Dad always said, lay those rags out, then throw them away...or they'll catch on fire. I was always like, Yeah, right....they'll just magically burst into flames, huh? it turns out dad was right...kind of. Most of our oily rags were from working on vehicles, and generally speaking, motor oil and engine grease don't self-combust. Linseed oil, on the other hand, is a whole different deal. If you use linseed oil and just wad up the rag and throw it away, it heats up chemically as it evaporates, and yes, sets itself on fire! Wanna see it actually happen?

In a recent story on, a Kennewick home recently caught fire due to oily rags. It is not stated that it was linseed oil, specifically, but this seems to oil most likely to self-ignite.


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