Restoration Tips from Our Orange County Iron Works Experts
Restoring wrought iron is essential if you have them installed in your home. As time goes on, iron furniture or fixtures can start to fade and look dull but you can easily restore to look new again.
Wrought iron has a carbon-free feature, making it resistant to corrosion. In addition, its malleability comes from its fibrous structure.
Custom fabricated iron staircase, railing or gate brings charm and wonders to your home. Restoration protects and saves them from further damage due to rust. And to help you with your iron restoration project, our Orange County ironworks experts came up with some tips.
The Rust Needs to Go
Rust is the number one risk when it comes to wrought iron because of their exposure to harsh elements, especially outside your home.
However, rusting of wrought irons cannot be 100% prevented due to oxidation. When iron is exposed to air or moisture, oxidation converts it into iron oxide, and both are catalysts for rusting.
There are ways to protect wrought irons from rusting and that is by restoration. Below are some ways on how to do this.
The first thing you should do when restoring your iron furniture or fixtures is to clean them thoroughly.
This will let you remove a lot of grime and dirt build-up that make the iron look dull and faded. You can use warm soapy water as a starter.
It is crucial to use warm water when cleaning your wrought iron. It is said that the fast-moving molecules of hot water help in enhancing the cleaning solution.
Make sure that you get in all the grooves and crevices to remove all the dirt you can’t see. You should ensure to rinse it thoroughly to remove all the soap and cleaning product residues.
You will need to sand down your wrought iron to remove any rust or peeling paint. The older it is, the more you need to sand.
You can start sanding using large grit sandpaper. Then move your way with small grit as you go. Sanding is a crucial part of restoration because you want to give the wrought iron a smooth finish.
Using the sandpaper removes flaking paint, rust spots, dirt that didn’t come off when washing, and more.
This can take some time, however, it’s important to make sure you sand down the entire surface you are planning to restore.
Use a Rust Remover
It might not be easy or even possible to remove all the rust just by using sandpaper, especially if the wrought iron has rusted deeply or rust has been sitting on its surface for a long time.
You will need to use more than just soap, water. and sandpaper to get the job done. Applying a rust remover solution to the metal helps dissolve the rust.
You can purchase a reliable rust remover online or in many hardware stores. However, make sure to follow the directions on the packaging and prepare the surface properly.
Chemical rust removers or the commercialized ones that can be purchased from the store shelves are made from tannic acid and an organic polymer.
Tannic acid converts the red-colored iron oxide into a bluish to black ferric tannate. While the organic polymer acts as a protective primer for your wrought iron.
It is crucial that you wear protective gear for your skin like a glove because these products can cause irritation. Also, you must avoid breathing in or swallowing in these products as it can lead to anti-rust poisoning.
You will also want to protect other surfaces on top of the wrought iron you’re working on using plastic or rubber covers. Other materials can be damaged from the chemical composition of rust removers.
Utilize a Wire Brush
Once the rust remover has been applied, you can utilize a wire brush to loosen the rust up. A wire brush is strong enough to remove the rust from the iron but also gentle on the surface.
Using a wire brush with an excellent quality won’t damage your wrought iron. You can also use different brush sizes to get into all the small and large spaces.
Once you’ve done all the procedures above, you have to ensure your wrought iron surface is completely dry.
If the surface isn’t dry the paint and primer to be applied will not seal the iron. You can pat the surface dry with a soft towel or a paper towel.
You can also just let it air dry. However, this could take a few minutes or a few days depending on the size of the iron and the amount of rust remover you applied.
If the area is saturated, it will take longer to dry than if you just slightly dampened it for cleaning.
Use a Rust Resistant Primer
Once the surface is completely dry you can start adding a rust-resistant primer. This will help smooth out the surface of the iron and prepare it for painting.
The primer will also act as protection against rust so you can count on your wrought iron looking great for many years.
If you do need to restore it in the future, the primer can help make that restoration faster and easier. It will also extend the life of the iron by preventing the rust from forming and breaking it down.
Allow the primer to dry between coats and apply as many coats as needed.
Seal it Using a Rust Resistant Paint
Once the rust-resistant primer is dry, you can start applying the rust-resistant paint. This will not only give the iron or metal a new and clean look, but it will also help prevent rusting of the surface over time.
You can either repaint the entire surface or find a paint that matches the previous color of the iron to blend well with it, that way you can save on time and money.
Matching paint colors can be done at hardware stores or purchase online with the same paint color your wrought iron were painted on. You will want to use a soft brush to apply each coat of paint and allow plenty of time between coats for drying.
Once the paint is completely dry, you can use a soft cloth to remove any dust or dirt that may have attached to it to give it a final finishing touch.
Choose the Right Ironworks in Orange County, CA
If you are planning on restoring your wrought iron staircase, railings, or gates in Orange County, you need to make sure you are prepared for the task.
Iron looks great on your home and with the right technique, you can restore it to its original glory. It is crucial that you consider the above steps during restoration.
We have a large selection of wrought iron products and we’re happy to help you choose the right one.
If you need help from a team of experts in the installation of iron staircase, railing, gate, or door in your home, contact our team at Naddour’s Custom Metalworks today!