Basic Cleaning and Maintenance Tips for Wrought Iron

You love the wrought iron design you added to your home. But your fence, railing, or other piece seems less strong and less luxurious when it’s coated with a layer of dust or its paint has started to chip.

Weather conditions or basic wear and tear can keep your wrought iron from looking its best. Whether you installed a piece inside or outdoors, you should inspect and clean your fixture on a regular basis. Use these tips to get started.

Basic Cleaning

Cleaning up right before some guests come over? For day-to-day maintenance, you can simply dust your product. Get a microfibre cloth or feather duster and run it across the surface. You might want to clean between the crevices if it’s been a while since you dusted. microfibre cloths are preferred since they capture dust instead of pushing it to the ground or back into the air.

Deep Cleaning
If you notice more than a little dust on your fixture, clean the wrought iron with products you have around your home already.

Combine a capful of dish soap or a 1/4 cup of household cleaner to a half-gallon of water. Don’t use furniture polish spray or another harsh chemical; an average, all-purpose cleaner will do just fine. Clean your fence, gate, railing, staircase, or another furnishing with the solution, a spray bottle, and a cloth. Wipe off any dirt or grime with a circular motion. Dry the furnishing completely using a dry cloth afterward.

Removing and Preventing Rust
When you put up a wrought iron product, you gain one prominent enemy: rust. Rust will corrode your railing, fence, gate, or staircase until it turns from stylish to shabby. Even if you purchased an iron product with rustproof coating, that protection could wear off and leave your furnishings vulnerable.

Rescue your fixture with these tips for rust removal.

    Use a wire brush or sandpaper to scrub away light rust. For large patches of loose, flaky rust, use a metal scraper, pickaxe, or wire brush attachment on your drill. You need scrub hard enough to remove all the rust, but not enough to damage your product.
    Get a fine steel-wool pad and dip it in kerosene. This chemical will remove any stains or discoloration the rust caused. Brush out the spots. Make sure to wear gloves and safety glasses to avoid harmful effects from the kerosene. Since kerosene is flammable, don’t work near an open flame.
    For especially stubborn spots, purchase a commercial rust dissolver and follow the instructions.

Once you have cleared off any rust, clean the surface with water mixed with a household cleaner and let the product dry out completely. Then keep the rust from returning.

    Coat your fixture with liquid wax, found at most automotive stores. You should let the wax dry overnight, and then buff the wrought iron using a soft cloth.
    If you aren’t planning to paint the item, apply a rust-resistant primer followed by the rust-resistant sealer.
    Check the conditions around your product. Is it in the path of a sprinkler? Is it in the area where water runs off from your eavestroughs? Is it near a swimming pool? Keep wrought iron away from water as much as possible. When you expect a lot of rain or snow, put a tarp over your outdoor products.

Make checking for rust a habit. Take a close look at hinges or other tight spots that could trap water.

A new coat of paint solves several issues when your wrought iron seems lackluster compared to when you first installed it. It improves the appearance of the area, and it prevents damage by putting a layer between the iron and the air. Whether you repaint or add a brand-new coat, follow these suggestions.

    Clean up any paint that’s bubbling or flaking off. Like with rust, use a wire brush or wire brush attachment on your drill. Take care of any rust at this stage.
    Sand the paint in that area down to the bare metal.
    Clean and dry the surface.
    Cover surrounding plants, concrete, or other surfaces with a tarp. Even if you paint carefully, you don’t want to risk creating another problem to clean up later.
    Spray on rust-resistant primer, and let it sit for as long as the manufacturer instructs. Some paint will already contain primer.
    Apply paint. Spray paints result in the best coverage, but whatever brand you choose, make sure you get paint into every crevice.
    Depending on the paint, apply additional coats and let the paint dry.

With the occasional paint job, your wrought iron will always look new.

Ask your manufacturer what other maintenance tips they would suggest and what features keep your product safe.

You bought your wrought iron piece to add an air of sophistication and strength to your home. Don’t let a little dust or rust let that goal fall to the wayside. Keep your property looking beautiful by cleaning and maintaining your wrought iron fixture.

For more tips and information, don’t hesitate to contact our helpful staff at Riverside Ironworks!

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