If you have chosen to utilize wrought iron pieces outdoors, you may come to realize that after some exposure to the elements, a little bit of upkeep may be necessary. While wrought iron furniture, gates, and fences are all fairly easy to maintain, there are some steps that should be taken in order to keep it looking as best as it can. For many homeowners, the biggest concern with wrought iron elements is the susceptibility to rust. Luckily, by taking some proactive steps, you can quickly address and rust spots that come up, and prevent future ones from occurring. 

Handling Rust

The best way to handle rust is to prevent it, but if your wrought iron is already being wrought with rust, you will have to address that first before you can figure out what to do to prevent it from happening again. 

Start With Cleaning

In order to clean off the rust that is on your wrought iron, you will need a stiff brush or steel wool. Use this to scrub the rusted spots vigorously until you can no longer see any evidence of rust. If you had previously painted or put a finishing product on your wrought iron piece, or it had come standard that way, you will then need to sand around the rusted area to remove any remaining parts of this previous finish. A medium-grit sandpaper will accomplish the desired result. 

The next step is to clean and prep the affected area with a solvent, which will eliminate any remaining dirt, dust, and grime. If you are planning on refinishing your entire piece so that it can have a cohesive appearance, you will need to complete this step for the whole surface, being careful to remove any chipped paint or blemishes that you come across. Once cleaned, allow ample time for the piece to dry before continuing on. 

Apply Paints and Finishes

After the piece has completely and thoroughly dried, it’s time to apply a primer. When choosing the best primer for your project, it’s crucial to consider if the piece is outdoors or indoors, and what kind of elements it will be subjected to. A rust-proof primer may be a good option for wrought iron. When the primer has been applied and dried, it is best to sand the surface lightly to prepare it for being painted. Similarly to picking a primer, when it comes time to decide on a paint, one that is made for exterior or outdoor use will most likely be the best choice for preventing rust. Now that your color has been applied, protect all the layers with a sealant. Not only is this an extra level of rust-proofing, it also helps to prevent any fading that may occur due to exposure to the sun. 

Preventing Rust

Now that we have gone over how to handle rust when it does occur, there are some additional steps that you can take to prevent it from happening again. After you have invested the time and money it takes to refinish and weatherproof your wrought iron pieces, you want to make sure that they stay in the best condition possible. 

On a regular basis, use a gentle soap in some warm water, and a scrubbing brush to clean the surface of your wrought iron furniture, gate, or fence. Ensure that after you have washed it, it dries completely. If you notice any spots where the paint or finish has chipped off or scratched, touch those areas up right away. Clearing off standing water, dust and dirt, and other debris on a regular basis will also help in the prevention of rust. 

If you are interested in utilizing wrought iron for your property, are curious about the restoration or care of such, or have questions of any other kind, feel free to reach out to our wrought iron specialists