Left A Tissue In The Washing Machine? (this is what to do)

If a stray paper tissue has found its way into your washing machine and gone through a wash cycle, you will find pieces of that single tissue covering pretty much every item in the wash. You could be forgiven for thinking it has been snowing inside the drum of your washer.

If that isn’t bad enough, you now have to find a way to deal with all of those tissue paper covered clothes. If this is the problem you’re facing, keep reading. In this article I will show you a number of ways to remove this tissue mess, leaving your clothes clean again.

How To Remove Wet Tissue From Your Washing Machine

Before you can remove the tissue from your laundry, you need to remove the laundry from the drum of your washing machine. Place all of the laundry in a container so that you can access the drum of the machine.

Using your hand, remove as much of the sopping paper mess as you can. Don’t forget to check around the door and under the rubber door seal too.

Then remove the filter and give it a good clean under fast running water. Just as you do every time you clean the filter to ensure your washer works efficiently. You should also check the drain hose to ensure there’s no buildup of wet tissue that could potentially block the drain hose and cause any further problems.

I recommend running a hot service wash now just to make sure all of the tissue is removed from the machine. This should be the hottest wash cycle on your machine with an empty drum using either a commercial washing machine cleaner or 1 to 2 cups of white vinegar.

How To Get The Tissue Off Your Laundry

laundry room with pile of clothes

There are several different ways to remove wet tissue from your clothes which include;

Remove The Tissue Using A Tumble Dryer

Be sure to shake the clothes before putting them in the dryer to remove at least some of that wet pulpy mess. Then do the following;

  1. Check the care label to make sure that the items are OK to be tumble dried
  2. Run a low heat cycle, stopping the cycle every 5 to 10 minutes to clean the lint filter
  3. At the end of the cycle, remove and clean the lint filter again
  4. Use a lint roller to remove the last of the tissue from the now dry clothes

Soak The Clothes In Aspirin To Remove Wet Tissue

Aspirin actually dissolves tissue paper and in most cases will not damage the fabric of your clothes. Give the clothes a good shake to remove as much of the tissue mess as possible (this is best done outdoors or at least over some old newspaper) then do the following;

  1. Fill a bowl with warm water and drop one dispersible aspirin in the water.
  2. Allow the aspirin to dissolve and then take one item of clothing and perform a patch test to ensure the aspirin won’t damage or fade the clothes
  3. Repeat this with each item
  4. Once you’re sure that there will be no adverse effects using aspirin on your clothes, fill a bath full of warm water and add 4 dispersible aspirin tablets
  5. Once the tablets dissolve, place all of the laundry in the water
  6. Allow the clothes to soak for at least 2 hours
  7. Drain the bath water and put the clothes back into the now clean washing machine and run a rinse cycle
  8. Hang the clothes on a clothesline or place in the tumble dryer to dry
  9. Any remaining tissue residue can be removed by brushing with a clothes brush or lint roller
  10. Clean the washing machine filter and the dryers lint filter after the cycles have completed

Use Bicarbonate Of Soda To Remove Tissue From Wet Clothes

bicarbonate of soda

If you don’t have any dispersible aspirin, you can use bicarbonate of soda instead. The effects are similar with the added bonus that any bad smells will be removed at the same time.

All you need to do is dissolve 500 gms of bicarbonate of soda into a bath full of warm water. Then soak the affected clothes for at least 2 hours.

Then rinse each item either by hand or place them all in the washer again and run a rinse cycle.

Use A Clothes Brush To Remove The Wet Tissue

Start by shaking each item either outdoors or over some old newspaper laid on the floor then use a clothes brush to remove as much of the debris from each item.

Once all items have been fully brushed, place them in the tumble dryer or on a clothesline and allow to dry. If you’re using the dryer, stop it every 5 to 10 minutes to clean the lint filter.

Once all items are dry, brush them again with the clothes brush to remove any remaining pieces of tissue paper.

Use Sticky Tape To Get Rid Of Wet Tissue From Laundry

Using the sticky tape method will only work once the clothes are dry. You will need to shake every item to remove as much tissue paper as possible and then dry the clothes either in the tumble dryer (remembering to stop the cycle every 5 to 10 minutes to clean the lint filter) or on a clothesline.

Once the clothes are dry, roll sticky tape around your hand with the sticky side on the outside. Press the sticky tape against the surface of the tissue covered cloth and pull off quickly.

The sticky tape works in the same way as a lint roller but obviously the clothes need to be dry first to prevent the tape from losing its stickiness.

Can Tissue Cause Damage To The Washing Machine?

open washing machine door

The short answer is yes, tissue can cause damage to the washing machine. This is because the tissue can clog the filter, drain hose, drain pipe and even the drain pump.

Which is why it is vitally important that you clean the filter and check the drain hose after discovering a tissue accident in your washing machine. Otherwise your problems might become far worse than just tissue covered clothes.

How To Prevent This From Happening Again

Once you’ve suffered from the effects of a tissue spread all around the clothes in your washing machine, you’ll realise why it’s important to prevent it from ever happening again. You must always remember to check the pockets on each and every item that goes into the washing machine.

Remove anything that you find including coins, keys, nails, screws, hair pins and tissue paper. You should also get into the habit of removing and cleaning the filter on your washer at least once every 2 months.

As well as running a hot service wash in an empty washer once a month.

SEE ALSO: How To Clean A Washing Machine Like A Pro

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get tissue paper out of clothes after washing?

To get tissue paper out of clothes after washing, give each item a good shake and either; place the clothes in a tumble dryer and run a low heat cycle(remember to stop the cycle every 5 to 10 minutes to clean the lint filter), or place the clothes on a clothesline. Once dry you can use a clothes brush to remove any remaining pieces of tissue. If you want to dissolve the tissue, you can soak the clothes in a solution of warm water and dispersible aspirin.

Does tumble drying remove tissue from clothes?

Yes, tumble drying clothes covered in tissue paper will remove the tissue. You should run a low heat cycle and stop it every 5 to 10 minutes to remove tissue from the lint filter.

Does aspirin remove wet tissue paper from clothes?

Yes, aspirin actually dissolves tissue paper and removes it from wet clothes. All you need to do is dissolve 4 to 6 aspirin tablets in a bath full of warm water and soak the clothes for 2 hours or so. Then run the clothes through a rinse cycle in the washer.

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