hours.
  • After 6-8 hours have passed, wipe it off.
  • Wash your delicate material (silk or wool) as instructed on the label.
  • It’s better to wash it by hand, but you could put it on a cycle in your washing machine.
  • Hang it out to dry.

Alternatively, here’s how to get bike grease out of clothes such as denim:

  • Remove the article of clothing and lightly damp it with water.
  • Make a thick, concentrated paste of baking soda.
  • Apply the paste onto the area of the stain using a toothbrush.
  • Scrub the area in circular motions with medium pressure.
  • Let it rest on the clothes for 6-8 hours.
  • After 6-8 hours have passed, wipe it off.
  • It’s better to wash it by hand, but you could wash it in the washing machine.
  • Hang it out to dry.

3. Using WD-40 

Here’s what you can do if they’re being extra stubborn:

  • Use WD-40 on the stain, even if it’s dry.
  • Let it sit for 30 minutes to allow it to rest into the garment.
  • Wash the area with hot water.
  • Afterward, cover the area of the stain with liquid detergent. Gently massage the liquid detergent into the stained area.
  • Let the detergent rest for 30 or so minutes.
  • Wash with hot water.
  • Assess the stain. Go over the entire procedure again if necessary.

Extra Tips

  • For cotton, wool, and natural fibers – light pressure, detergent, and directly applying baking soda.
  • For stubborn stains – thick paste of baking soda or WD-40 method.


In conclusion, bike grease stains can be tricky, but they aren’t impossible to get out. All it takes is a quick run to the kitchen or having WD-40 readily available and you’re good to go!

James Mattis

James is a passionate bicyclist who has done about every kind of biking there is. He loves the wind in his hair, the sun over his shoulder and maybe even the bugs in his teeth. No, just kidding about that last item. He isn’t crazy about road burns, either, but acknowledges that to have the good there is the occasional tumble. James feels that his bike is the place where he can unwind, leave troubles alongside the road, meet new people, go new places, and live the life of adventure that he loves. He is ready to share the ride with you.

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