Removing tar / asphalt with WD40 simple
How to Remove Tar and Asphalt from Clothing
Have you gotten road or roofing tar or asphalt on clothes? If the fabric is machine-washable, then you may, at your discretion, choose among the techniques listed in this article to help remove the marks, smears, stains, pieces or particles.
Preparing for Removal
Peel off as much tar as possible before treating.You can use a dull knife to gently scrape the tar off the fabric. Although hard tar is easier to pick off, the sooner you are able to pick the tar off, the easier the stain will be to remove.
- If the residue is very hard to get off, try rubbing some petroleum jelly on it and waiting a few minutes before trying to scrape.
Test your chosen method on a small area or one garment.
- Some fabrics may be lightened in color, stained, weakened or have change in texture, grain or the lay of its nap from some of these cleaning methods.
Donotdry with heat.
Removing a Thick Tar Piece/Glob (Freezing Method)
Put pieces or cubes of ice in a plastic bag and rub the bag over the tar, if a piece or glob of tar is stuck to the fabric.
Let the tar freeze (harden) to become brittle.
Peel away the brittle tar with finger nails or a smooth, dull knife (like a butter knife or case knife), spoon or an ice cream stick,when tar has hardened.
Removing Thin Smears or Spots (Oiling Method)
Coat and soak with one of the following oily products/solvents:
- Warmed (not too hot) lard, bacon grease or chicken fat-drippings;
- Vaseline, petroleum jelly, or chest vapor rub, mineral oil;
- Automobile tar and bug remover;
- Vegetable cooking oil;
- Orange hand cleaner.
Or, take clothing outdoors and spray the spot with penetrating oil (WD40 or such) --notnear a flame or cigarette, etc.
Similarly, take clothing outdoors and dab a small amount of white kerosene, paint thinner, mineral spirits, turpentine, alcohol or lamp-oil (notgasoline) onto a persistent stain with a white paper towel or cleaning rag --notnear a flame or cigarette, etc.
Consider using fingernail polishremoveras your solvent --notnear a flame or cigarette, etc.
Remove dissolved, oiled, greased tar by rubbing with paper towel or cleaning rag.
Repeat oily treatments, before washing:try a different solvent (volatile kinds, kerosene for instance), if the cooking fat or oil wasn't sufficient -- choosing from options above for stubborn spots.
Cleaning with Detergent
Do this after one of the previous methods, or by itself.
Treat with a prewash stain remover.Prewash stain removers come as a stick, a spray, or a gel.
- Test the prewash stain remover on a part of your clothes that won't be noticed to make sure it doesn't affect the color of your garment.
- Apply the prewash stain remover directly to the stain. For sticks, rub the stain liberally with the stain remover. When using a spray stain remover, spray the stain until it is fully saturated. A gel stain remover should be applied liberally, until the stain is covered.
- Let the prewash stain remover sit on the stain for a period of time. Check the bottle for instructions on how much time to let it work.
Apply a liquid enzyme laundry detergent to the stain.Tar and asphalt stains are oil stains, so you need an enzyme laundry detergent to remove them.
- Pour the enzyme laundry detergent directly onto the stain.
- Use a towel or paper towels to tamp the stain by pressing firmly on the stain and then lifting the towel back up.
- Press the stain several times with the towel, making sure to use a clean part of the towel every time you tamp.
Launder the clothing in the hottest water possible for the fabric.Look at the tag on the clothing to find out what temperature water it can be washed in. Wash the clothing using the enzyme laundry detergent.
Hang clothes to air dry.Allow your clothing to air dry to avoid setting any part of the stain that wasn’t completely removed.
- If the stain remains, repeat the steps using a dry-cleaning solvent in place of the prewash stain remover.
QuestionCan I put WD-40 or any other product on my sweater that has a tar spot?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYes. If the spot is small, get as much as you can off manually, spray, then dab with an absorbent material. The WD40 will thin the stain, and it could enlarge the stain area; keep spraying and blotting, and you should win.Thanks!
QuestionWhere do I buy automobile bug and tar remover?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerAny place that sells auto products should have it. Try parts houses, Walmart's auto section, and maybe even your grocery store.Thanks!
QuestionCan I wash tarred clothing in the washing machine?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYes, but it will set the stain; this means any stain remaining after the wash will be more difficult to remove. Don't put a garment dripping with tar into your machine.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I get tar out of suede?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerUse Endust, then blot with isopropyl alcohol, but test a small patch first for colorfastness.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I remove a small amount of road tar from my carpet in the house?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIf it is just on a few fibers you can trim the fiber of the carpet, otherwise use Endust dusting spray. Saturate the area, then blot, rubbing only slightly to avoid fraying the fiber. After that use a detergent to remove the Endust, such as a dot of dish detergent and water. Rinse, and then use isopropyl alcohol to help dry the carpet. Test first in an inconspicuous spot for colorfastness.Thanks!
How do I get tar out of my pipe?
Can I use bleach to wash tar off if I am already going to bleach the clothing?
What is name of enzyme laundry detergent?
If a piece of tar is stuck to your clothing, try filling a bag with ice cubes and rubbing it over the tar. Allow the tar to freeze and become brittle, then scrape it off with your fingernails or a dull knife. To get rid of smaller spots, try coating the affected area with vaseline or warm lard. Alternatively, take your piece of clothing outdoors, and dab a small amount of white kerosine or paint thinner on the spot. Finally, to remove the grease or oil, rub the area with a paper towel or rag.
- Seek medical advise and assistance, if eyes are contacted by a chemical (solvent, detergent, etc.).
- Wash separately from other clothing.
- Protect hands with rubber or vinyl gloves.
- Protect eyes, hair and skin from products. Flush any chemical contact thoroughly with water.
- Avoid breathing fumes of volatile/flammable cleaners -- and donotuse them near a flame (pilot light) or cigarette, etc.
- Kerosene, and such will leave an unpleasant odor, which is hard to remove, even after washing.
- Have leather, suede, fur or leatherette, etc. professionally treated and cleaned.
- Avoid more damage, wash or clean by following the manufacturer's cleaning agents and fabric care instructions (temperature, and the kind of cleaning process, etc.), if you are concerned about that at all.
- Avoid exposing the fabric to heat (cool-air dry only) until the stains have been removed.
- Caution: avoid scalding (from heated cooking grease or hot water).
- Stains on "dry-clean-only" fabrics should be professionally treated and cleaned.
Things You'll Need
Skin and hair protection
Rubber or vinyl gloves
Manufacturer's cleaning instructions
Solvent (probably oily)
Volatile, more flammable solvent (optional)
Liquid dish or laundry detergent (for prewashing)
Laundry detergent (for washing)
Paper towels or cleaning rags
Small scrubbing brush (such as an old toothbrush)
Water for washing and rinsing
Sources and Citations
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