Oven cleaner, also called oven-de-greaser and oven-de-scaler, is designed to remove grease and baked-on residues that are typically not removed when you regularly clean your oven. Due to its cleaning prowess, many think it can clean rust. So, does oven cleaner remove rust?
Yes, an Oven cleaner can remove rust from metal surfaces. It is a cost-effective and simple method for removing light to moderate rust from iron and steel surfaces.
The choice for this product is because oven cleaner works best in an environment with less or no air movement. Also, it is safe to use around kids and after removing the rust, be sure to season or refinish the item before storage.
In addition, a commercial oven cleaner can remove rust from metal objects if a vigorous scrubbing action is used together with the chemical compound. Oven cleaners are designed to remove grease and carbon deposits, but any abrasive substance or chemical compounds in an oven cleaner will damage most metals. So, you need to choose wisely.
As you read further, you will see some tips on using oven cleaner to remove rust from homewares, some safety precautions you need to take when removing the rust, and how to refinish an item after removing rust.
How to Get Rid of Rust with Oven Cleaner?
Most household cooking wares are made of cast iron, and even though they are durable, they are still prone to rust, like most metal items. Before you go ahead to use the oven cleaner to remove rust, ensure that the items will be able to fit into a plastic bag, to get the desired result.
Once the items are small enough to fit into a bag, then do the following:
- Clean the item with a clean and damp fabric, then dry it vigorously.
- In a well-ventilated area, spray the oven cleaner all over the rust.
- Place the sprayed item in a plastic bag, close and tighten it and allow the oven cleaner to act on the rust for about twenty-four to forty-eight hours.
- Open the bag, remove the item and scrub it with a ball of steel wool.
- Rinse it thoroughly with warm water.
- If there is any rust remaining, sprinkle enough sea salt or kosher salt over it.
- Cut a piece of potato and use it to scrub the salt into the item to remove rust.
If the potato couldn’t remove the rust, sprinkle more salt and add white vinegar to the rusted part and scrub again. The vinegar will help to loosen the stubborn rust, but you should not use it always because it can damage the cast iron used in manufacturing the cooking ware.
- Rinse the item vigorously and wash it with warm, soapy water, then rinse it again.
Remember not to always use soap on your cast iron cookware because using it frequently can damage the item.
- Dry the item with a clean fabric.
Safety Precautions to Take when Using Oven Cleaner to Remove Rust
Oven cleaner is a cleaning agent that contains some chemical substances that can be hazardous to health.
Here are precautions to take when using it to remove rust:
- Always wear gloves when handling the product to prevent it from touching your skin.
- Always use the product in a well-ventilated environment. If you must use it indoors, make sure that your doors and windows are open.
- Do not allow the product to get in contact with surfaces other than the metallic item you are cleaning, because it can damage wood or any painted surface.
- Keep the product away from where your children or pets can get to it because it is dangerous and poisonous when consumed.
How to Season an Item after Removing Rust with Oven Cleaner?
Follow these steps to season an item after removing rust:
- Apply enough vegetable oil to the inner part of the item and spread it with a clean fabric.
- Heat your oven to 350°, place the item in the middle and allow it to heat for about one to two hours.
- Remove the item and allow it to cool.
Remember that cooking items made with cast iron take more time to cool than other pure metallic items.
- Clean the inner part of the item with a clean fabric before usage or storage.
How to Refinish an Item after Removing Rust with Oven Cleaner?
To refinish an item after removing rust and seasoning, do the following:
- Scrub the item with sandpaper to smoothen the surface and remove any old paint or oven cleaner residue.
- Clean the item with a piece of fabric to remove dirt or dust.
- With a spray or brush, apply a metal primer to the item’s surface and allow it to dry using the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Apply one to two oil-based paint coatings to the entire surface of the item, and allow the paint to dry in between coats.
You can use rust-inhibiting paint if you have one to make the item easier to be maintained in the future.
Note: If the item you want to remove rust from cannot fit into a plastic bag, then this method of rust removal will not work. Always remember to season or refinish the item after removing rust.
Does Oven Cleaner Contain Acid?
Most oven cleaners with a pH value that is within 11 and 13 are powerful alkalines (bases) that are capable of cutting through rust, tough grease, and dirt.
Extreme caution should be applied when using this product because it is poisonous and can cause vomiting when swallowed, and can also cause skin burn or irritation when it touches the skin.
In addition to removing rust from smaller cooking wares, an oven cleaner can help you to clean your oven, clean your baking dishes that are made of glass, and also clean your barbecue grill rack.
Ensure that the item you want to remove rust from is small enough to fit into a plastic bag, to enable the oven cleaner to act on the rust.