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Mildew Smell on Towels

How can you get the mildew smell out of towels? I wash them and sometimes they still have a mildew smell. And same with my husbands T-Shirts I wash them and the armpits still have a sweat odor to them!

Mandi from Erie


Mildew Smell on Towels

I do not use chemicals because I am the all-natural kind of person. I use an essential oil blend called Thieves ( that smells wonderful and kills toxic mold, bacteria and viruses. 1-2 drops in the washer is all that's needed. The towels come out smelling fresh and clean. It will eliminate the mold in the dryer too. (02/25/2007)

By Maria

Mildew Smell on Towels

Maria can you use any essential oil because I went to that website and that stuff is so expensive? Let me know! (02/25/2007)


Mildew Smell on Towels

Try putting white vinegar in the rinse cycle. I have a lot of sulfur in my water and the vinegar completely removes any rotten egg smell. (02/26/2007)

By susan

Mildew Smell on Towels

One Word: AMMONIA! Works great for everything in the wash that can't be bleached. Colored towels, funky husband clothes, etc. It's all I use for both. Hope that helps! (02/26/2007)

By Michele

Mildew Smell on Towels

For greatest results and greatest price, use white vinegar. I buy it by the gallon and keep with laundry supplies. Any time there is odor to your laundry, add some vinegar with your laundry soap. It will also soften the water, so use a little less soap. Vinegar disinfects and deodorizes. Start out using about a cup per load of laundry. (02/27/2007)

By Ellen

Mildew Smell on Towels

We've had the problem with smelly towels ( a sour mildew odor) and has taken me some time to trace it"s origin but I believe I have. My wife started using fabric softener about a year ago and about 6 Mo. ago this problem started. We have an Asko front loader and to resolve the problem I removed and cleaned the detergent tray with Clorox Clean-up, installed the tray and poured a cup of Clorox into the detergent compartment and ran a quick hot cycle. I next loaded 3 towels that we use the most,and smelled the worst, and ran on rinse cycle (no detergent). I was amazed at the amount of soap that was released from those 3 towels - the suds completely filled the machine. This is an 18 min. rinse cycle which I ran again with the same results. the suds finally diminished after 4 rinse cycles but took seven to take out most of the suds. The towels smell great for the first time in months. Apparently the fabric softener is somehow encapsulating the soap, not allowing it to be removed and because the softener kills the suds, it appears it is removing the soap but it may be that just the opposite is happening. Anyway, no more fabric softener in our wash!


Let us know if the fabric softener scenario could be your problem as well. In other words, if you have smelly towels do you use fabric softener or not. (07/06/2007)

By lon22

Mildew Smell on Towels

Okay I have tackled this problem and found the cure the following is a lot of work and will take time to do your laundry but well worth it
U will need the following products

*Oxi Clean® Versatile Stain Remover

*Bounce Dryer Sheets

1) Run your washer on prewash with 1 scoop of oxi clean

2) Run normal modem with 1 scoop of oxi clean

3) Put the smelly clothes/towels into the washer on prewash with 1 scoop of oxi clean

4) Run normal load with clothes and 1 scoop of oxi clean

5) Put them into the dryer with Bounce dryer sheets (

6) Take out and fold.

And there u go no more smelly clothes
Note: it will take 1hr to 2hrs a load
But it works I did it last night
And even made someone shower to test out the towels

By Brian

Mildew Smell on Towels

Please check out the 'washing machine smell" posting on this site! The problem IS caused by mold & fungus growing on the outside of the drum, and in other places we cannot get to (see details on listing above). I'm going to try a product called Purewash - that is supposed to remove the mold. I have tried at least a dozen empty loads with bleach over 2 years and it never helped a bit. I've also tried vinegar, borax, and Cascade, all with no help in the terrible smell. (08/29/2007)

By erika

Mildew Smell on Towels

Erika - Thanks so much for the advice on how to get rid of mildew odor from towels with Purewasher! It not only got our towels and washer smelling like new but I really think mine and my kids' allergies and asthma are gone! A green fungus came out when I cleaned it! It saved us from buying a new washer too! (09/30/2007)

By Siobhan

Mildew Smell on Towels

From reading these responses it looks like people agree on Bleach, Vinegar, and Oxyclean are the three main things to try. I'm trying Vinegar first, then I'll move on to Oxyclean and then finally Bleach if the other two don't work.

Dave (10/05/2007)

By Homestar

Mildew Smell on Towels

All of these solutions have worked to get towels clean smelling, but how is it the very next time they are used, the smell is there again? Makes the whole bathroom unpleasant! Time to toss them? (10/30/2007)

By kate

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