Tools that have been exposed to humidity or moisture, left out in the rain, put away dirty, or otherwise not treated with the respect they deserve will eventually develop a layer of rust. In time, this will eat away at the tool and the tool will lose its effectiveness and safety.

Once formed, rust can be difficult to remove – but it’s not impossible. It’s crucial that you remove rust from your tools before it ruins them altogether.

There are a number of ways to remove rust from your rusty tools. These include:

  • Vinegar and Baking Soda: soak rusted tools in white vinegar for three hours. After three hours, scrub them with an old toothbrush. After scrubbing, soak the cleaned tools in a solution of two parts water to one part baking soda. Leave them for five minutes in this solution. Rinse in clean water and dry immediately with paper towels and use a hairdryer for small or tight spaces. To prevent further rust development, apply a thin coat of coconut oil to the tools.
  • Lemon Juice and Salt: Make a thick paste with 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice and regular salt. Dab it onto the rusted area on the tool and rub it with a dry cloth. The mixture should penetrate the surface rust so that it rubs off.
  • Molasses: Submerge steel tools in one part molasses to nine parts water in a bucket for two to three days for surface rust or for up to three weeks for thick rust. Remove the tool every few days to wipe it down and remove loosened rust before re-submerging it.
  • Naval Jelly: Naval Jelly is a product specifically formulated to remove rust. Brushed onto the rusted surface, it dissolves the rust. The tool should rinse clean.
  • Simple Scrubbing: Some rust will be able to be removed with simple scrubbing – hard work but effective. Try steel wool with WD-40, sandpaper, or wire brushes.


There comes a time when old rusty tools simply need to be replaced. If you’re in the market for lineman pliers, electrician scissors, cable sleeve stripping knives or screw removal pliers, look no further than Vampire Tools for the very best tools available on the market.