Dingy clothing is a common complaint and one that can often be resolved. This is a guide about solutions for dingy clothing.
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Here are questions related to Solutions for Dingy Clothing.
I moved and the washer I am using is leaving my colored clothes dingy, I can't get them clean. I read to use Iron Out on whites. Can you also use it on colored clothes? What would be best for soaking my colored clothes? They are mostly my 4 year old daughter's clothes.
Cass from KS
By Louise B.02/12/2009
Since your problem is a washer that is not working properly, I would just try washing as usual when you get a new washer or have this one fixed. It may be that they come clean with a good wash cycle.
If not, try one of the many things suggested until you find one that works. I would start with the baking soda, maybe Borax if that didn't work. good luck.
I washed a yellow t-shirt in cold water with dark colors. It is now looking a little dingy. I was wondering if there is a way to get it back to it's original brighter color.
By Doug from Pompano Beach, FL
Clorox all fabric bleach is another good alternative. Dry in the sun. Should be good as new. Make sure you don't use the regular clorox bleach. Use the one that is safe for colors.
Everything, white sweaters, blouses, etc. becomes dingy.This happens even though I wash whites only loads. What can I do to whiten them again?
By Phyllis from Newark, NJ
I have a Bosch front loader (about 5 years) and recently most of my whites and light colored shirts are coming out dingy and with stains under the arms. I have tried using less detergent, more detergent, pre-wash solutions, baking soda paste, just about everything and they still come out with the stains. Is there a filter or something in this thing? The manual doesn't say anything about it. I do have three dogs that shed a lot and I wash their bedding in it. Possibly something is clogged? Help!
By RKS from Grants Pass, OR
I had a front loader for years and loved it. The causes of some problems may be
1. Putting too many clothes in at a time. I had a friend with a top loader and wondered why her clothes were grey only to watch her cram it full of clothes. It is like taking something really dirty and trying to wash it in 1 cup of water...
2. You may have a build up of detergent. To check it wash a load of clothes with nothing in the water and check the window for suds.
3. I always use a second rinse and vinegar in the rinse cycle.
4. If you get too many suds generously pour vinegar in to cut the suds. Then rinse again. I never had problems with dingy clothes especially because I use a double rinse and vinegar
I have some off-white hand towels that while they are still in great shape, have gotten dingy looking over time. I was ready to throw them out because even straight bleach (as well as other cleaners) didn't seem to make them look clean again.
However, I decided to try a combination of Soft Scrub with bleach, Clorox bleach pen, and Vivid. I put all three products on the problem area and used a little scrubber brush to work it into the fabric, I let the towel sit overnight and then washed it.
On the worst towel, I had to do this several times but it now looks like new! I love the towels and now I don't have to buy new ones to replace them.
By Carol from Iowa
Oxyclean is all I use on my dish towels and they are bright white all the time. Even the blue and green ones are bright. Just make sure you use really good hot water and then I let them soak for a while then through in the detergent and the rest of the towels. They all come out beautiful.
I have a man's suit jacket that is now a dingy white (with rhinestones on the collar), and I am wondering what the best approach to whitening it is?
By Heather W.
I noticed after several years our towels and wash cloths are more than dingy. I've washed in hot and cold water, no change. I guess after electric dyer the stains are set in.
Is there a remedy for this?
By Lee M. from Magnolia, AR
Thrifty Fun has been around so long that many of our pages have been reset several times. Archives are older versions of the page and the feedback that was provided then.
Why do my clothes get dingy-yellow-brown-like after I wash them? Granted, I have washed them many times, but it looks like I have washed some of my clothes in dirt! Even whites. Even though I use tons of bleach. Please help!
Erin in TN
By Lisa Pfusch
Also, have your washer checked if it continues. I don't know why or how, but older washers sometimes have rust deposits that come in with the water. I do know that it usually means the washer has to be replaced. (01/15/2005)
By Ruth Justice
I often use a product called "Yellow Out". You can get it at Wal-Mart next to the Mr. Plumber-type stuff. I have used it mostly on whites and it will work on some colors. It also gets rid of rust stains.
I have also found the using the "oxygen" stain removers makes this problem worse. Bleach is o.k. but don't use it on every load. Over time it will cause yellowing if you have a hard water problem. (06/19/2005)
By USE WARM WATER!
My 10 year old front loading automatic washing machine finally died and I replaced it with a twin tub washer. I make my own laundry powder using baking soda, borax, washing soda and grated laundry soap mixed together in equal quantities. The trouble is, my whites are looking very dingy which never happened with my automatic.
Do I need to change the formula of my detergent or am I doing something wrong? I always wash with very warm water - not too hot - so that the detergent will melt properly. PLEASE HELP! The water here is hard but I've never had problems before. I can't afford to buy another machine so I have to sort something out.
Cettina from Malta, Europe
By Cindy S.
I have used the homemade laundry detergent recipe for years and it is a lot of fun using it. The problem though that you are having and most all I know who use the homemade laundry detergent is, that Homemade laundry detergent does not contain anuyoptical brighteners like commercial laundry detergent. When you read about optical brighteners, they sound awful really as it is a glowing dye they use on your clothes to make them appear brighter and whiter than they really are. You could add a product to your homemade laundry detergent that has optical brighteners in it, of course that would bring the cost up to making it. You can also try using store bought fabric softener as this has optical brighteners in it. I have tried to find a "natural" product to have this effect without the dye and chemicals, and I myself have not found a solution yet. Many of my friends who use the homemade laundry detergent, will wash their clothes in store bought detergent every now and then to prevent them from looking dingy.
One time I grated an entire bar of Ivory soap and put it in my whites and they looked bright and clean. But using a whole bar of soap on 1 load of laundry is not very cost effective. (08/16/2008)