Your work boots cost a lot of money when you bought them. That’s why you would want to know how to wash work boots. Do you know how they say that if a man takes care of his car, the car will take care of him?

The same can be said for your work boots. They will look after your feet if you look after them.

Work boots take a beating on the factory floor, in the garage, in the field, and even in your home or basement workshop. They will wear out quickly if not properly cared for.

This article will concentrate on how to wash work boots easily for clarity and how to dry work boots fast.

How To Wash Work Boots Easily

Listed below are eight tips that will help you out:

1. Know what kind of work boots you have:

Cleaning methods for different kinds of work shoes vary. Numerous work boots are made of leather, but other types of leather are available. I will show you how to clean various leather boots.
Let us look at two of the most common types of leather work boots, so you understand what I mean:

  • Top grain leather
  • Full-grain leather

What exactly are they?

Full-grain leather boots: As the name implies, the top layer is made of leather that has not been buffed or polished to hide flaws. Full-grain leather is used to make work boots, such as the Harley-Davidson Bosworth Men’s work boot, which is available on

Top-grain leather work boots: Top-grain and full-grain leather are not opposed but distinct. Full-grain leather means the top leather layer has been dressed to hide flaws. Because most top-grain leather is sanded, it becomes weaker, so such boots may be less expensive.

2. Nubuck or Suede work boots:

Work boots made of nubuck or suede can be cleaned similarly. It is hard to find an all-sued work boot. Let us say that cleaning leather boots is a lot more complex than cleaning nubuck or suede boots. The leather needs to be reconditioned. The suede only requires water and soap to clean! It is far less difficult to wash than leather.

3. Getting dried mud out of your work boots:

Allow your boots to dry thoroughly if they have mud stuck to them. Dry soil is easy to remove from leather boots because you rub them together and peel them off. However, dirt can become extremely sticky if the work boots have cloth or suede parts.

Getting the mud off the soles will take more effort because it has been compressed over time. Remember that the soles of your work boots carry all of your weight, and because they have trodden, mud gets quite sticky, and simply hitting them against each other will not get everything off.

When it comes to soles, you can get creative. Peel off the mud with a small stick. You can even pry the stubborn dirt with a small, blunt screwdriver. If that is not your thing, soak the soles in a shallow basin until the mud becomes soggy and falls out of the treads.

4. Preparing your work boots for cleaning:

Gather everything you will need. This includes things like:

  • Water, a gentle soap, and shampoo
  • Tartare sauce
  • Brushes with soft and stiff bristles
  • A large basin
  • Using rubbing alcohol
  • Juice of lemon
  • Vinegar
  • A sharp stick
  • Mink oil
  • Dry cloths
  • Powdered talcum
  • Polish

Unless these are slip-on or pull-on work boots, remove the laces. The laces must be kept clean separately. It would be best if you also took off the insoles and set them aside.

5. Cleaning your leather work boots:

Cleaning leather work boots is simple if you know what you’re doing. A lack of cleaning knowledge can severely damage your boots.
So, here I am with all of the cleaning work boots steps. Let us take a look at them:

Clean the outside of the work boots.

  • Remove the shoelaces, wash them with mild detergent, and set them aside to dry.
  • With a damp brush or cloth, remove all dirt from your boots.
  • If your shoes are filthy, use a leather cleaning solution to clean them. Because it cleans, nourishes, and moisturizes the leather, saddle soap is an excellent cleaning product.
  • Rub the surface of the saddle soap with a slightly damp cloth or brush until foamy lather forms.
  • Now, in a circular motion, rub the lather on the surface of your boots.
  • If necessary, apply more.
  • When cleaning, use a fresh cloth to remove the foam. Make sure there is no saddle soap residue on the boots.
  • Allow the shoes to dry in a well-ventilated area.

Cleaning the insides of your work boots

  • Remove your insoles. Clean them by hand or in the washing machine with mild detergent. Make it possible for it to completely dry.
  • Clean the insides of the boots with a damp cloth and a few drops of low-pH shampoo.
  • When cleaning, blot any shampoo residue off the boots with a clean wet cloth.
  • Wipe the inside of the boots with a dry rag to remove any excess moisture.

Condition the work boots

  • Use your favorite leather conditioner. Petroleum products should be avoided because they can degrade the quality of the leather.
  • Using a clean cloth, remove any excess conditioner.
  • Using a cloth, apply a coat of leather conditioner to the inside of your boot. Work the conditioner into the boots to absorb all of its benefits.
  • To get a lustrous shine on your boots, buff them.

Remember that hot water is not suitable for leather. Hair dryer heat is also damaging to leather. It would be beneficial to wash and dry your boots in cold water.

6. How to Clean the Soles of Your Work Boots:

  • Work boots have either synthetic or rubber soles. The cleaning procedure is the same.
  • Dish soap and regular water should be used. Check for pebbles in between.

How to clean oil and grease stains

Grease and oil stains require special attention. To start working in a garage or an automotive workshop, you must first learn how to clean grease or oil from work shoes.
An absorbent powder, such as talcum powder, will be required. Make it possible to sit on the oil or grease stain for a few hours. When you clean the crystals off the boot, you will notice the color fades.

Cleaning water stains from your work boots

Spills always happen at work, and your work boots are the first to suffer. As a result, you cannot claim to know how to clean work shoes if you cannot remove stains from work boots.
Combine lemon juice and cream of tartar paste to remove large, dark stains. Apply the paste to the color, allow it to dry for a few minutes, and then clean it up. The paint should have been entirely removed by then.

7. How to Remove Odors from Work Boots

  • Remove the insoles and fill a pair of socks with baking soda to eliminate the odour.
  • After connecting the open ends of the stockings, slip them into their respective boots.
  • Allow the shoes to cool for a few minutes or several hours; the odour should have dissipated when the socks are removed.

Could you put them in the washer to be washed? If you prefer, you can hand-wash and air-dry them.

Soap cleaning on the inside

To clean the insides of the work boots, soak them in water. Apply a few drops of mild shampoo to each boot, quarter-fill it with cold water, and then begin cleaning it with a cloth. If you don’t have mild or baby shampoo, don’t worry. Use organic dish detergent or soap. It should work flawlessly.

  • Discharge the dirty water from the boots and thoroughly clean them in cold water.
  • Continue this procedure as required to remove all traces of soap.
  • Hold your boots and soles up to dry.

8. How Do You Clean Work shoes in a Washing Machine?

You may have some difficulty cleaning the work boots if you are using the washing machine for the first time. The washing machine may stop spinning if the boots are not correctly positioned inside the washer. As a result, I have explained how to clean work boots in the washing machine below correctly:

  • After cleaning your shoes, remove them from the washer and lay them out to dry in the sun.
  • Use liquid detergent to wash and dry them separately.
  • You wash your work boots and sprinkle them with baking soda the night before.
  • Turn your washing machine to cold and add the liquid detergent. Continue washing for another 40-50 minutes.
  • After wrapping the boots in towels, put them in the washer. The shoes will not collapse inside the washing machine if tangled with the towels.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Can you put work boots in a washing machine?

It is generally not recommended to put work boots in a washing machine. The machine’s agitation and water can potentially damage the boots’ materials and affect their structural integrity. Instead, it’s best to clean them manually.

2. How do you clean smelly work boots?

To clean smelly work boots, start by removing the insoles and laces. Scrub the boots with a mixture of mild soap and warm water using a soft brush. Rinse thoroughly and let them air dry. To tackle the odor, sprinkle baking soda inside the boots and leave it overnight before shaking it out.

3. How do you clean work boots?

To clean work boots, remove loose dirt and debris by gently brushing or wiping them. Then, prepare a solution of mild soap and warm water and use a soft brush to scrub the boots. Rinse off the soap and allow them to air dry. Apply a suitable leather conditioner or waterproofing treatment afterward, if needed.

4. What is the best way to clean the inside of your boots?

To clean the inside of your boots, start by removing the insoles if possible. Use a mixture of mild soap and warm water and a soft brush to gently scrub the interior. Pay attention to areas with visible dirt or stains. Rinse thoroughly and allow the boots to air dry completely before reinserting the insoles.

5. Is it OK to wash boots?

In general, it is not recommended to fully submerge boots in water or put them in a washing machine. Water and agitation can potentially damage the materials and affect the boots’ durability. Instead, spot cleaning and gentle handwashing methods are typically recommended for cleaning boots.

6. Does vinegar clean boots?

Vinegar can be used as a cleaning agent for boots, particularly for removing stains or mildew. Dilute white vinegar with water in a 1:1 ratio and use a soft cloth or brush to apply the mixture to the affected areas. Gently scrub and then wipe away the vinegar solution with a clean, damp cloth. Allow the boots to air dry completely. However, vinegar may not be suitable for all types of boots, so it’s important to check the manufacturer’s instructions or test a small, inconspicuous area first.


Work boots are costly; why ruin them by allowing them to become dirty?
A fresh pair of work boots offer several benefits. Clean work boots, for example, smell good, prevent bacterial growth, and, most importantly, look good on the feet. The procedure for washing work boots is now complete. We have already discussed how to clean leather work shoes. Perhaps you could clean them every weekend. If you are a responsible employee, your first role is to yourself, which includes having to care for your machinery.

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