The battle to prevent rust is never-ending. No one wants to see that reddish brown tinge to tools pots and pans, sinks and shower drains, but rust is a fact of life. You’ll find rust all over your home, usually in damp places. Rust is comprised of iron oxide, a common compound that is born when moisture and oxygen combine. Rust is dangerous, and has the potential to cause infections, tetanus or gangrene if it enters the body via an old nail or tool. However, even when a direct threat is not posed, rust is certainly unsightly. In the future, buy affordable steel that will resist rust. If it’s already occurred, check out these tips to get rid of rust in your home.
What do You Need?
Stubborn rust doesn’t come off easily, so plan to devote lots of elbow grease to the endeavor. Got pans and skillets that you don’t want to scratch? You’ll need a non-abrasive cleaner and a soft toothbrush, recommends Apartment Therapy, to keep scrapes and scuff marks at bay. You’ll need something a bit grittier to clean durable items, along with a hard bristle brush. You can opt for a rust cleaner purchased at the store that contains tough-acting phosphoric or hydrochloric acid. Just don’t forget to open a window so you don’t breathe in too many chemicals. A face mask and gloves are good ideas as well.
What Can You Find Around the House?
No need to spend lots of money for rust cleaners. Instead, take a look around the house for natural solutions. According to Texas Iron & Metal, your number one choice for buying Houston steel, salt and lime are great options that can neutralize the rust when allowed to soak for awhile. If a stubborn spot still remains, use the rind of the lime to rub it away. White vinegar is also a good natural tool for use with a sheet of tin foil. Baking soda and warm water can also do the trick. Make a paste and use that as a natural abrasive remover. If there is some black molasses around, dip the offending rust-covered item in a bucket of one part molasses and 12 parts water to dissolve the stain. In most cases, letting the tools or pots sit in a bath of vinegar overnight just might do the trick.
What About the Big Stuff?
Sometimes there are larger items that you can’t submerge in a sink like you can pots and pans. Perhaps rust has gotten the best of your tools, equipment and machinery. You could scrape the rust off with your sander or grinder, but just be aware that any paint coating the object in question will be removed as well. Start off with a light grit sandpaper attachment and progress to a coarse grit sandpaper if you need it, finishing off with a light pad for shine.
When handling those stubborn rust spots around the house, don’t forget a little elbow grease and some determination go a long way. And when you’re done, make sure to dry your pots and pans, tools and other household items completely before storing so there is no moisture left on them.
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