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  1. #1
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    Oops...can I wash out fabric softener?

    I washed my bike stuff tonight and as usual I dried the stuff on low that said it could be dried on low. When taking it out I found a dryer sheet that had been wedged in there. On the one hand I have no idea if it did any harm, but if it did can I just wash my stuff again to restore its wicking properties?

  2. #2
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    This probably won't cause much problem... these control static more than anything else and it was already used once.

  3. #3
    Optically Corrected KLiNCK's Avatar
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    Not a problem. Wear as needed and wash "normally" when required. Oh those pesky dryer sheets!
    "Succeeding....despite best intentions"

  4. #4
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Relax ... breathe ... it'll be fine.

    Cycling clothes are much the same as any other clothes. Just wash and dry as normal.

  5. #5
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    Relax ... breathe ... it'll be fine.

    Cycling clothes are much the same as any other clothes. Just wash and dry as normal.
    If you use technical fabrics they require special care... detergent and fabric softener will turn them into regular clothes.


  6. #6
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    If you use technical fabrics they require special care... detergent and fabric softener will turn them into regular clothes.

    I haven't noticed a difference.

  7. #7
    Certified Bike Brat Burton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    If you use technical fabrics they require special care... detergent and fabric softener will turn them into regular clothes.


    That explains it! Can't find that second pair of bicycle shorts anywhere - but I did find a pair of jeans I don't remember buying!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
    If you use technical fabrics they require special care... detergent and fabric softener will turn them into regular clothes.
    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    I haven't noticed a difference.
    You must have washed the engineering degree right off the fabric.

  9. #9
    Senior Member PatrickGSR94's Avatar
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    I've been using one of these Downy dryer bars that sticks inside the dryer drum in recent months, and not using any dryer sheets at all. Haven't noticed any issues with any of my tech fabric stuff.

    I also wash all my cycling and running stuff in the washer with this special Tide Sport detergent, made to use with active wear stuff that may be sweaty and funky. Stuff smells pretty nice.
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  10. #10
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    A tip one girlfriend shared with me is that you can cut a dryer sheet in half and just use one half of the sheet and you won't notice the difference.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burton View Post
    That explains it! Can't find that second pair of bicycle shorts anywhere - but I did find a pair of jeans I don't remember buying!
    LMAO.. best response i have read for a while.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Box worthy View Post
    LMAO.. best response i have read for a while.
    Is there a special brand or type of fabric softener that can turn cheap chinese knockoff lycra into expensive designer clothing? I could make a killing on ebay?

  13. #13
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    More importantly what brand of fabric softener increases my speed?
    You're just trying to start an argument to show how smart you are.

  14. #14
    Certified Bike Brat Burton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by superfred View Post
    Is there a special brand or type of fabric softener that can turn cheap chinese knockoff lycra into expensive designer clothing? I could make a killing on ebay?
    Your marketing skills need a reality check!

    Obviously people buying cheap chinese knockoff lycra products aren't all that in touch with reality. So your product won't actually have to do anything at all - you just have to claim it will!

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    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    I have definitely found that using fabric softer kills the wicking ability of fabrics and its use is contraindicated for towels, washcloths, and wicking technical fabrics. With thicker thermal jerseys I wear in the cold weather, I get wet and clammy underneath from sweat rather than it being wicked away from the skin. This is also the case with similar undergarments worn for hunting, skiing, and other outdoor activities.

    It will come out with repeated washing. Some recommend putting a 1/2 cup of white vinegar in the wash. I have not tried that myself, but it may hasten the process.

  16. #16
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Looigi View Post
    I have definitely found that using fabric softer kills the wicking ability of fabrics and its use is contraindicated for towels, washcloths, and wicking technical fabrics.
    Are we talking liquid fabric softener or dryer sheets like the OP discovered. I could see there being substantial differences in effect between a liquid infused into the cloth during washing versus a dry sheet put into the dryer.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  17. #17
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StanSeven View Post
    More importantly what brand of fabric softener increases my speed?
    And does it qualify as doping.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  18. #18
    Bicycle Repair Man !!! Sixty Fiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Looigi View Post
    I have definitely found that using fabric softer kills the wicking ability of fabrics and its use is contraindicated for towels, washcloths, and wicking technical fabrics. With thicker thermal jerseys I wear in the cold weather, I get wet and clammy underneath from sweat rather than it being wicked away from the skin. This is also the case with similar undergarments worn for hunting, skiing, and other outdoor activities.

    It will come out with repeated washing. Some recommend putting a 1/2 cup of white vinegar in the wash. I have not tried that myself, but it may hasten the process.
    Ditto.

    Liquid fabric softener is not good for materials who's function is to wick moisture away... detergents degrade the fabrics that are designed to remain waterproof like Gore Tex and other similar materials and the manufacturers advise that specialized cleaners be used to preserve these qualities.

    I only had to wash my Columbia shell in the regular wash once to find out how badly the waterproof qualities of the jacket could be affected and when you see yourself riding in the rain every day for over a month, you realize how important it is to use the right cleaners and also found that the proper cleaners also did a better job of cleaning the jacket.

  19. #19
    Senior Member PatrickGSR94's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
    A tip one girlfriend shared with me is that you can cut a dryer sheet in half and just use one half of the sheet and you won't notice the difference.
    haha I remember when I was in HS and college and doing my own laundry at home, my mom took the whole box of dryer sheets and sliced them all right down the middle.
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  20. #20
    Senior Member lucille's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
    A tip one girlfriend shared with me is that you can cut a dryer sheet in half and just use one half of the sheet and you won't notice the difference.

    Or, better yet, skip it all together.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Nermal's Avatar
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    I've been told that fabric softener sheets in a frying pan with water overnight will make them easier to clean. Didn't work for me, but I'm glad to pass the tip along.
    Some people are like a Slinky ... not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs.

  22. #22
    Lover of Old Chrome Moly Myosmith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burton View Post
    That explains it! Can't find that second pair of bicycle shorts anywhere - but I did find a pair of jeans I don't remember buying!
    Warn me when you're going to do that. I almost choked when I started laughing at your response.

    I doubt that a used dryer sheet left from a previous load had much softener left anyway. I don't usually use dryer sheets with my tech fabrics, but on a couple of occasions something got mixed in with the regular wash. I've never noticed any difference outside of the spring fresh scent. I'm sure that using large amounts of liquid softeners might have a more significant effect, but even those wash out after a couple of times through the wash. I don't go for the special "sports" detergents either and just use Woolite for Darks in cold water gentle cycle. Don't worry about it, nothing is ruined. Just be more careful on future washes if you are really that concerned.

    I also dry most of my tech fabrics in the drier using the low heat setting and a short cycle (my drier has a sensor to determine how dry you want the load). I take them out when they have just a hint of dampness left and will finish air drying in less than an hour.
    Last edited by Myosmith; 02-12-13 at 07:16 AM.
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  23. #23
    ouate de phoque dramiscram's Avatar
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    That's why my wife won't let me near the washing machine and dryer.
    Originally Posted by Leebo

    Headwind is like a hill without a soul. Just gear down and suffer.
    Quote Originally Posted by jrickards View Post
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  24. #24
    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dramiscram View Post
    That's why my wife won't let me near the washing machine and dryer.
    It was my wife who "accidentally" softened one of my precious winter jerseys....it's still not right after 4 washings.

  25. #25
    Senior Member PatrickGSR94's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Looigi View Post
    It was my wife who "accidentally" softened one of my precious winter jerseys....it's still not right after 4 washings.
    I do most of the laundry in our house for this reason
    2011 Felt Z85 105 | Ultegra | KMC | Selle Italia | Vuelta | Topeak
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