How to Clean Metal


Regular cleaning is necessary if you want your metal to stay shiny and bright. Doing this will keep the piece in top condition and extend its lifespan.

Rust is an unfortunately common issue that can negatively impact metal. While it may turn your metal into a dull orange color, several easy solutions exist to remove rust quickly and effectively.


Vinegar is an all-natural cleaning agent that can remove stains and grime from metal objects. Additionally, it works effectively at eliminating rust from these metallic items.

Melissa Maker, the founder of Toronto-based cleaning service Clean My Space, recommends that tools be soaked in water and vinegar for several hours or days to dissolve rust.

Vinegar can be effective on stainless steel and enameled cast iron surfaces, but it should not be used on metal countertops or cooking utensils due to its potential corrosivity.

Baking soda

Baking soda is an all-purpose cleaner, eliminating rust and grime from metal surfaces. Additionally, it works as an effective natural air freshener.

Baking soda stands out among other cleaners because it will not leave behind a stain after you rinse it away. This makes it especially suitable for stainless steel, which has a protective chromium layer that harsh chemicals may damage.

However, caution should be exercised when using baking soda on aluminum cookware or other metals since it is abrasive and can damage or discolor lightly sealed surfaces. Therefore, use baking soda quickly and rinse it off thoroughly for the best results.

Citric acid

Citric acid is a cost-effective, safe, and efficient way to clean metal. It’s often used to eliminate rust stains from stainless steel and other metals.

Passivating stainless steel parts for medical and semiconductor industries is another application of this process. This eliminates iron atoms to prevent corrosion of the metal.

Soak rusty items in a citric acid and water solution, then scrub with either a scouring pad or a brass wire brush. This solution will quickly and effectively remove rust.

Steel wool

Steel wool is an invaluable tool around the home for cleaning metal surfaces. Not only does it clean metal surfaces, but it also has the bonus of being environmentally friendly!

Steel wool can easily clean surfaces by dipping them in water and scrubbing away stains. The abrasive properties of the steel wool will help lift dirt and grime without scratching the surface.

Steel wool comes in various grades. The coarser the grade, the more abrasive it is. While this can be useful for polishing rust or scratches, it could also damage wood and other surfaces.


The lemon tree (Citrus limon) fruit has culinary and non-culinary uses worldwide. The rind and pulp can be used in cooking, while its juice has antibacterial properties.

Lemon juice contains citric acid, breaking down grease and dirt on copper and brass vessels, making it an effective natural disinfectant. All you have to do is dip a clean cloth or sponge into some fresh lemon juice and rub the surface of your vessel for some gentle cleansing.

Lemon juice is an effective solution for removing limescale around bathroom faucets and drains. It may also eliminate soap scum and marks on glass shower doors.


Salt is an effective natural cleaner for metal surfaces, such as aluminum, copper, and steel. Salt’s natural cleaning power makes it the go-to choice for many different metals in the household.

Silver can also be cleaned with salt. To give silver cutlery or other objects a new lease on life, place them in a pan of water, sprinkle salt over the top, and boil.

Rust can also be removed from metal with salt. To do this, make a paste out of salt and lemon juice, rub the rusty area with this mixture, wait for it to dry, then wipe it away with a clean cotton or paper towels.


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