Removing Rust Stains from Fabric and Clothing

No matter how the stain got on your clothing, a rust stain can usually be removed by following a few simple steps. This is a page about removing rust stains on clothing.
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I scoured the internet in search of the best way of removing rust stains from clothes. The method I ran into the most was rubbing salt into the stain with vinegar and letting it dry in the sun. Sadly, it didn't work. I feel like there wasn't even a slight lift of the stain with this method.

Next, I will try boiling it with cream of tartar.

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September 8, 2004

Do not use bleach to get out rust stains. It sets rust. Watch those cleaners with bleach additives. By Diamondee

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Questions

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January 30, 2018

I have an expensive Matelesse bedspread that is covered with rust like spots. Can a dry cleaner remove them? The suggestions to remove on clothing won't work as it is a huge surface. Thanks.

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January 30, 20180 found this helpful
Best Answer

Try rubbing fresh lemon juice on the spots then letting it sit out in the sunshine to dry.

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January 30, 20181 found this helpful
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I would take an expensive spread to a dry cleaner. I would try to clean a cheaper item myself.

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February 25, 2018

How do you get whites whiter when you have rusty water? Bleach doesn't work.

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February 25, 20180 found this helpful
Best Answer

This may help you:

www.thespruce.com/rusty-water-laundry-problems-and...

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According to the site, it says you can install a water softener, phosphate feeder, or a chlorinating filter (but that can be costly) so a non-precipitating packaged water softener may help.

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February 26, 20181 found this helpful
Best Answer

You may have set the rust stains if you used bleach but no harm in trying other suggestions.

  • Please check the label on Rust X as it is for metal and other materials but it is not recommended for clothing/material.
  • There is a product called Whisk Rust Remover that I have have used and it will remove rust stains from clothing.
  • Whisk is not always easy to find in Walmart, Target and similar stores so ask for it if it is not in the laundry aisle. Or buy on line:
  • www.amazon.com/.../ref=dp_olp_new_mbc?tag=thrif06-20 (Affiliate Link)
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  • Lemon juice and salt will usually work. Sprinkle salt on the rust stain then squeeze fresh lemon juice onto the salt and spread the garment in the sun to dry. You should have no problems with white or ecru fabrics. But, always test on a seam or inconspicuous spot.
  • It works best if material is kept damp and not allowed to dry in the sun (you can sprinkle with water).
  • Info from a web site:
  • Rust stains cannot be removed by normal laundering and using will make them permanent. If the stains remain after treating, repeat the steps. Do not put the stained clothing in the dryer because high heat will set the stains.
  • Here are a couple of links with suggestions on using baking soda and laundry detergent.
  • www.arielarabia.com/.../how-to-remove-rust-stains-from-clothing
  • tide.com/.../rust-stains
  • Try different suggestions and see what works for you.
  • www.thespruce.com/how-to-remove-rust-stains-2147064

Information only:

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www.rust-x.com/

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May 29, 2009

Does anyone know how to get rust stains out of (white) clothing?

By TJ from Knoxville, TN

Answers

May 30, 20090 found this helpful

I have been able to get out rust stains using old-fashioned rust remover. It comes in a rust-colored small plastic squeeze container. White lettering. May not be with the laundry aids, but in the cleaning section...most often used to clean rust stains on toilets, sinks, and tubs. It is very caustic, so use carefully and read the directions. If it doesn't give info on fabric stains, then I believe that squirting some on full strength is what I did, but didn't let it soak long. My mother-in-law likes to use it in her white laundry loads because our water is so high in iron, that it helps keep her whites bright. Good luck!

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June 3, 20090 found this helpful

Yes there is a little brown bottle called rust remover you can get it at Walmart or if you have a Brookshires

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and it works. I use it all the time. All have u do is squirt it on the rust stain and you will see it go before your eyes.

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June 3, 20091 found this helpful

I use a product from the laundry aisle called Whink Rust Remover. It works like magic. Seriously, you can just apply a tiny squirt and watch the rust dissapear. I just used it yesterday on my front porch carpeting. My darling husband left our snow shovel on the carpet this winter and I just squirted a tiny bit on and watched the rust literally dissapear. I know, small minds are easily amused. LOL I did rinse it off with the hose after. It works on concrete too, and I keep a bottle with my laundry supplies. It rins about $6 for an 8 ounce brown colored bottle. You won't be dissapointed.
Sandy/Pittsburgh

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April 1, 2005

I bleached a discoloured white cotton T-shirt and it came out beautifully but a small section was resting on a knob in the sink and now its rusted. I tried vinegar and more bleach on that area but no luck. Any help would be appreciated.

Answers

By ceil (Guest Post)
April 1, 20050 found this helpful

Try Whink...
Available at walmart in a small brown bottle

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By shirley dobie (Guest Post)
April 1, 20051 found this helpful

Sprinkle the stain with salt, drip some lemon juice on it and set it in the sun.

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By (Guest Post)
April 1, 20050 found this helpful

You could try some of "the works" toilet bowl cleaner. I got a rust stain out of a shirt that way,,,Good luck..Wendy

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By Becki in Indiana (Guest Post)
April 11, 20050 found this helpful

Try dabbing a little bit of hydrogen peroxide (from the medicine cabinet) on the stain with a Q-tip. Let set for just a few minutes, then wash.

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By Jen (guest) (Guest Post)
June 5, 20050 found this helpful

Any of the methods given below are safe for rust stains on white fabrics, but test on colored fabrics before use.

Lemon Juice - suitable for light stains on delicate fabrics. Spread stain over a bowl of boiling water and sprinkle with lemon juice. After a few minutes, rinse well and repeat if necessary.

Lemon Juice and Salt - sprinkle stain with salt, rub with lemon juice and place in sunlight. Keep moist with lemon juice till stain goes. Rinse well.

Cream of Tartar - (a powder, available in your grocery store spice section) for extensive staining, boil in a solution of 3 tsp. cream of tartar per cup of water. Rinse well OR if less extensive, dampen stain, spread with cream of tartar, hold in steam from boiling kettle. Rinse immediately stain goes. Do not use on fabrics that cannot be washed in hot water.

from www.srfabrics.com/.../stain.htm

Hope this helps!

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By kay (Guest Post)
November 7, 20050 found this helpful

That is the one thing that does work on rust on clothes,putting salt on then lemon then placed where the sunlight can get at it.
I tried this myself awhile back and it really did work..

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September 27, 2011

What is causing orange spots on my whites and how do I get rid of them?

By Lina

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February 26, 2012

How do I remove rust from cotton pants?

By Josie from Melbourne, Australia

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December 17, 2011

How do I remove rust spots from garments?

By Ana

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How can I remove rust marks on my nearly new white Anorak winter coat? Please help.

By CHARLIE MARTIN

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How do you remove rust from the neck of a white shirt? The hanger it was on in the closet broke and rust from the metal part got on the neck of my white Sunday shirt.

By Earl Woodham from Moriarty, NM

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Archives

ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

November 17, 2009

I hand washed a pair of light colored pants, and when I went to hang them up to dry there were rust marks on the back of them from the hook and eye I sewed on. Can you tell me how to get those stains off?

Marguerite from Lowellville, Ohio

Answers:

Removing Rust Stains From Fabric

Use something with oxalic acid in it, such as powdered Zud cleaner (found with Comet and those type of cleaners), make a small paste and keep doing that, it should get the stains out. Test a small area first, and wear rubber gloves to protect your skin. Zud removes rust stains from bathroom and kitchen fixtures. Sometimes you have to let it sit on the stain for a few minutes. (06/29/2007)

By Roberta

Removing Rust Stains From Fabric

Lemon juice and salt removes rust from fabric. Set it in the sun to dry. (06/29/2007)

By siris

Removing Rust Stains From Fabric

Yep, lemon juice and salt. Squeeze lots of lemon and add salt, then more lemon to make a paste. Set it out in the bright sun to dry. It should come off. I have done this MANY times, and it has always worked. (06/29/2007)

By Andjerm

Removing Rust Stains From Fabric

All of the above, or CLR. It's a product found in hardware stores and is environmentally friendly. It removes rust stains and lime or calcium deposits, ie: kettles and shower heads. I have been told that it's good for descaling old engines that have rust and other crud in the blocks etc. (06/29/2007)

By Brent nz

Removing Rust Stains From Fabric

I have had several items come out of my washer lately with what appears to be rust stains. ZUD mixed with water rubbed in has done the job so far. (07/01/2007)

By dede

Removing Rust Stains From Fabric

There is a product called Carbona. You can get the specific solution for the specific stain. I buy it at JoAnn Fabrics in the notion dept. Some grocery stores have it. It works. (07/02/2007)

By Rasta

Removing Rust Stains From Fabric

There used to be a wonderful product called Rusti-ban on the market, but I cannot find it at the present. You simply dripped a few drops of the liquid on the rust marks, and they disappeared within seconds! (10/06/2007)

By Cathy from Townsville, QLD

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November 8, 2010

How do I remove an iron pin stain from material? The pin was left in some material for a long time and it has left a brown stain on white/cream cloth. Thank you.

By Mary Meadway from London, UK

Answers:

Removing Rust Stains From Fabric

If you can find a product where you live that is called "Whink," it works like magic. Rust just disappears on contact. (06/22/2010)

By Elaine

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June 21, 2010

We have rust stains on the inside of the canvas on our tent trailer. Is there a way to remove them? Thank you.

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