Does Lemon Remove Rust? – That Work!!

Lemon is a common kitchen ingredient full of citric acid. Citric acid works as a natural cleaner and disinfecting agent. Some people suggest that making a paste by combining citric acid, water, and kosher salt can help remove rust. In the real sense, does lemon remove rust?

Yes, lemon can remove rust which affects all smooth surfaces. It is the ideal natural solution to remove rust on all metals. However, to get better results, use salt to create an acidic mixture which is known to be an effective way to remove rust.

Lemon is known for its acidic properties and its ability to kill bacteria. Lemon extracts can clean your kitchen appliances, such as microwave ovens and dishwashers. Additionally, lemons can help remove stains from tiles and whiten your clothes. Lemon also happens to be an effective ingredient for removing rust.

Just make the paste as said in the introduction and apply the paste to rusty objects. Leave the paste on the rust for a few hours, then scrub it off the rusted area. It claims that lemon can remove rust in 15 minutes or less. However, this is more than just a claim as it is effective.

To learn how lemon removes rust is our focus on this page. We also share some other natural and artificial alternative options to get rid of rust. Read on.

How Does Rust Occur On Surfaces?

Metal surfaces begin to rust when they face prolonged contact with moisture, especially in the open air. This process is usually known as Oxidation. This procedure affects the metal skin and changes it to a reddish-brown color.

The ideal way to stop your metal equipment and surfaces from rust is by making sure they remain dry regularly. This has proven to be difficult, even for careful workers.

How Does Rust Occur On Surfaces

Moreover, due to the inability of keeping metal away from water for a long time, you could use a natural method of removing rust or buy rust removal products. The latter solution comes with many cons which are environmental and health.

Why Is Lemon A Good Solution To Remove Rust?

Lemon is an ideal solution to remove rust because it offers a cheaper and effective way to get rid of rust. These fruit is a good rust cleaners and lemon does remove dust because they:

Why Is Lemon A Good Solution To Remove Rust

Act as Acidic compound

Lemon has citric acid. They are more acidic than grape and orange juice which makes them an effective choice to clean rusty surfaces.

While many soap agents are made from alkaline, acidic elements are more effective against rust. They can remove completely all rust made by other acids. Lemons are effective against stains. Irrespective of how careful we are, stains find their way to our belongings.

These stains can be caused by alcohol, lipstick, sweat and dust. These stains are acidic and because lemon is made from acid, it is an effective solution. You could also use it to remove stains on your plates, cupboard and sinks.

Removes alkaline dirt

Lemon juice is also effective against alkaline rust and stains called limescale. Limescale is a white element that is found in our water closets and bathtubs.

When you use the right lemon solution the acid in the Lemon reacts with the calcium carbonate and iron oxide to remove the deposits.

Antibacterial benefits

Many are not aware of the antibacterial elements in lemon. The presence of lemon in your home makes the environment unfavorable for all types of bacteria, fungi and algae.

But note that, the antibacterial benefit of lemon doesn’t have the same result on pathogens, as it doesn’t kill them, but makes them docile.

Lemon removes odors

Lemon has been known to remove several types of foul smells which can make the environment difficult to breathe. When you notice the location the smell is coming from, like garbage, basements or cars.

Just slice a lemon and put it there. You could also boil the lemon skin to get more fragrance to fight against the stench around. If you use garlic regularly and can’t cope with the smell, you could rub your palms on lemon to remove the intense smell.

5 Ways To Remove Rust Besides Using Lemon

While using lemon is a good rust removal solution, there are other options available which you can use

Ways To Remove Rust Besides Using Lemon

  • Scrub materials: If the rust is at the early stages, you could use a good scrub for the surface. You may use sandpaper, iron wool or even a wire brush to grease the surface. Even when you notice that the rust is harsh, you could use this solution to remove the outer rust before getting another rust removal method.
  • White Vinegar: When you notice that the rust is more serious, you could opt for white vinegar. The white vinegar has an acetic acid which can dissolve difficult rust. For little personal things like chains or earrings, you can soak them in vinegar for a few minutes. After some time, rinse these items with clean water, because if the white vinegar is left, it could harm the surface.
  • Baking Powder: Many people aren’t aware that they can use Baking powder to solve rust problems. To effectively use this solution, make a soda solution thick enough with little water, then stick to the rusted metal surface. Leave for some minutes and scrub with a brush. You should repeat this process three to four times till all rust comes off.
  • Potato: Potatoes are sweet, but you should try them in cleaning rusted surfaces. It works particularly well on pans, knives, spoons and knives. You should consider sprinkling small salt on the raw potato and rubbing it slowly into the rusted surface. Potatoes have oxalic acid which dissolves rust quickly.
  • Coke: Many who have mistakenly dropped a coin in a glass filled with Coke will notice how clean it came out. Coke and many soft drinks have high amounts of phosphoric acid which are great for rusted metals. The problem, however, is cleaning it, because it will be sticky.


Having rusted metals is inevitable, therefore we must use the right solution to remove rust and stains.

So does lemon remove rust? Yes, especially when mixed with saltwater. The acidic element in lemon with the high alkaline solution from the salt makes it a perfect combo to get rid of rust.

Like we mentioned in the article, there are other rust removal alternatives that you can use to remove rust and stains.

Evan Cooper

Evan Cooper

Hi, I’m Evan Cooper, the founder and an editor of this site, Doesitrust. I’m a chemical engineer and working in a rust-eliminating paint manufacturing company. Besides this profession, I’m a researcher and blogger.

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