How to Remove Rust From Knives?

If they are made from steel, kitchen knives can rust. The rust isn’t dangerous, and the knife can still be used safely. Rusted knives can cause a smear on your kitchen and add to the cost of food preparation. If rust isn’t treated, it can make a knife useless.

Rust is the common term for iron oxide, a reddish-orange flaky compound that you find sprinkled on metals. This happens when iron and oxygen react with moisture. It doesn’t have to be water at all. It could be just water reacting with iron in a metal.

There are many ways you can use to get rid of rust on your kitchen knives, including baking soda use. In this article, we will introduce you to how to remove rust from knives.  Let’s read it now. 

Types of Steel and How They Rust

There are two main types of steel: carbon and stainless.

The carbon one is mainly iron, with some carbon and other metals. Stainless steel is composed of iron, chromium (about 15%), and carbon. The iron is protected from oxygen oxidation by the chromium that surrounds it. The blade’s durability is affected by chromium, so it will need to be sharpened more often than carbon steel.

how to remove rust from knives

Although stainless steel is more resistant than carbon steel, it doesn’t mean it is immune to rust. Although stainless steel can withstand more moisture than carbon, it can still rust if used improperly. Because they are not ironed, only titanium and ceramic knives can withstand rust 100%.

How to Remove Rust From Knives with Baking Soda

1. What is Baking Soda?

Baking soda (or bicarbonate soda) is a salt that has been derived from a mineral found in mineral springs. It has a slightly salty flavor. It is slightly acidic (opposite to acidic), which means it can react with acids and create carbon dioxide bubbles. These properties are what make it suitable for baking as they cause the dough to rise.

Baking soda can be used in its entirety as an alkaline salt, provided that heat is applied. The two can react to raise the dough as long as they are combined with other acidic ingredients. The pastry will taste metallic if it doesn’t have enough acid to neutralize the baking soda.

2. What Makes Baking Soda Great for Cleaning?

  • It forms air bubbles. 

As we’ve seen, baking soda reacts with acid to create air bubbles. These bubbles can lift stains. This is why baking soda is combined with vinegar, an acid to create a powerful cleaning team.

  • It is full of Grit

Baking soda is a basic soap, but soap has fat molecules which make it less harsh. Baking soda can be used to remove stubborn stains or particles that soap cannot.

  • It absorbs bad odors

Ever wonder why people keep a box of baking powder in their refrigerators or stores? It all comes down to the odors. The majority of odors are acidic.

Baking soda reacts with acids in the air to neutralize them, leaving the air fresh and clean. Baking soda is superior to air fresheners, as it actually eliminates the bad smell. Baking soda loses its reactivity over time so it is important to continue mixing it and changing it out eventually.

Pros of using baking soda

  • Most materials are easily available in most homes.
  • This method is more affordable than the more complex ones.
  • Baking soda does not harm metallic objects.

Cons of using baking soda

  • The method is time-consuming because it requires constant abrasive action. If you have many rusted objects or large areas to clean up, this can cause the process to be slow and costly.

 Other Ways to Remove Rust From Knives

1. Use White Vinegar to Remove Rust

Is there anything vinegar cannot clean? Submerge any rusty knives or tools in vinegar for a few hours. Then let them rest overnight. After they have been thoroughly soaked, take them out of the vinegar and scrub off the rust with steel wool or wire brush. This may require some elbow grease. Repeat the process if there are any rust spots. If this happens, soak the object for a longer time. After removing all rust, wash the object with dish soap and water. Dry it thoroughly.

2. The Lemon Juice Method

Lemon juice can be used to remove rust from knife. This method is very similar to vinegar, but with a few minor differences. It’s a simple task that anyone can do with items they already have at home. Fill a tall glass with lemon juice. It doesn’t matter whether the lemon juice is from a bottle, or freshly squeezed. Fill the rest of the glass with warm tap water.

Let your rusty knives sit in the lemon juice for 10 minutes, blade down. The lemon juice should allow the corrosion spots to get ample time to soften. Take the knives out of the box and use a sponge or scrub pad to clean the blades. You should not use any pad that has metal in it as this could scratch the blade. This should be sufficient if the rust is  only surface.

3. Use Dish Soap to Remove Rust and a Salted Potato

We said it: A potato. Oxalic acid is a key ingredient of many cleaning products. All potatoes contain it. Oxalic acid is a key ingredient in many cleaning products. It dissolves rust. Cut a potato in half. Cover the cut area with dish soap and sprinkle salt or baking soda on the potato. Salt/baking soda can be used as a mild abrasive in order to remove rust as it dissolves. To remove the rust, rub the potato on the affected area. Rinse well and dry.

4. Use Citric Acid to Remove Rust

You can find citric acid in grocery stores and supermarkets. It works well to remove rust. However, it can also remove paint or other coatings so it might not be the best option for every piece. Mix three tablespoons of citric acids in a bowl of warm water. Submerge the rusty metal for at least overnight. Cleanse the rusty metal with hot water the next day.

5. To Get Rid of Rust, Use a Chemical Solution Like Metal Glo

Metal Glo is a chemical that can be used to remove rust from metal. This chemical solution is safe for use on silverware, cookware, jewelry, and knives. To avoid scratching your knife’s surface, rub Metal Glo along its grain pattern.

6. Use Naval Jelly to Remove Rust From Large Objects (but keep it away from knives)

You can also use Naval Jelly to remove large amounts of rust from your home (e.g., patio furniture, grills, tools and mailboxes), or to treat rust on larger objects such as lawn chairs, garden furniture, mailboxes, mailboxes, post lights, etc. You can spray or paint the solution onto the rusted item using Naval Jelly. The rust will dissolve in five to ten minutes. Note: This only works for objects made of thick metals such as the ones listed above. This should not be used on stainless steel or thin metal.

7. Get Rid of Rust With a Friend, Bar Keepers

It’s a wonderful cleaner that you won’t believe you haven’t heard of. Bar Keepers Friend is a very popular cleaner that can remove rust from stainless steel knives. This is an inexpensive, simple and effective way to remove rust from knives, regardless of whether you have it in your home.

Use the cleaner to clean the rusty blade. The cleaner comes in powder form so there is no need to be too careful. Use as much as you like. Use a sponge or rag to scrub the blade. You will likely notice the majority of the rust disappearing while you scrub. After you’re done, rinse the knife off and dry it with a towel. You should now be free from rust.

Protect your Knives From Rust

Protective measures are the best way to prevent rust and extend the life of your knives. You can quickly remove stains and spots with simple household cleaners, even if they are the first signs of rust.

Knife sheaths and storage containers protect your knives from moisture and damage. This will ensure that your favorite tool is ready for any outdoor adventure or home improvement project.


It might seem daunting to remove rust from knives. This critical task is easy. It is important to maintain your knives using oils or polish so they don’t rust. However, knowing that you can repair your knives if they do rust can be a great relief. You now know what to do if your beloved kitchen knives get rusty during a move. After removing rust, you should sharpen knives almost every day.

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