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Cleaning FILTHY nylon halters

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  • Cleaning FILTHY nylon halters

    Is there a good way to clean really, really, disgustingly filthy nylon halters? Some of them are so gross you can't really tell what color they were supposed to be originally.

    (These halters aren't mine; they're at a rescue where I volunteer, and they aren't used on horses. The tack rack there is a few nice, newish things on top of an enormous pile of filthy stuff. I'm trying to work my way through the filthy stuff and make as much of it as possible usable again--on days when there are a lot of volunteers, availability of usable equipment is a limiting factor on how many horses can be worked with at a time.)

    There are tons of halters, and probably some of them just need to be thrown out, but I hate to throw things away that can be made usable again. It doesn't matter if they fade or discolor during cleaning as long as they can be safely used again.

  • #2
    get a muck bucket and a large bottle of ammonia.
    put the halters and the ammonia in the bucket, fill with water and let sit for a bit, like
    several hours. Swish them around a bit if you happen to walk past the bucket.
    after several hours, empty the bucket, rinse the halters well.
    Put them in the washing machine with some heavy duty detergent.
    They will look tons better when they come out.
    If they are really gnarly you may have to run them through the wash again
    but they will look way better.
    If you happen to catch the rinse cycle you can empty a small bottle of baby oil in the water so they won't be so stiff.
    "Perhaps the final test of anybody's love of dogs is their willingness to permit them to make a camping ground of the bed" -Henry T. Merwin


    • #3
      Washing machine with Oxi-Clean and detergent. Leave the house--very noisy.
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      • #4
        Bring them home, fill a bucket with very hot water and soak them.
        Hit them with a hose afterwards on hard spray to remove whatever loosened up. Then toss the in the dishwasher...no soap.
        I wash mine in the dishawasher after removing the leather parts. But then I don't think I'd want uber-filthy ones in there. But very hot water is needed, along with long term soaking. That grunge that gets ground in only gives up when it's been soaked for long periods in hot water.
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        Hold onto the bridle!
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        • #5
          I'd vote for the washing machine with HOT water & CHLORINE bleach. Would be better if it was a front load washer. Yes, do remove the leather parts such as a breakaway strap over the head.


          • #6
            You can muffle the washer by throwing an old towel in with the halters.

            Soak the halters in a water filled bucket to which you've added a box of Borax and a container of chlorine free bleach. You can also make a paste of Borax and chlorine free bleach and spot scrub spots.

            After they've soaked for a good 12 hours, then wash them on the longest setting - with more Borax and chlorine free bleach along with detergent. You may need to wash twice if they're truly horrible. (or use real bleach if you want - I just prefer chlorine free to avoid spots or fading)
            Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
            Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
            -Rudyard Kipling


            • #7
              Clorox cleanup in a bucket for an hour or so and then take a pressure washer to them.


              • #8
                My halters get super dirty all the time as my horses are big time rollers. Anyway, I always give them a good hosing off so they are "a little" clean and not caked in mud or whatever and then I bring them home and throw them in the washing machine. They come out perfectly clean.


                • #9
                  I'd throw them in a bucket of water along with some washing up liquid (erm, dish soap?) or washing powder to break down any grease. Leave them overnight to have a really good soak. I love my pressure washer for things like this, so I'd lay them on the floor and put the pressure washer on them to blast away any crud. If they're still a bit dingy, throw them in the washer. (I stuff them inside of an old pillow case with a towel so they don't make as much noise.
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                  • #10
                    I hunt down a shady laundry mat where there is no onsite manager and wash all my blankets and halters. The people always look at me funny and laugh when I tell them horse blankets. They are always shocked that horses were clothes I live five minutes away from West Philadelphia not exactly farmland


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Sunny51324 View Post
                      Is there a good way to clean really, really, disgustingly filthy nylon halters? Some of them are so gross you can't really tell what color they were supposed to be originally.

                      5 gal buckets with borax and dawn (or some such) hot water soak and swish,change water a couple times..final rinse would be fabric softner and if I wondered where they had been, some tec-trol and an air dry in the sun...

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                      • #12
                        I found this new stuff called BAM - it's in a purple bottle and it's made by Easy-Off.

                        I just saturated my hammock with it (that was under a tree getting crud on it)... let it sit for about 30 minutes... and then took the hose to it. I was very impressed with the outcome! Virtually no labor involved!!
                        They call it PMS because Mad Cow Disease was already taken...


                        • #13
                          I second the ammonia as an excellent way to clean nylon halters, lead ropes, web reins, etc. It will not "bleach" out the color and doesn't break down the material as bleach eventually does. Just soaking the items in warm water and ammonia for a while then swishing them around will do wonders. works really well on the red clay dirt too. obviously, rinse the items in clear water after cleaning.



                          • #14
                            Pressure wash them then throw them in the washing machine inside an old pillow case.

                            Or go to a laundromat.


                            • #15
                              Washing machine with rugs or towels.

                              Not a lot a one time though. As a previous poster mentioned - very loud!


                              • #16
                                Automatic dishwashing detergent is an excellent cleanser. It is abrasive and non sudsing.

                                First, spray wash the items to remove any loose dirt, then dissolve about 1 cup of automatic dishwashing detergent in hot, hot water, then mix with more hot water in a muck bucket or pail. Let the web items soak a bit and then use a fingernail brush to scrub. (I scrub them under water to avoid the spray.)

                                Put all of them in a heavy laundry bag, tied closed, and put everything in the washing machine on delicate. Add fresh dissolved dishwasher detergetn. The laundry bag protects your washing machine from the metal clanking around. Run an extra rinse cycle or two.

                                Auto dishwasher detergent is probably very close to the Oxy clean products.


                                • #17
                                  Washing machine with lots of detergent, on the heavy duty cycle. Before the rinse cycle, open it up, and scrub each halter with a stiff brush (like for cleaning the bathtub). Only takes a couple minutes per halter. Back in the water, finish the cycle, and hang to dry. Voila!
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                                  • #18
                                    If mud encrusted I would soak in plain water in a muck tub overnight. Then spray off mud with hose. From there I spray dirty halters with Spray-and-Wash, both sides of straps, let sit overnight again to work thru the dirt.

                                    I bag the halters in those net laundry bags, about 4 to a bag. Throw 3 bags in my top loading machine and wash with Tide. Seems 3 bags keeps the tub balanced to spin out. I often add some towels, keeps the banging down. Don't overload the tub. I do a large load on water. Do a double rinse to make sure all soap is out of the nylon. The more water moving, the easier dirt is removed, cleaned out. So many folks have washer tub packed solid, nothing comes clean, horse or people laundry. Water is not moving so dirt stays imbedded in material.

                                    Hang to air dry. Bagging halters and towels in the load help prevent as much metal crashing in the tub, tangling so they don't come clean. Those net bags are $1 at Jo-Anns a lot of the time.

                                    I am not going to take extra time hand scrubbing, doing lots of water changes in muck tubs, to clean filthy halters. They need to come clean in the washer with out extra labor involved.

                                    This Spray-and-Wash method works real well for me, cleans up some nasty looking halters nicely. Not a fan of ammonia and bleach for horse things. Also harsh on the straps.

                                    My halters get washed regularly, they last longer, don't rub hair off with dirt. Horses only wear halters when in tie stalls, in trailers or being handled. But they may be mud puppies from laying out in the field, so halters also get muddy.


                                    • #19
                                      We throw them in the washing machine with Tide.


                                      • #20
                                        One more suggestion: unbuckle every possible buckle, unsnap every possible snap. Put the halters to wash as flat as possible. The fewer crevices, the fewer places for dirt & mud to hide & stay.