Whether it is your car, bike, or anything metal, even your garden furniture, rust is something that can very well spoil its looks and structure. If it is another piece of equipment, it can affect its function. The same goes for the bolts (lock nuts) of machinery or your vehicle. Bolts are an important component of any piece of equipment. They hold the heavy pieces of the equipment together to ensure proper functioning.
There are several ways you can get rid of rust and rust stains :
Vinegar contains citric and acetic acids which act as great ingredients in removing the rust. They are more useful for the parts that are small and can be soaked. This makes vinegar an ideal option to clean rust from the nuts. All you need to do is to take them out, pour the vinegar in a cup, and soak them in the vinegar. Leave them there for a little more than a day. After that time has passed, take them out, scrub them with a brush and you should see the rust come off. Once you are done, rinse them with tap water to wash away the residue. Your screws should now be shiny and the rust must be gone.
In the more unfortunate situations, there might be a little rust still left. You can repeat this process and now it would surely be gone.
Try with lemon
If you want to clean lock nuts, keep in mind that rusty components usually get jammed and difficult to remove, in such scenarios, you can make use of grease to take them out. If that doesn’t work there are other tricks too that can help you take them out.
Now, get two ingredients. A lemon or lime and some salt. To clean the lock nut from the rust, apply salt on the rusted nut and then rub it. After the nut is properly coated, pour a little lemon or lime juice on the salt. Squeeze out as much juice as you can and then leave it there to do its work.
After two to three hours have passed, scrub the paste off. You could use steel wool or a scourer, but be gentle in order not to damage the metal further. Alternatively, to clean the lock nut you can soak it in the solution of lemon juice and salt. This would reduce the scrubbing part and minimize the risk of deforming the metal.
Thought about baking soda?
If you do not want to use vinegar or the lemon salt mixture to clean lock nuts, you can use baking soda too. All you have to do is make a paste of water and baking soda in a bowl and make sure it’s neither too thick nor too runny. Apply the paste to the rusted nut and leave it for a few hours. Use a toothbrush to scrub the paste off. This will also take the rust off along with the paste.
While you’re in the bathroom, you could also try using soap – the kind that sits in a dish on the side of the bath. You’ll also need a potato (you probably won’t find that in the bathroom). Cut the potato in half, and rub the inner bit on the soap until it’s coated. Place the coated end of the potato on the rust for a couple of hours, then brush off the soap.
Use the power of electricity
Electrolysis in an amazing way to remove rust from different materials and could be used to clean lock nuts. You will need the following.
- Car battery charger,
- A water container,
- A sacrificial piece of metal-containing iron,
- Washing soda, (not baking soda)
Unplug the charger, submerge both the pieces of metal in the water. Connect the positive terminal of the charger to the sacrificial metal and the negative terminal to the piece of metal you want rust removed from (lock nuts in our case). Plug the charger and switch it on and leave it for an hour. You will see the electrolysis doing its work and the nuts losing the rust.
If the above methods are too time-consuming, then why not try the multi-use WD-40 spray. With it, all you need to do is to spray a good amount of the formula on the lock nuts and leave them for a few seconds (not minutes, not hours, not days). After a little while, use a toothbrush to scrub off the rust to clean the locknuts.
How to get rid of rust stains
Rust doesn’t only affect the metal and its shape, it also makes it difficult for us if our clothes or other materials catch its stains as it touches them.
If your clothes catch rust stains, you could try using some lemon juice. Rub the affected area with lemon juice, but be careful not to spread the stain any further while you do it. Once the stain has loosened up, rinse the clothing material with running water to take out the lemon juice and then launder as usual.
If the stain is firm or the fabric is thick, you might want to use some salt along with the lemon juice and then scrub the stain.
If the stain is on a material other than fabric, like a wall, you could rinse it with water and use a brush to make it loosen up. And then rinse it again once you are done. You could also use some stain removing products commercially available in the market.