How to remove rust stains from vinyl flooring

Vinyl flooring is considered as the ideal solution for some of the problematic rooms that are constantly exposed to moisture, particularly the kitchen and bathroom. Homeowners are often attracted to this type of flooring due to its resistance to stains and dampness, durability, flexibility, and low cost. 

The high chances of water spills in kitchens or bathrooms increases the chances for rust stains to develop on the flooring. Read further to learn the methods on how to remove rust stains from vinyl flooring effectively.

A close look on rust

Rust develops once the metal is subjected to prolonged exposure to water and combines with oxygen in a process known as oxidation. This process corrodes the metal, dissolving it into a chalk-like reddish-brown substance called rust. The ideal way to prevent rust is by keeping metal surfaces dry. 

Steps on how to remove rust stains from vinyl flooring

Although vinyl flooring is considered durable, the presence of rust stains must be dealt with right away to prevent permanent staining. Let us take a look at the steps at how to get rid of rust stains on vinyl flooring.

  • Clearing the area. Remove all objects in the room that can hinder your access to the rust stains. Be careful when moving any appliances to prevent scraping the flooring. A recommended precaution is to lay a plywood panel on the floor and move the appliance over it. 
  • Sprinkle baking soda over the site of the rust stains. This provides an abrasive surface to aid with the removal of the stain. In most instances, a light layer is enough. 
  • Scrub with vinegar. With a clean cloth, dip it into vinegar and scrub it on the area covered with baking soda. This will form a light paste on the floor that can penetrate the rust stains. Continue dipping the cloth into the vinegar to remove the stain. In case the stain is wide or stubborn, simply add more baking soda. Continue to reapply and scrub on the area until the stain is fully removed. 
  • Thoroughly rinse the area with water and a small amount of detergent before drying. If there are leftover traces of the stain, you can use a 5% oxalic acid solution or a commercial cleaner. When using oxalic acid, wear protective gloves, goggles, and a mask since it is a poisonous substance. 
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You can prevent the recurrence of rust stains on vinyl flooring by taking measures to avoid water spills and ensuring that when spills do occur, they are dried quickly and thoroughly. 

Taps must be switched off completely when not in use and lessen the frequency of exposure to wet shoes and coats if possible. Furthermore, switch off the water supply if not needed for some time. 


What causes yellow stains on vinyl flooring

Vinyl flooring has been the preferred choice by some homeowners due to its flexibility, resistance to stains and dampness, low cost and high durability. Nevertheless, it can end up with a yellowish discoloration that can be undesirable to look at. The yellow discoloration of vinyl flooring has a variety of causes such as the following:

  • Aging. When vinyl coating endures serious traffic and undergoes periodic cleaning, wear is inevitable over time. 
  • Hot water. When vinyl flooring is subjected to hot water, it affects it negatively. With this in mind, the floor should not be exposed to extreme conditions. 
  • Use of rubber pads. When carpets are used on vinyl flooring, its padding allows the formation of a yellowish hue after some time. 

Will vinegar and baking soda remove rust

Both vinegar and baking soda can be used to effectively eliminate rust. Let us take a look on how to use these two products in removing rust. 

  • White vinegar is ideally used on stubborn rust stains. The acetic acid in this common household product is acidic enough to dissolve the rust. Simply soak small items, wipe it onto a surface or pour directly over rust spots or objects that have rusted. Make sure to thoroughly rinse after the rust has been dissolved since leftover vinegar can damage the surface.
  • When baking soda is used, it is suitable for cleaning a variety of household stains but it also works on rust. Prepare a paste by combining baking soda with water. It should be thick enough to adhere to the rusty surface. Leave in place for a while and scrub it away with a wire brush or steel wool. This process can be repeated if needed for a few times. 
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Does ketchup remove rust

Generally, rust forms when water and oxygen react with the iron to produce hydrated iron oxide. It is important to note that acids are highly effective in getting rid of rust which is a type of iron oxide. 

The acidic component in ketchup changes iron oxide into iron acetate that can be easily washed away. This helps in eliminating the rusted layer easily. 

Final thoughts

When rust stains form on vinyl flooring, it can be undesirable to look at and can affect the overall appearance of your flooring. The techniques discussed on how to remove rust stains from vinyl flooring will help keep your floor rust-free and generally clean.

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