How to get rust off knives – 2 preferable methods (Causes & solution)

It’s likely that you have dealt with a horrible case of rust, whether you discovered a knife in one of your old toolboxes or unintentionally put your favorite non-stainless kitchen knife in the dishwasher (or your forgetful family member did it despite your repeated warnings).

P.S In truth, stainless steel blades can also rust. Old-timers sometimes believed that rust was a sign of a high-quality knife, but a rusty knife is just as hazardous, worthless, and unsightly.

Therefore, before learning about how to get rust off knives (or any other type of silverware for that matter), it is important to understand what rust is and how, if at all, it affects food hygiene.

Table of contents

  • What is rust?
  • Rusting is referred to as corrosion by how stuff works
  • Causes of rust
  • How to keep safe your knives from rust in the first place
  • How to remove rust
  • Method 1- Baking soda
  • Method 2- Vinegar bath
  • Conclusion 

What is Rust?

Wait! I know you are in a rush to know how to get rust off knives. But do you know what rust is? and is rust on knives dangerous? When a metal is in touch with water for an extended period of time, rust develops because iron oxidizes. In fact, our bodies require iron, thus it is not harmful to our health.

The next two parts can be skipped if all you’re interested in is rust removal techniques, but it’s important to understand why your blade is rusting in the first place. 

With regard to keeping your kitchen knives in tip-top shape, we’ve published a ton of articles, provided a ton of advice, assisted you in choosing the finest and safest storage options based on your needs and tastes, and guided you through how to determine whether a knife is still sharp. 

Let’s now discuss what rust actually is. The term “rust” refers to the reddish-orange flaky iron oxide substance that you may have noticed on certain metals. The item need not even be specifically “in” water; it only has to have water in the air that settles on it and interacts with the metal.

Rusting is referred to as corrosion by How Stuff Works

How to get rust off knives is a million-dollar question to ask. But what is the need of this question to ask so frequently, the answer is corrosion.

Corrosion is an electrochemical process that involves an anode (a metal object that readily gives up electrons), an electrolyte (a substance that facilitates the movement of electrons), and a cathode (a piece of metal that readily accepts electrons). 

The electrolyte aids in supplying the anode with oxygen when a piece of metal corrodes. Electrons are released as the metal and oxygen mix. The metal of the anode is swept away by the electrical flow or transformed into metal cations in a form like rust as they move through the electrolyte to the cathode.

Causes of Rust

Before moving toward how to get rust off knives. You need to have a little background of its main cause. Numerous products you commonly use around the house, in the backyard, and on the patio are made up of ferrous metals, such carbon steel, cast iron and wrought iron. Nails, knives, skillets, fireplace tools, yard and garden tools, are just a few examples of common metal objects that contain iron.

  • Corrosion happens when these everyday items are ignored
  • Improperly cleaned, or dried, and your prized possessions end up covered in reddish-brown rust. The reason for this is that ferrous metals don’t combine with water, oxygen, or acidic chemicals.
  • Rust is persistent, and when it is ignored, additional rust develops, making rust removal a task that may need several hours and a lot of labor.
  • Another reason could be rust on knives from dishwasher

How to keep safe your knives from rust in the first place

Rust can be a problem for knives, making them unsafe to use, dulling the blade, and even damaging handles or blades if left untreated. Knowing how to get rust off knives before it becomes a bigger issue is essential for all at-home chefs. One of the best ways to keep your knives from rusting in the first place is by taking steps to prevent corrosion from occurring.

  • Avoid water, which is the main cause of the corrosion, to preserve your metal objects from rusting.
  • Dry your equipment, which implies that you must dry your gardening equipment after maintaining the vegetable beds and clean the putty knife after sealing any gutter leaks.
  • Avoid silverware sitting too long in the sink, Avoid letting the silverware sit in the sink or running the dishwasher with it. You won’t have to deal with rust anytime soon if you keep metal items in a dry, low-humidity area, including your home repair tools. 
  • Protective coating, applying a protective coating is another way to stop rust from growing on metal surfaces. Use a soft cloth to apply a little amount of mineral oil two to three times a year to items like pocket knives. To slow and avoid rust stains, tools, and lawn equipment can be coated with substances like paste wax or WD-40. 

Here are seven tried-and-true removal procedure hacks on how to get rust off knives if you chance to have a metal object with a little—or a lot—of rust.

How to remove rust 

Let’s now actually dive into how to get rust off knives. Each of the following “home” techniques can be applied separately or repeatedly for blades that are especially rusted. To ensure a sharp and secure blade after using any method, we still advise purchasing and sharpening the blade or how often sharpen knives with a natural or synthetic sharpening stone. There are some methods of how to get rust off knives.

Method No 1 – How to remove rust from knives with Baking soda

You’ll require the following supplies before dwelling into how to get rust off knives

  • Water Baking soda
  • Steel wool (or sponge)
  • Toothbrush 
  • a fabric

 Wash your knife

The blade of your knife needs to be completely cleaned first since dirt might prevent rust from being removed. Because water is what mostly causes your knife to rust, try to stay away from it. As an alternative, clean it with a cleaning agent and a cloth.

Prepare a paste of baking soda rust removal

We’ll start baking now. I’m joking. Make a thin paste of baking soda. If you’re feeling inventive, add some water or lemon juice to a bowl with a decent bit of baking soda. It should be stirred until it becomes a paste.

Use a toothbrush to scrub 

If the rust isn’t too bad or well-established, you can just use the toothbrush to scrub in order to get rust off knives.

Use steel wool or a sponge that is semi-abrasive.

A bit more abrasion will be necessary to help remove the rust from blades that are much rusted. Steel wool is frequently advised, in the absence of sharpening stone with a lower grit (600–1000), but if you brush too vigorously, it could ruin your blade. 

A slightly abrasive sponge is an additional option. Avoid scrubbing too vigorously to avoid damaging the finish or damaging the blade. You wouldn’t want to take it away, would you?

Cleanse the blade

Finally, wipe the blade down with a towel to get rid of the extra baking powder you can get rust off knives with lemon juice. If you truly want to take good care of your blade, you may lubricate it and shield it against rust in the future by using some mineral oil afterward.

There is still a question to ask, how to get rust off knives if we don’t have the supplies mentioned above? Don’t worry we got you covered by suggesting you a second method to get rust off knife blades.

Method 2 – vinegar bath

Causes and how to get rust off knives – 2 preferable methods , method of removing rust off knives with vinegar

You’ll require the following supplies before dwelling into how to get rust off knives.

  • a cup or a pan
  • Clear Vinegar (apple vinegar will do also)
  • the sponge
  • a fabric

Fill a cup or pan with vinegar

Use just white vinegar since it includes acetic acid, which will dissolve the rust. Other vinegar could cause stains. This can be helpful to remove brown spots on knives.

Put the rusted knife in the water

You can also bathe a paper towel in vinegar and encircle the blade if you do not wish to dampen its entirety (or knife). Keep it there for no longer than five minutes

Clean the blade

After it has finished soaking, you should clean the blade. 

How to get rust off knives and keep it safe

This is how you should take care of and maintain the blade of your knife to prevent rust spots on your beloved blades. If you do this then you don’t even ask how to get rust off knives.

  • After washing, keep knives clean and completely dry them.
  • Knives should be kept in a dry location with minimal humidity.
  • By coating a thin layer of mineral oil on the knife twice a year, you can protect against rust stains on the blades.

Also check our Guide on

How to sharpen kitchen knives – Sharpening Knives

What knives does Gordon Ramsay use – Topline knives


In this above section, we have discussed all the methods and techniques of how to get rust off knives.

If you want to save your knives from rust then clean them every day. So then you don’t have to roam around the internet in search of how to get the rust off knives!


How do you get rust off of stainless steel knives?

To get rid of rust from knives you can use baking soda. You may try using a mixture of water and baking soda and apply it to the rust. Leave it for a few minutes, then rinse it off and dry the knife thoroughly. White vinegar may also be used, and the knife should be soaked for approximately an hour. Next to this, use a soft-bristled brush to clean the rust and then give it a water rinse.

How to get rust off knives and forks?

Use the techniques that are mentioned above to remove rust from knives and forks, or try using a rust remover made especially for kitchen equipment.

Why are my knives rusting?

Knives may rust because of various causes such as moisture, excessive humidity, and interaction to acidic or salty chemicals. Another factor that might lead to the development of rust is improper storage and infrequent usage.

Does vinegar remove rust?

Yes, vinegar is an effective rust remover. Vinegar in acetic acid reacts with the rust to remove it, making it easier to remove. Simply soak the affected item in vinegar for a few hours or overnight, then scrub the rust away with a brush and rinse with water.

Does lemon remove rust from knives?

Yes, you can use lemon to remove rust off blades. Lemon juice’s citric acid helps dissolve rust, making cleanup simpler. Squeeze lemon juice over the affected area and allow it to rest for ten to fifteen minutes to apply this strategy. After that, wash the knife with water after using a soft-bristled brush or steel wool to scrub the rust. However, this technique works best on little rust patches and may not work well on bigger or more extensively rusted regions.

How to remove brown spots on knives?

If your knife has minimal rust, soak it for 15 to 30 minutes in a glass of vinegar; if the rust is more serious, soak it overnight.

shahzoon naz

shahzoon naz

Shahzoon Naz is a freelance Content Writer. He spends most of his time in the kitchen, you will see him in the kitchen and every time cooking something new and tasty.

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