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How To Clean Dirty Soccer, Baseball and Football Cleats

It’s game day. You’ve been sprinting, sweating and digging your cleats into the field. Whether it was a win or loss, all that hard work shows in your cleats. Read on to learn the best way to wash cleats as well as how to remove some of those stubborn smells to get them fresh for the next game.

What Is a Trusted Way to Wash Cleats?

A mixture of mild laundry detergent and warm water along with a cleaning cloth works best for the surface of the shoe. Depending on the state of the actual cleats, it’s recommended that a mild cleaning solution be used for stubborn stains or leftover residue from the field with a gentle brush. 

Can You Put Cleats in the Washer?

To avoid damage to your washing machine or your cleats, the best option is to hand-wash them using a mixture of mild laundry detergent and warm water. Use a mesh laundry bag or pillowcase to clean shoelaces in the washing machine with a cold, delicate cycle and mild laundry detergent.

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How To Clean Your Cleats

Every pair of cleats is an investment. That investment takes a beating on the field at every game and practice. That makes it even more important to prolong the life of your cleats. Here’s a cleaning routine to properly care for your cleats at home and show up for game day with a fresh pair.

  • Mild laundry detergent

  • Mild cleaning solution

  • Warm water

  • Soft cleaning brush

  • Popsicle sticks or putty knife

  • Washcloth

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Step 1: Eliminate Loose Debris

Beat your shoes together, sole to sole to remove loose debris. With your popsicle sticks or putty knife, gently scrape off remaining chunks of dirt, mud or grass.

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Step 2: Clean Your Soles

For this next step, you will use your soft brush or used toothbrush, warm water and a mild laundry detergent to create a cleaning solution. Scrub the soles of your cleats using the brush dipped in cleaning solution, making sure to scrub in between and around spikes to remove remaining dirt and stains.

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Step 3: Scrub the Top of the Shoe

Remove the laces to wash separately. Using your washcloth, warm water and a mild laundry detergent, scrub away any stains or leftover dirt. Carefully rinse with a warm, damp washcloth.

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Step 4: Wash Shoelaces

Laces can be hand-washed using dish soap and water, and scrubbed with a soft brush. They can also be machine washed by placing them in a pillowcase or laundry bag under a cold, delicate cycle using a mild laundry detergent. It’s advised to allow your laces to air dry on a rack or flat surface.

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Step 5: Let Your Cleats Air Dry

Lastly, lay out your cleats to dry indoors. Avoid direct sunlight. Ensure they are thoroughly dry before wearing or storing them again.

Can You Dry Cleats in the Dryer?

High heat can cause damage to your cleats as well as compromise their longevity. Avoid sunlight, using hair dryers or putting them in the dryer.

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How Do You Get the Smell Out of Cleats?

Shoes are known for trapping sweat and moisture, allowing for bacteria to thrive and for smells to form. The simplest way to deodorize your shoes is with sprinkling baking soda directly into the shoe and leaving them overnight.

Explore Maytag® Washers and Dryers

Your washer should work as hard as you do on the field. Help combat sweat stains, grass stains and more to keep jerseys, shorts and socks clean for your next match. Find your MVP washing machine and dryer that does a winning job, every time.

Discover additional laundry tips from Maytag brand

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