Of the many forms of dirt you have to deal with when cleaning your ceramic or porcelain tiles, rust is one stubborn stain of a kind. It’s possible to invest much time and elbow grease into getting rid of rust from tiles and still end up not getting the results you wanted.
However, that doesn’t mean getting rid of the rust off your beautiful tiles is mission-impossible. You still can. But that will more require you to work smart than hard. So, how can you remove rust from your ceramic and porcelain tiles after it develops?
Well, that’s what we have for you today. In this article, we will be guiding you on how to restore the day one glow of your tiles from rust. But before we get there, let’s take a quick at a few things.
Why Do Tiles Get Stained By Rust?
To begin with, tiles getting stained by rust is a common occurrence. It’s a problem I have dealt with previously and can confirm it has nothing to do with not cleaning your house often. This type of stain can develop on ceramic and porcelain tiles faster and easier than you’d think is possible.
“So, why would it be so?” You could be wondering. After all, our days back in school taught us only metals can rust, and in fact, not all. So, how again could we be talking about rust on ceramic and porcelain tiles? Well, let’s find out.
Before I proceed any further, let me clear something up. Your teacher was right. Unlike some metals, ceramic and porcelain don’t rust. However, they can catch the stain after coming into contact with a rusty object.
In other words, the rust you see on your tiles should tell you that you have some other rusty stuff in your space. It’s up to you to find out what it is to avoid the recurrent occurrence of rust on your tiles.
And with that said, how can you identify the source of rust? It’s more often easy – after you discover rust, first look at the things touching the floor. Be sure to check out any iron tools or iron furniture legs.
So, why only iron? You see, rust is a form of iron oxide (Fe2O3). In fact, that’s its chemical name, meaning that it comes about when iron and oxygen come in contact with each other. Moisture also plays a part, but majorly as a catalyst.
And just so you know, when I talk of iron, I don’t only mean things made of pure iron. I also have in view its alloys, including steel. If it’s not on iron or its alloy, it ceases to be rust. That now becomes corrosion.
So yes, look for anything on the floor that could be of iron or its alloys. When you notice any, lift it from the floor. As for the furniture legs, you can think of placing something between the legs and the floor after you clean.
Sometimes it may be difficult to trace the cause of the rust. That’s especially true when it’s coming from rusty screws, nails, pipes, and other objects beneath the tiling floor. But keen enough, you should trace it.
If you have none of these metal fittings beneath your flooring but still notice rust, then you have one remaining possible source of rust. It’s one thing you least expect – tap water! Yes, tap water sometimes contains traces of iron.
What are the Most Common Type of Stains?
While rust is a common stain among porcelain, ceramic, and other floor types, it isn’t the only type of stain you will come across. But fortunately, whatever invades your floor, most of these common stains are easy to remove.
Coffee: If you drink coffee often, coffee stains on your tiled floor are likely. Fortunately, this type of stain is easy to remove. Just dip a clean piece of cloth in a mixture of water and baking soda and rub the place – and that’s it!
Juice/Tea: The next type of stains also comes from drinks. Much like coffee, these stains are easy to remove. However, in this case, use warm water and mild detergent. For any remaining shadowing, use diluted bleach or a little hydrogen peroxide.
Blood: If you happen to cut or injure yourself and end up shedding some stains of blood on your tiled floor, you can get rid of it. Just dampen a piece of cloth with hydrogen peroxide or diluted bleach and rub over the stain.
Ink/Dye: They can be problematic on clothing and flooring. But with the know-how, you can eliminate them from your floor with minimal elbow grease. Just get a soft cloth and immerse it in diluted bleach. Then, spread the wet piece on the stain and leave it to sit for a while before rinsing.
Nail Polish: Common among households with females, this stain is easy to remove. Yes, you probably guessed it right – you need the very thing for removing it from nails. Acetone, popularly known as nail polish remover, will do the job. Just apply it over the stain and rub.
Paint: It’s a common enemy for your flooring during DIY painting projects. When wet, removal can be as easy as rubbing the stain with a damp cloth. But after it dries out, it becomes a bit difficult to eliminate. Now, for dry paint, use acetone with the same procedure for removing nail polish from the floor. Window cleaners, degreaser, and vinegar could also do.
Grease: It won’t come out with water. However, a degreaser should do. If you don’t have one, you can also think of rubbing the place with a hard-bristled brush using household detergent. Alternatively, you can think of a trisodium phosphate solution. Only ensure that you use hot water in preparing the solution.
Various Ways To Remove Rust Stains From Ceramic and Porcelain Tiles
Having looked at the common types of stains and how to get rid of them, let’s get back to our pending question – how can you remove rust stains from your flooring?
Well, here’s how;
1. Use Lemon
Lemon has multiple uses ranging from weight management to cleaning glass to refreshing chopping boards, and that’s not all yet. And yes, the next time you notice ugly rust stains on your floor, lemon can also suffice.
The citric acid in this fruit will go a long way to help rid your tiles of rust and other types of stains.
- Cut lemon and squeeze the juice into a bowl
- Add salt to the solution and mix.
- Apply the resulting product over the affected area
- Allow it to sit for 10 minutes.
- Clean it down with a sponge. You can also use a clean soft-bristled brush to scrub the area.
2. Apply Toothpaste
Using toothpaste will also help remove rust from your tiles. The process is pretty straightforward. But before we share the procedure, it’s important to point out that not every toothpaste is ideal here.
If rust has to come out with minimal effort, use one containing baking soda. This kind will do the job right.
- Cover the stained area with a thin layer of toothpaste.
- In circular motions, scrub the place using an old toothbrush any other soft-bristled brush.
3. Rub Tomatoes
Perhaps you’ve never thought of using tomatoes on any other task outside the culinary world. But believe me – this staple kitchen ingredient is one way to revive the beauty of your ceramic and porcelain tiles after they catch rust. And as with lemon, you don’t need to be an expert for things to work out for you.
- Spread salt over the place.
- Cut a ripe tomato into two halves – preferably a cross-sectional cut.
- Rub one half on the place in circular motions squeezing it hard enough to release some juice on the rust.
- Leave it for about 7 minutes before
- Clean the place with a soft cloth.
4. Make Use of Vinegar
You might have used vinegar for several home cleaning chores. Now, if you are wondering whether you can use it for removing rust, then you can. In fact, this common household chemical works just as well for removing rust as for other types of stains.
The acidic nature of this household product makes it an appropriate candidate for the task.
- Spray vinegar on the stains.
- Leave it for about 3 minutes.
- Rinse with warm water.
5. Use Kerosene
While it could be the last option you want to use, kerosene is one of the most effective products for removing rust from ceramic and porcelain tiles. In fact, this method is more effective on the job than vinegar and several other methods discussed earlier.
- Cover the place with kerosene
- Allow it to sit for about 10 minutes.
- Wipe with cotton clothing
- Wait for 5 minutes
- Rinse with water.
How To Remove Rust Stains From Marble Tiles?
As seen, it’s easy to get rid of rust from ceramic and porcelain tiles when you have the right products. But does the same apply to marble tiles?
Well, not at all. Unlike ceramic and porcelain tiles, marble is more sensitive to harsh chemicals. In fact, you should never use any acidic substance on marble tiles as it may damage them.
Now, to get rid of rust from your marble tiles, there are two ways to go about it;
Option 1: Using Baking Soda and Water
- Prepare a paste of baking soda and water.
- Spread on the affected area.
- Cover the place with a wrap and leave for up to 48 hours.
- Remove the wrap and scrub the dried substance using a plastic scraping tool.
Option 2: Rust Remover and Distilled Water
- Make a paste using rust remover and distilled water
- Apply the mixture to the affected area
- Wait for up to 24 hours
- Scrape the dry substance off using a gentle scrubber.
How To Prevent Rust Stains on Tiles?
While rust is removable, it’s going to take a little of your time and effort. As such, we recommend that you focus more on prevention other than removal. Here are a few things to do to keep rust from your tiles.
- Keep iron objects off the floor
- Avoid using nails, screws, and metal fittings on your tiled floor
- Always keep wet shoes from the tiled floor
- Use sealer for marble tiles after every few months
While tiles can’t develop rust per se, they can get it from other rusty objects. The rust can be easy or troublesome to remove depending on the cause. Either way, how you eliminate rust from ceramic and porcelain tiles isn’t the same with other sensitive tile types such as marble. But if you can, we recommend that you adopt measures to prevent rust from happening in the first place.