Rust stains are so annoying because they’re hard to remove. In this article, we give you easy and practical information on how to get rid of rust stains that appear on your stuff and furniture in your home.
How Do We Get Rust Stains?
Rust stains may not be conspicuous when they’re on not-so-important stuff of ours in the garden, car or outside the home. We might even get used to seeing them eventually. But what do we do when one day we see rust stains on our favorite clothes or on a precious
piece of furniture in the home? What’s more, considering that rust stains are so stubborn that they’re unlike other stubborn stains and their removal requires special remedies, we may even be demoralized. First, let’s take a look how rust is formed.
Corrosion is oxidation formed on the surface of metals (mostly iron) when they’re in humid air or in contact with water; that is to say, metal oxidation. You know about the rust on the surface of your metal belongings that have been exposed to rain for a long time. They appear in shades of reddish-brown or sometimes mold-like colors. Corrosion is a natural chemical process that takes place over time. Yet, it’s possible to prevent it by taking certain measures. Regular painting and maintenance of metals help protect their surface. Primary maintenance methods are to cover the surface area with a weatherproof metal, paint with zinc, and cut off contact with air.
We may come across corrosion any time, anyplace. If no precautions have been taken beforehand, rust stains on surfaces are inevitable. As it is known, stains caused by rust are pretty damn stubborn. What’s more, if the surfaces are scraped off, dismantled or rubbed off, more rust stains will appear. The places we often see rust on are our clothes, rugs, furniture, concrete, bathtubs, washbowls, shower cabins and sometimes even surfaces that are claimed to be rustproof.
There are several methods for cleaning surfaces that look squalid, filthy and unhealthy because of rust stains and also our clothes.
Methods For Removing Rust Stains
First, determine on which surface are rust stained. The most important point in removing rust stains is to take action according to the surface. This is actually true for most stubborn stains. When you’ve found the right method, you won’t have to apply different methods over and over. Thus, you save time and can contentedly use your stained clothes or furniture again.
What not to do
There are some rules that may be said to be essential in removing rust stains. Let’s talk about them briefly first.
- Never use detergents that contain bleach for removing rust stains. Detergents that contain bleach with chlorine must not to be applied on the rust or its stains because they will make the color of the surface worse.
- If the rust stains are on the surface of furniture, kitchen utensils, or metals, you can rub them off. There is no harm in this. No solution or any other special treatment is required. However, you’re not supposed to scrape rust stains off your clothes. You should only use sandpaper or a sponge to rub light rust stains off your clothes.
How To Remove Rust Stains From Fabric
In addition to rust stains that appear in our living quarters without us noticing, those who are often in contact with machinery at work are very likely to come across rust stains on their clothes. Also, it’s only natural for everybody who spends a lot of time in the garden working with the equipment and using tools made of iron and steel there, to have rust stains. In general, the best substances for removing rust stains from fabric and clothes are acids. Acids are quite effective against rust. The methods for removing rust stains from clothes and fabric are below :
Salt And Lemon
Citric acid in lemons is a natural remedy for removing rust stains. Lay the cloth on a flat surface and put some salt on the stained area. Later, squeeze a lemon on the area until the salt is absorbed. Lemon juice found in markets can also be used. Wait for about 30 minutes. Direct sunlight is preferred by some during the process, but you need to be careful that the fabric does not get decolored. Finally, rinse with plenty of water.
Vinegar is another cleaner fairly effective against rust stains. Immerse the stained area on the fabric in the vinegar and wait for a while. A couple of minutes is enough. Finally, rinse with plenty of water.
Hydrogen Peroxide, Cream Of Tartar
Detergents containing bleach may leave a pale color on the fabric. Therefore, try using hydrogen peroxide and cream of tartar for removing rust stains from your clothes when you seek a more effective solution. Put both substances in a bowl and mix them until they become pasty. When the mixture is ready, spread it on the stain. After waiting for a while, rinse with clean water. At the last stage, you can wash the item in a washing machine according to its cleaning instructions.
- If you opt for the mixture of hydrogen peroxide and cream of tartar for the removal of a rust stain, keep in mind that this is good for white clothes only.
- Do not put your clothes in a tumble dryer until the rust stains have been completely removed; otherwise this is going to make it harder to remove the stains left on the fabric.
- Some clothes carry the “ dry cleaning only “ tag. In such cases, if you’ve come across a rust stain or any other type of stubborn stain, you’re advised not to make any attempts for the sake of your clothes.
- Stain removing detergents that are sold in supermarkets may be quite effective. However, you should test such detergents on a part of your clothes that is not seen from outside.
How To Remove Rust Stains From Rugs
The rugs we have at home are important to us from an esthetic point of view. Therefore, we generally tend to choose heart-warming colors, multicolored patterns and tints. Yet, a light-colored rug means a background which makes dirt and stains easy to see at the same time.
Rust stains on rugs are usually formed by the metal parts of furniture. As tables, chairs, sofas and coffee tables with metal legs rust over time, these will leave stains on rugs. The first action to take to make sure your rugs do not get stained is to maintain and protect your rusted furniture, and if this is not possible not to keep using them in the first place. Apart from this, you can alternatively cover the base of metal legs with plastic caps or pads to protect your rugs against rust stains.
You should immediately act against rust stains on rugs. If it’s been some time since the stain appeared and penetrated the rug, then you can do the following.
First of all, try using a hard material on the stained surface. This action, which requires strength, will help you scrape the rust stain off the surface. Do the scraping with a plastic card, knife or anything else with a sharp edge without harming the rug. After that, put some dishwashing liquid on a clean and damp sponge and apply pressure on the stained surface of the rug. Wait for 5 to 10 minutes this way. Use a towel to absorb the liquid on the stained surface. Make sure that the towel is clean and especially in white color, otherwise it may leave its dirt or dye on the rug. The crux of the matter here is this; if the towel gets the stain, you should continue the process. But if the rust stain has not been removed and stays where it is, you should proceed to the next step.
In the final phase, you can make use of a lemon and the acid contained therein, which is a natural cleaner. However, the acid the lemon contains may make your rug paler, therefore we advise you to use it with care. Pour the juice of the lemon you’ve squeezed on the stained surface and wait for a few hours. Later, use a damp towel to clean the stained area by absorption.
Removing Rust Stains From Concrete
A scene we often encounter in the wet, poorly sunlit spaces in the home, in storage areas, the cellar and garage: concrete with rust stains on. A common problem almost everybody is familiar with. If there’s a metal in contact with the surface of concrete, it will inevitably cause rust stains with the influence of water and air. If the precautions above, the protective methods against rust stains and maintenance have been ignored, we begin to see large and small rust stains formed on concrete over time.
You can make use of hydrogen peroxide to deal with rust stains on concrete. After mixing with some water, spread the hydrogen peroxide on the stained areas. Rub the stains off thoroughly with the aid of a hard, hairy sponge or a brush similar to that. Another option is to clean with surface cleaners containing strong chemicals, which are available in supermarkets. Yet, this type of cleaners must never be used without wearing gloves since they may be harmful to you and others living in the home.
Removing Rust Stains From The Bathroom And Toilet
Areas such as the toilet, shower cabin, bathtub and washbowl in the bathroom may rust with use because of the materials that are involved in their production.
In addition to being disagreeable to the eye, rust stains in the bathrooms and toilets are also considered unsanitary. We can make use of natural methods for the removal of rust stains in these areas at home. You can get results in removing rust stains with the help of pumice stone. First, clean the whole surface thoroughly with a mixture of a good quality soap, water and vinegar. Then, wipe well by rubbing off with an appropriate brush. This process will first enable a general cleanness. In the final phase, directly wipe the stained area with the pumice stone you’d soaked in warm water.
If this method doesn’t work, put some hydrogen peroxide and cream of tartar in a bowl, mix them until they become pasty and then spread the whole shebang on the stained area and wait for about 20 minutes. Then, rinse with plenty of clean water.
Removing Rust Stains From Stainless Steel Surfaces
Stainless steel pieces do not really rust, unless we leave them uncared for, dirty and wet for a long time. Chrome gets oxidized in that case and acts like a barrier. This prevents the iron from protecting itself and corrosion begins.
If you see any stains on your stainless steel utensils, pots and pans, the solution is very simple. Brush off the stained area and dry it off. Remember to leave this kind of items dry at all times.