Skip to main content

Historic Preservation - Technical Procedures

Spectitle:

Methods Of Removing Rust Stains From Ceramic Tile

Procedure code:

0931001R

Source:

Internet - North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service

Division:

Finishes

Section:

Ceramic Tile

Last Modified:

02/24/2012

Details:

Methods Of Removing Rust Stains From Ceramic Tile



METHODS OF REMOVING RUST STAINS FROM CERAMIC TILE


PART 1---GENERAL

1.01 SUMMARY

    A.   This procedure includes guidance on removing rust stains
         from ceramic tile.  Rust stains may be caused by water
         deposits containing large amounts of iron.

    B.   For additional information on the preservation,
         maintenance, repair and replacement of ceramic tiles, see
         09310-02-S.

    C.   See 01100-07-S for general project guidelines to be
         reviewed along with this procedure.  These guidelines
         cover the following sections:

         1.   Safety Precautions

         2.   Historic Structures Precautions

         3.   Submittals

         4.   Quality Assurance

         5.   Delivery, Storage and Handling

         6.   Project/Site Conditions

         7.   Sequencing and Scheduling

         8.   General Protection (Surface and Surrounding)

         These guidelines should be reviewed prior to performing
         this procedure and should be followed, when applicable,
         along with recommendations from the Regional Historic
         Preservation Officer (RHPO).


PART 2---PRODUCTS

2.01 MATERIALS

    A.   Clean, potable water

    B.   Clean, soft cotton cloths or cotton pads

    C.   Additional Materials Specifically for Fresh Stains:

         1.   Granular Cleaner:  A heavy duty cleaning compound
              containing trisodium phosphate (TSP) such as "Spic-
              n-Span", or approved equal.

    B.   Additional Materials Specifically for Heavy Stains:

         1.   Oxalic Acid Stain Remover Compound such as "Zud",
              (available at grocery stores), or approved equal.

         -OR-

         2.   Trichloro-Melanine Compound

    C.   Additional Materials Specifically for Set Stains:

         1.   Oxalic Acid Crystals

         -OR-

              Naval Jelly:  Available in paint stores.

         2.   Whiting or talcum powder

         3.   Plastic sheeting

    D.   Additional Materials Specifically for Persistent Stains:

         1.   Borax

         2.   Lemon Juice

         3.   Other Rust Removers: "Whisk-Away", "Pumie Scouring
              Stick".  Follow label instructions.

2.03 EQUIPMENT

    A.   Soft paint brush

    B.   Glass or ceramic containers for mixing any
         poultices/solutions

    C.   Wooden utensil for stirring the ingredients

    D.   Wood or plastic spatula

    E.   Masking tape


PART 3---EXECUTION

3.01 ERECTION, INSTALLATION, APPLICATION

    NOTE:  CLEAN USING THE GENTLEST MEANS POSSIBLE.

    A.   For Fresh Stains:

         1.   Apply the granular cleaner with a damp cloth or pad
              and rub vigorously until the stain is removed.  

         2.   Rinse thoroughly with clean, clear water and wipe
              dry with a clean, soft cloth.

    B.   For Heavy Stains:

         1.   Apply an oxalic acid stain remover compound or a
              trichloro-melanine compound to the dampened area.
              Scrub with a soft damp cloth.

         2.   Repeat the process as necessary to remove the
              stain.

         3.   Rinse thoroughly with clean, clear water.

    C.   Set Stains:

         1.   Create a poultice by dissolving oxalic acid
              crystals in hot water; add enough whiting or talcum
              powder to make a soft paste.

         3.   Using a wood spatula, apply the poultice to the
              stained area and allow to dry.

         4.   Rinse thoroughly with clean, clear water and dry
              with a soft cloth.

         -OR-

         1.   Apply a small amount of naval jelly with a soft             paint brush or cloth.

         2.   Allow naval jelly to remain on the surface for at
              least 30-60 minutes, or longer if necessary until
              the stain disappears.

         3.   Rinse the surface with clean, clear water and allow
              to dry.

              -OR-

         4.   Try using a commercial rust remover.  Follow
              manufacturer's instructions.

    D.   For Persistent Stains:

         1.   Mix a combination of borax and lemon juice together
              into a paste.

         2.   Cover the stain with the paste and allow to dry.

         3.   Rinse the area with clear water and dry with a
              clean, soft cloth.

         4.   Repeat the process if necessary.

         -OR-

         5.   Try using a commercial pumice bar:

              a.   Rub the stain with the bar to remove as much
                   of the stain as possible.

              b.   Rinse thoroughly with clean, clear water and
                   dry with a clean, soft cloth.

                         END OF SECTION