3 easy ways to remove rust from your garden tools

A photo of selection of tools with rust removed

Keeping your tools in good order is one of the key gardening skills. Here are a few tips on rust removal I got together for The Big Garden Shed Declutter: seed and tool swap. I tried them and all seem to work a treat! Let us know how they work for you – and share your own tips on tool maintenance in the comments below.

Vinegar and Baking Soda

  • Fill a container with white vinegar and submerge the rusty tools. Ensure all rusty parts are covered
  • Soak for 10 minutes or ideally 24hrs.
  • Once soaked, remove the tools and scrub with a toothbrush.
  • After scrubbing, fill another container up with 1/3 baking soda, and 2/3 water.
  • Put the vinegar soaked tools in the container for at least 15 minutes.
  • After this, rinse clean the tools with water, and make sure to dry them immediately with paper towels.
  • Apply oil such as coconut oil or WD40 before storage.

Coca-Cola (Coke)

  • Buy some cheap coca cola
  • Pour a sufficient enough amount of the Coca-Cola into the bowl, tub or container.
  • Place your rusty tools in the container and let the settle for 24 hours, depending on the corrosion level of your tools, and make sure the Coca-Cola completely covers the tools. Severely rusted tools may require additional time.
  • Simply remove the tools after no rust is present. Additionally, apply oil or WD-40 on them to help keep them from rusting again.

White Vinegar

  • Place your tools in the bucket and cover them with the vinegar.
  • Let the tools soak for 24 hours in order to absorb the vinegar.
  • After soaking, you must get to scrubbing. The vinegar soaked in the tools will eat into the rust and allow for an easy scrubbing process to remove the rust.

Always use some type oil to lubricate and deter rust such as coconut oil or WD40 after cleaning.

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