How to Get Smell Out of Dryer

Forgotten items within pockets and and mildew laundry are often directly responsible for unwanted odors that develop within the dryer. When smell items are added within a drying cycle, they can quickly cover the walls of the machine permeating it in a sharp odorous residue.

Given the appliance’s purpose, drying laundry in such a odorous environment may mean that you would be left with similarly smelly clothing and linens.   Fortunately, there exist several home remedies to remove odorous residues living within your dryer to make it smell like new. By following the below tips, we will be able to freshen the machine and have it running back within use in no time.

Dryer Deodorizing Solutions

1 Diluted Bleach Wipedown

As a preliminary step, using diluted bleach to wipedown the interior odorous residues of the dryer will help to remove any unwanted smells.  mix a solution of one part bleach with five parts warm water.  Proceed to wipe down the interior of the dryer making sure to lift off any visible residues form the interior of the machine.  Leave the door open and allow the interior to dry and air out for 20- 30 minutes.  Once completed, place several white towels within the machine and run for an entire cycle.  As one final preventative step, place an old colored piece of clothing within the dryer and run it on high to check for any remaining bleach that could potentially lead to bleaching effects.

2 Dryer Sheets and Old Towels

After doing an initial wipedown with a warm wet towel, proceed to fill the dryer a half box full of dryer sheets and several old wet towels.  The combination of this high level of dryer sheets with wet towels will yield a much fresher smelling interior within the dryer.    The wet towel will repeatedly strip any remaining odorous residues from the interior and the excessive dryer sheets will help to cover any remaining unwelcome smells from the machine.

3 Dry Wet Diluted White Vinegar Towels

This household acid works wells at cutting through nearly any odors.  Make a solution of one part white vinegar with seven parts warm water and dunk several old towels within the solution.  Remove the towels from this solution and place them directly within the dryer to run at the highest cycle level.  This nontoxic solution will help to strip the interior of any smelly residues by the time that the cycle has completed and the towels have dried.

4 Dry Wet Baking Soda Soaked Towels

Baking soda is another household ingredient that can be used to absorb odors from a variety of items.  Mix a solution of one part baking soda with 10 parts water and stir well.  Dip in several full sized old towels and provide 5 minutes for the towels to soak within the mixture.  After this time has passed move the baking soda soaked wet towels within the dryer and run for a full drying cycle.  These towels will work to absorb much of the odors within the dryer as they are dried to make sure that the dryer’s interior is left smelling fresh.

5 Dry Lemon Juice Soaked Towels

The citric acid within lemon juice will help to cut through any smelly residues that may have gathered on the interior of the dryer.  Squeeze out the juice of 3-4 lemons to be mix with a gallon of warm water.  Next, dip several towels within the mixture until the are thoroughly moistened. Once completed, place the lemon juice ridden towels within the dryer for an entire cycle until the towels have been completely dried.

Smelly Dryer Principles

1 Avoid Drying Valuable Clothing & Linens

Once an odor has developed within a dryer, be absolutely certain that you do not place any valuable clothing or linen within the dryer.  The hot cycle of the dryer has the potential to open up the clothing faber further and sink in unwanted odors within the stitching that will not be easily removed.  No matter how urgent the need to dry, make sure that the dryer has been completely treated before a running for normal use.

2 Run Dryer on High

When treating the dryer, make sure that your run the dryer on the highest and hottest setting.   This will ensure that the odor will be loosen from the walls of the dryer and transferred to the old towels within the dryer.  As well, it will help to activated the cleaning solution that you have applied to the towels within the dryer.


Published by

Joe Fresh

Joe is an odor combatant, chemistry extraordinaire and all around good guy. He has an over-productive olfactory system with absolutely zero tolerance for unpleasant aromas.

2 thoughts on “How to Get Smell Out of Dryer”

  1. Husband poured sulphur on his legs and socks to keep the bugs from biting him! Washed all together with dark clothes and now it all stinks of sulphur! The dryer smells too! Don’t know where to start with the odor removal? Help!

  2. I am trying to find a way to get this nasty smell out of my dryer without having to just buy a new one. My nice clean clothes come out of the dryer smelling like mens sweaty arm pits. It’s a terrible smell, and embarrassing. Do you have any advice on how to get that smell out of there?

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