Removing grease stains: how to properly remove grease and dirt

Grease does not combine with water due to its chemical properties.

Fats occur naturally or can be chemically derived. Depending on their origin, natural fats are either animal or around vegetable fats. They are used as food and can also be used to preserve them. So fats play an important role in the diet.

So it also happens that we eat fatty foods on a daily basis. When eating, however, fats can quickly leave unsightly stains on the T-shirt or the sofa. To be able to remove the grease stains, a special treatment is necessary, because Fat is not soluble in water. This in turn means that you can not get the stains out with water.

Transparent grease stains

For example, if grease lands on a sheet of paper, we can see through it at this point. This is because the grease displaces the air bubbles between the individual fibers. The light can therefore pass through unhindered.

However, you can use hot water. This works because it is not the water but the heat that causes the grease stain to dissolve. But you can also add an emulsifier to the water.

However, hot water helps only with a very fresh grease stain. If a few minutes have already passed, you can Mix water with washing-up liquid, soap or detergent. These all have an additional fat-dissolving effect. Also petroleum ether, thanks to its chemical composition, is able to remove grease successfully.

2. Removing grease stains on different materials

Every material needs an individual treatment.

Not every material can be treated the same way when removing a stain. Textiles made of silk or leather, for example, do not tolerate high temperatures, which are very helpful for removing a grease stain. In contrast, you can easily remove stains in polyester in the washing machine. Even from jeans and from cotton the stains are easy to remove in many cases.

In the following you get a small Overview of what home remedy you can use to remove fresh grease stains. The focus is always on the material that the garment or piece of furniture is made of.

Material home remedy guide
Washable clothing or textiles Detergent, benzine, alcohol, washing-up liquid, bile soap, starch powder, talcum powder, potato flour, baby powder Mix detergent, bile soap or washing-up liquid with hot water and wash the stain with it; soak a cotton cloth with benzine or alcohol and dab it on the stain; the treatment with powder or flour is done without washing, the home remedy is applied dry on the grease stain, after the grease has been completely absorbed, the powder or flour can be brushed off
Leather baby powder, potato flour, starch flour, gall soap Sprinkle powder or flour on the stain, let it soak in and vacuum or brush it off; apply pure gall soap and then wipe it off with a kitchen towel
Silk Alcohol, baby powder; blotting paper Apply alcohol to the stain with a cotton cloth, let it soak in and dab with a paper towel; sprinkle baby powder on the grease stain, let it soak in and brush off; place blotting paper on and under the stain, iron over it until the grease is properly absorbed
Wood/parquet Dishwashing liquid, neutral soap, blotting paper Dissolve washing-up liquid and neutral soap in warm water and wash the stain, then dab dry with kitchen paper; place a sheet of blotting paper on the wood and iron at low temperature with the iron
Upholstered furniture Liquid soap, dishwashing liquid, potato flour Moisten the stain with water and apply dishwashing liquid or soap purely on it, massage and let it act, wash off with clean water; moisten the spot and rub potato flour on it, remove it with clean water

3. Remove dried grease stains from clothing

Always pre-treat dried stains!

You can use Remove fat more easily if it is fresh stains. Removing stubborn, older grease stains is considerably more difficult. In these cases, the fat has already penetrated deep into the tissue. The same applies to clothes in which you have already washed the grease stain.

It is important Pretreat grease stains. For washable textiles you can use either gall soap, benzine or alcohol for pretreatment. In this case, the selected home remedy is applied pure to the stain. While the bile soap is washed out after the exposure time, you can dab the petroleum ether and alcohol with a dry cloth. Afterwards you can clean the garment in the washing machine as usual.

You can also use alcohol or benzine for delicate materials like silk or leather. Textiles made of wool can be pre-treated with bile soap.

Old grease stains are very difficult to remove from upholstered furniture or carpets using household remedies. In these cases, resort to chemical cleaners if necessary.

Here you can find our general guide to removing stains.

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