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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Removing Mildew Smell From Clothes

My husband is so thoughtful.  He came up with another blog post for me – by leaving a load of towels in the washing machine for a week.  I walked into the laundry room after being gone and saw that the washing machine door was closed, and I knew what I was in for.  I opened the door and that funky mildew smell smacked me right in the face.  I examined them.  There was no evidence of mold.  But just because I couldn’t see it, doesn’t mean it wasn’t there -- especially if the fabric is dark.

I suspect that I’m not the only person that’s had to deal with this.  So what do you do if this happens in your household?  Just rewashing won’t do the trick.  Once the item gets wet again, the smell will return.  Below are three tips from our resident expert, Mike Feudale.

• If it happens to be white undergarments, rewash in chlorine bleach using the hottest water that’s safe for the fabric.  You can also put 3% hydrogen peroxide on the area, wipe it clean, and rewash.  Either way, dry the items outside in the sunlight. Fresh air and direct sunlight eliminate mildew.
• If they are color clothes or towels, try adding a small box of baking soda to the wash.  Be sure to hang outside in the sunlight to dry as well.  To avoid the possibility of fading, turn the items inside out.  Obviously if they are towels, there’s no turning inside out.  But the fading will be minimal.
• If it is a delicate or special item bring it to A Cleaner World, even if it is white.  Sometimes chlorine bleach can damage the optical brightness of white causing yellowing.

We hope these tips prove helpful should you have a mildew load.  But if it happens and you need help, feel free to call one of our locations or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, or G+.

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