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How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel

Any house is incomplete without a kitchen, and having a kitchen that does not contain any appliance or utensil made from stainless steel material is not possible. Stainless steel is present in millions of homes across the globe. Appliances, cookware, serve ware, and many other items made from steel are there in both residential and commercial kitchens.

In fact, stainless steel as a material has become so popular that even countertops and backsplashes are increasing in demand nowadays. Some people even prefer to buy furniture items like wardrobes and cabinets made from steel over other materials, such as wood and aluminum.

Moreover, kitchen sinks have always been manufactured in steel. The reason why people like steel so much is that it has a unique appeal that other materials can’t beat. Furniture and appliances made from stainless steel have a pristine finish and a beautiful look. A significant percentage of the items in the kitchen and other areas of the home are made from stainless steel.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel

Therefore, you must have the knowledge of ‘how to remove rust from stainless steel’. Just like iron, gold, and silver are prone to corrosion, stainless steel is also prone to corrosion. Steel items that form rust lose their fancy appearance. If you don’t want the rust to ruin your costly stainless items, you should remove the rust as soon as you notice it. We have mentioned some tips and tricks on how to get rid of rust from stainless steel items.

Read these Methods on How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel

Rust is an outcome of the oxidation process that items undergo when they come into contact with oxygen, water, or another oxidizing substance. The oxidation process is nothing but a chemical reaction. Rust, which is also known as corrosion, is a coating that occurs on the surface of objects that are made from iron or metal alloys containing iron.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel
Image Credit: The Rust Store

In case the stainless steel items and surfaces inside your home have gathered rust, you should remove the rust. We have provided some simple methods on how to remove rust from stainless steel here. These tips involve the use of items that must be easily available in the pantry of your home. We have also shared some things you should avoid while trying to get rid of the rust.

Baking Soda Paste

If you want to remove rust from the cookware, utensils, dishwasher, and other items and surfaces using baking soda, the method we have described here will help you. Take 2 cups of water and add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to it. Now, rub the paste on the area that has rust in the direction of the grain with a soft cloth. Rinse the area and wipe it using a damp paper towel.

Needless to say, even large items and surfaces, such as stainless steel sinks and countertops, become rusty. If you want to remove the rust from such items and surfaces, you should use the method explained here. First of all, remove the debris and dampen the entire area that is rusted. Now, sprinkle a layer of baking soda over the area.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel
Image Credit: House of Knives Australia

Let it sit for 30 minutes to an hour. Scrub the area using a soft bristle brush. Rinse the area and dry it with a paper towel. Baking soda is an extremely mild abrasive, and so, it won’t lead to scratches or any other imperfections that might lead to damaging your stainless steel items and surfaces further.

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Vinegar

Now that you have learned how to remove rust from stainless steel with the help of baking soda, let’s have a look at how you can get rid of rust with the help of vinegar. Fill a spray bottle with undiluted white vinegar. Wipe the vinegar on the area that is rusted using a soft cleaning cloth. Rinse the area with water. If an item that has become rusty is small, you can soak it overnight in a container full of vinegar.

It’s worth mentioning here that vinegar is not a strong defense against the rust formed on stainless steel. Vinegar works on light spots of rust, but it does not work on stubborn rust. Moreover, you should not use vinegar on stainless steel items and surfaces that have an oleophobic coating. This coating is applied to resist fingerprints. Vinegar can damage the oleophobic coating, and thereby, make the items and surfaces prone to fingerprints.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel
Image Credit: AZ Rust

Lemon Juice and Baking Soda

While the first method involves the use of only baking soda, this method involves the use of baking soda and lemon juice together. Take an equal amount of both the items and form a paste. Now, apply this paste to an area that is rusted.

Take a damp cloth to clean the paste from the area. If you don’t get the desired results, you can apply the paste again. Let the paste sit for at least 30 minutes before cleaning it away. If you want, you can use only lemon juice to get rid of the rust.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel
Image Credit: Femina.in

Along with learning the methods that incorporate the use of items available at home, you should also know about how to remove rust from stainless steel with the help of products available in the market. If you are not someone who likes to experiment or rely on trial-and-error ways, you can buy the rust removal products from the online or offline store.

It’s usually recommended to use cleaners that contain oxalic acid in order to discard rust that is formed on stainless steel. You should follow the instructions mentioned on the packaging of the cleaner to get the best results. You can also purchase rust removal products or cleaners when the methods listed above don’t lead to satisfactory results.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel: What to Avoid

When it comes to removing rust from stainless steel, you should learn not only the reliable methods but also things that you should avoid. We have specified a few things that you should avoid at all costs while trying to get rid of rust from your stainless steel items and surfaces.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel
Image Credit: Made-in-China.com

If you are using a cleaner, make sure to avoid any cleaner that contains chlorides. They are substances that are considered to be a part of the chloride family, for example, chlorine, fluorine, iodine, and bromine.

Just like cleaners, the scrubbers you use also require special attention if you want to learn how to remove rust from stainless steel properly. You should not use harsh scrubbers like steel wool and brushes. In fact, you should avoid scrubbing completely while removing rust from stainless steel. Harsh scrubbers can cause scratches on your stainless steel items and surfaces.

Use these Techniques to Prevent Rust on Stainless Steel

It is always said that prevention is better than cure. This saying also applies in the case of rust occurring on the stainless steel. You can prevent your stainless steel items and surfaces from becoming rusted by taking care of certain points on a regular basis.

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Appliances, cookware, utensils, countertops, sinks, and other items and surfaces become susceptible to corrosion due to moisture and other factors. You can control or minimize moisture with the help of appropriate solutions, such as air conditioners and dehumidifiers. You should ensure that liquids are not spilled in a refrigerator, on a countertop, in a sink, in a utensil, and so on. If you take the necessary care, you might never have to worry about how to remove rust from stainless steel.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel
Image Credit: Reader’s Digest

Whenever you notice any spill or spot or stainless steel, clean it right away using a soft cloth or paper towel. You should wipe away the fingerprints, marks, smudges, smears, etc., everyday as a part of routine cleaning. You can use dish detergent and warm water for this purpose.

After removing the fingerprints and other spots, you should clean the items and surfaces with a dampened cloth. Make sure to dry the items and surfaces once they are cleaned. Don’t leave cookware and utensils soaking in the kitchen sink for too long. You should take extra care if you live in a coastal area, as moisture is high in such areas.

Why Stainless Steel is Popular and Why It Gets Rusted?

The fact that you are reading this blog post on how to remove rust from stainless steel proves that you have objects made from stainless steel in your home. Just like you, many others also have objects made from stainless steel in their homes or workplaces.

Therefore, it makes sense to know why stainless steel is such a popular material. Stainless is an alloy of iron and carbon, i.e., a mixture of iron and carbon and other elements that comprise both metals and nonmetals. It contains at least 11% chromium, which is a metal known for its properties like being hard, brittle, and lustrous. Stainless steel is an incredibly durable, strong, and attractive metal.

How to Remove Rust from Stainless Steel
Image Credit: ArchiExpo

Several items and surfaces are manufactured from stainless steel for use in residential, commercial, and industrial environments. Stainless steel is also a low-maintenance, temperature-resistant, and corrosion-resistant material. It is used in various fields ranging from infrastructure and entertainment to medical and technology. However, the fact that you are learning how to remove rust from stainless steel implies that the objects made from this metal can become rusted. 

People prefer to have items and surfaces made from stainless steel in their homes or workplaces because of the aesthetic appeal. A kitchen with stainless steel appliances, cookware, or utensils looks shiny due to the color of the steel.

But when any of the items or surfaces becomes rusted, the overall look of your kitchen or any other area within your premises gets compromised. Over time, rust or corrosion can also affect the durability, performance, or strength of stainless steel. Thus, you should use suitable methods in the right way to get rid of rust formed on stainless steel.

Final Thoughts

Stainless steel items and surfaces can notch up the aesthetic appeal of your home. So, if you want to maintain that appeal, you should know how to prevent rust and remove rust from stainless steel. Show due diligence whenever you use any method or product to remove the rust.

Priya Bhagtani

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