How to Remove Lint from Clothes in the Washer

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Lint can build up on your clothes and end up in your washing machine. When this happens you need to take some steps to get rid of it. That’s why it is important to know how to remove lint from clothes in the washer.

Tip: Use a lint guard fabric sheet

It’s no secret that the machine dryer is a main player of getting rid of lint from clothes.  One of the quick fixes is to use a fabric sheet made for guarding against lint and pet hair lint. Using it helps you get rid of more lint during the drying cycle. If you’ve still got more lint to deal with, use a battery operated lint defuzzer to make your outfit ready to wear.

In this article, you can find out about the different ways of removing lint from your clothes while they go through the washing machine. This will help you get rid of all of those linty materials that get caught up in your clothing.

3 Steps to Remove Lint from Clothes in the Washer

Lint can be quite annoying, especially when you wash your clothes. You might end up having to spend a lot of time picking off these fibers. So, it would be better if you know how to remove lint from clothes in the washer.

Washing clothes will be more effective if you know the way to easily remove these fibers. We will show you how to remove lint from clothes while you wash them.

In the case of removing lint from clothes, you must give some extra care to sensitive materials. For example, the black pants that you wear regularly will be easier to care for when compared to your expensive sweater.

In the following sections, you will find how to maintain your clothes, how to get rid of lint and save them from looking worn out.

How to Remove Lint from Clothes in the Washer by Following These 4 Steps

The washer is the perfect machine for removing dirt from clothes. While roughing up laundry can ensure that it gets a good wash, it’s not enough sometimes. That’s because some items can attract lint easily. 

Removing lint from clothes and the washer is tedious work. Thankfully, some tips and tricks can help you prevent or reduce lint. 

Step 1: Sort out your clothes based on color and material

Before washing the clothes, it is a crucial step to separate them based on color and material. Always remember to clean different types of clothes separately.

For example, if you wash a towel and a sweater together, the fibers from each will end up clinging. Always wash similar type of fabrics together.

Some fabrics can easily attract lint. Even if they don’t shred lint themselves, lint will stick on those clothes.

A great tip is to wash some clothes inside out which can attract lint. On the other hand, clothes that already produce fiber, wash them normally.

Lint looks the most obvious on black clothes and bright colors, so give some extra care while cleaning them.

Here are a few tips on how to sort out your laundry:

  • Sort out all washcloths and towels because they produce lint. They tend to transfer lint to clothes, which is why you need to use separate wash cycles for them.
  • Separate clothes into a few colored batches to make lint less visible. When clothes of the same or similar color cling to another, the items that they stick to them are more difficult to spot. Lint is most visible in black clothing, so clean it with great care.
  • Each type of clothes should be cleaned separately. For instance, when washing sweaters and towels together, their fibers will cling and your laundry will be full of lint after washing. That’s why it is important to clean them separately.
  • For fabrics that are prone to attracting lint, turn clothes inside out before you place them in the washing machine. That will reduce the chances of lint sticking to the outside of clothing. If your clothing already produces fibers, you should wash it normally.
  • Check the labels to make certain the clothes are sorted properly. Remember that polyester clothes pick up lint, whereas cotton garments produce it in the washer. That’s why they should be washed at different times.

Step 2: Use vinegar or liquid fabric softener to wash clothes

Suppose you just washed your clothes and dried them. However, now you see lint all over your clothes. It is a good idea to rewash them.

Instead of using any type of detergent, you can run your washer with a cup of fabric softener or vinegar. White vinegar can make it easy to loosen and remove lint from fibers. Just like a liquid softener, it can relax the fabrics. 

You can also add a washing machine cleaner to keep lint from getting stuck in the hard-to-reach areas of the machine. The lint usually collects in the internal filters and corners of the washers.

If you use a washing machine, pour the liquid softener in the washing machine while the clothes are being washed.

Don’t worry. Your clothes will not smell like vinegar. Even if you use vinegar that causes a smell, it will evaporate after drying the clothes. 

Below are some tips and steps to follow when washing your clothes: 

  • Ideally, the vinegar should be added during the last rinse cycle to keep lint from clinging to your clothing. Check if your washer has a separate slot for adding it when rinsing laundry. If not, add vinegar at the beginning of the final cycle.
  • Before adding clothes, dilute vinegar a bit by pouring it into the water. This will make it less odorous.
  • After adding 240 ml (1 cup) of white vinegar – make sure it is distilled due to the strong odor – to the load, pour softener into your washer to fight lint. This should be done whilst the garments are being washed. 
  • Allow vinegar and water to agitate after filling the tub. Before emptying the washer, soak for about 75 minutes. This will help keep the lint off.
  • It is also a good idea to run an empty cycle using your favorite detergent to eliminate buildup. Instead, you can use 470 ml (two cups) of distilled vinegar when running an empty cycle. The effect is the same.

Step 3: Clean the Drier Filters and Washing Machine Before They Are Full

The next thing you should consider when washing your clothes is to clean your washer before running it. Actually, you need to do this before adding the next load. That’s because loose lint can easily come off your laundry and trap in the machine when filtering out of the drum.

Regular cleaning is the key to keeping lint and dirt at bay. This can ensure that fluff buildups don’t float around in the washer and find their way into the lint filter of your dryer. A blocked filter means a potential fire hazard because it can make the dryer heat up excessively. To prevent this, clean your washing machine and dryer regularly. 

  • Clean your washer once every 3 months. In addition to preventing the filters of your dryer from getting clogged, it will make sure that your washer runs efficiently and effectively. As previously advised, use either detergent or white vinegar when running an empty cycle to clear off any buildup.
  • Clear your dryer’s filter after every use. This will keep lint buildup from ending up in your clean clothes. Simply slide the filter out and remove any lint and small items before putting it back.

Step 4: Use Detergent as Specified on the Package and a Gentle Cycle When Washing High Lint Clothes

Lint shedding garments should be washed on a gentle or delicate cycle. This will cause the fibers to disturb less, thereby shedding less lint. In addition to limiting the wear and tear, a delicate cycle can prevent the breakdown and shrinkage of the fabric.

Besides, you should check pockets for paper, tissues, and napkins before washing the clothes. They can easily break down and form lint that will then get everywhere in the washer. That’s why you need to pull out everything you find in the pockets of your pants, sweatshirts, and shirts.

When it comes to the amount of detergent, always check the packaging to find out how much should be used. This will depend on how many items you want to wash in your machine and water hardness. The proper amount of detergent can prevent a grimy residue or lint particles.

Step 5: The dryer and the best way to remove the lint

Simply placing the clothes in a dryer often removes loose lint. Use a lint guard dryer sheet to get rid of more lint during the drying cycle.

Tip: Use a lint defuzzer for a quick lint cleanup

My favorite tool for manually removing lint from jackets and sweaters is a lint defuzzer. It’s a battery-operated shaver that removes pills, matted fibers, and other unwanted broken lint fibers without damaging the clothes. The best part is it is portable, so I can take it with me around the house and during travel for a last minute outfit cleanup.

You can also use a lint roller if you want, or use a clothes brush to remove the remaining lint from the clothes.

Different Ways to Remove Lint from Clothes

Use a lint defuzzer for quick cleanup

The easiest method is a battery powered tool that will remove lint as you move it over different areas like you are mowing the lint. This handheld device makes it easy to manually remove lint from sweaters, and even other items around your home, like furniture and blankets. It can get your clothes looking new within minutes.

Scotch Tape

Scotch tape can be a great tool to remove lint from your clothes. You have to fold the tape so that there are two sticky sides of the tape.

One side will be attached to your hand or fingers, and the other side will remove the lint.

It is an excellent method to get rid off lint from the black pant that you wear regularly. Because a small amount of fiber can easily be shown in black clothes.

If you need to remove lint from larger clothes, use other ways.

Dryer Sheet with Lint Guard

It is a budget-friendly and easy solution to getting rid of lint. You can use either a dryer sheet with lint guard or a damp one as well.

Rub the sheet over your pant or sweater until all the fibers are gone.

Lint Roller

Lint roller has become very popular over the years. You can buy a lint roller from any nearby superstore or drugstore.

You can either buy a small lint roller or a larger one based on your preference.

Before using the roller, place your sweater or pant on a plain surface and roll the lint over your cloth.

You might have to run multiple times to get rid of all the small fibers.

If the amount of lint is massive on your sweater, you can change the paper and take a new sticky paper.

how to remove lint from clothes in the washer

Disposable Razor

This method will give you the best result to get lint off a sweater. At first, place your sweater on a flat surface.

Hold one area and smoothly run the razor over the surface of the sweater. Don’t be too hard as it can damage the material. Be very careful and work with patience.

Anti-static Spray

Anti-static sprays are not only used to prevent staticky clothes on your skin. If you find lint after washing your clothes and don’t have enough time to rewash, you can use spray.

Spray it all over your clothes, such as pants or sweaters, and then remove lint by using a lint roller.


Can I Rewash My Clothes to Get Rid of Lint?

Yes, you can. Since clothes that covered by lint are already cleaned, detergent can be omitted. Light or normal wash cycle will be enough with a rinse of vinegar or laundry softener. If your laundry is already dry, use a delicate cycle when running your dryer with a lint guard dryer sheet.

Why Is There Lint on My Clothes After Washing?

After washing, there might be lint on your clothes due to the clogging of the drain pump filter. That can cause the rinse water to drain slowly. As a result, wet clothing is full of suspended lint.

Or perhaps you’ve accidentally overwashed the clothes which can cause damage to the fabric and shed some lint along with it. To prevent lint from occurring again, you can manually remove the lint with a lint defuzzer. 


Lint builds up in clothes and can make them look dirty. The good news is that you can use the washing machine to get rid of it easily. Use these tips on how to remove lint from clothes in the washer and your clothing will always be tidy.

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