How to Remove Rust Spots With Borax

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Use a borax mixture to remove rust from surfaces including tile.
Use a borax mixture to remove rust from surfaces including tile. (Image: rust image by Alison Bowden from Fotolia.com)

Like dirt and grime, rust is not attractive and it can spread if not removed from the surface it has set into. Rust forms when liquid is allowed to stand on a metal surface that is prone to oxidation, such as steel or iron. The liquid eventually eats into the metal surface and deteriorates it as oxidation does its work. A number of expensive commercial chemicals are on the market for removing rust, but the naturally occurring compound borax, a salt of boric acid, can also remove rust from your home's or business' surfaces without the expense or hassle of other chemicals.

Things You'll Need

  • Borax
  • Lemon juice
  • 2 buckets or pots
  • Old spoon
  • Latex gloves
  • 3 cloths or rags
  • Nose mask (optional)

Mix 1 cup of borax and 1/2 cup of lemon juice in a bucket or pot. Stir the mixture into a paste using an old spoon. Wear latex gloves to keep your hands clean.

Scoop the borax mixture onto the rust stain you want to remove. Let the mixture sit on the stain until the paste starts to dry. Scrub the paste into the rust using a cloth or rag.

Fill a bucket or pot with 1 gallon or warm water. Dip clean cloth or rag into the water. Wring out excess water.

Wipe the borax paste from the rust stain with the wet cloth or rag. Redip the cloth or rag. Wipe/rinse the area thoroughly with the cloth or rag.

Dry the area where the rust was with a dry cloth or rag.

Tips & Warnings

  • The borax mixture is safe to use on all surfaces including ceramic tiles as well as aluminum surfaces.
  • If the smell of borax is overwhelming to you, wear a nose mask and work in a well-ventilated area.

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