I want to know how to clean metal patio furniture without causing it to rust. We have a new cast iron table and chairs that we bought to replace the old, rusted ones the previous owner left behind. Since we live in a pretty humid place now, I’m worried about how long the furniture will last.
Alice Harrison, Cincinnati, OH
Yes, high humidity can wreak havoc on metal, whether it’s outdoors or in an indoor area with damp conditions. But, I can tell you how to clean metal patio furniture with a variety of different home remedies. You can make a DIY rust remover and protect it from rusting in the future. The trick is to be vigilant.
If you take the time to wipe down your chairs and table every month or two, you should be able to catch any signs of rust stains before it causes a problem. And as soon as you see rust, simply sand it off and touch up the paint. It’s also smart to cover up or store your furniture in the rainy and snowy months for additional protection.
It doesn’t have to be challenging to know how to remove rust from cast iron. To clean cast iron, you’ll need to gather a few things before you get started. Just as when you clean an iron, you’ll want a sponge and a lint-free towel. You’ll also need mild detergent and a bucket of lukewarm water.
After you’ve gathered these supplies, it’s simply a matter of wiping down your furniture. If there are some rust spots that are difficult to remove, you may need an old toothbrush or other brush to get the rust flakes off. Finally, rinse away any detergent residue with cold water, and dry everything well with the towel.
You can use this same procedure for removing old adhesive residue from metal. If a price or care sticker lingers on your furniture, soap and water usually do the trick to get rid of it. You can also try dabbing the spot with vinegar or acetone if you have a particularly stubborn sticky spot.
To clean your patio floor and remove rust stains from concrete best mix lemon juice and vinegar. Spray the solution on the rust stain and let it sink in a bit. Rub with an old cloth and the rust on the concrete floor will be gone.
After you clean away rust, you may decide to paint your patio furniture to match a certain design scheme. It helps to remove the old paint first, particularly if it has begun to flake off. Get spray paint off metal by sanding either by hand or using a small electric sander.
After painting with your new favorite color, use the garden hose as a way to clean paint rollers. Wear some old clothes, hold out the roller and spray it with a power nozzle on the hose, being sure to point it away from everything you value. The paint will come right off.
If you have chair cushions, you can clean those, too. Try wiping them down with a mixture of a teaspoon each of dishwashing soap and Borax in a quart of warm water. Be sure to rinse well and let them dry in the sunshine. You might even want to spray on a fabric protector afterward to protect them from future stains.
If you have wicker outdoor furniture, it’s important not to get the material too wet, as you don’t want it to warp. Cleaning wicker furniture requires regular dusting and vacuuming to remove dirt and dust. Treat stains as they occur with a little dish soap and water and thoroughly dry the area when finished.
See this article for more information about maintaining all sorts of patio and outdoor furniture: https://www.tipsbulletin.com/how-to-clean-patio-furniture/