How To Clean And Maintain Cast Iron Furniture

When it comes to outdoor furniture, we all are biased towards metal furniture; because it is sleek, elegant, and durable against the elements. But there are many types and variations in metal furniture, which to an untrained eye might seem the same. Many people don’t know the difference between wrought iron, cast iron, and other metal furniture. Although they all share some fundamental elements,  metals are very different from each other. Among these, cast iron is the oldest known method used for furniture construction.  It has a vintage, elegant look that can render your outdoor space with a historic aura.

In this article, we will explain how you can keep up regular maintenance of cast iron furniture.

Cast Iron and Wrought Iron Furniture, Differences?

Although cast iron and wrought can be interchangeably used, they are fundamentally different in their making. Cast iron is made by pouring melted iron into a cast or mold. Wrought iron is produced by heating iron and then hammering it into different shapes, making it stronger than cast iron. Both cast iron and wrought iron furniture are durable outdoor furniture.

How to Clean Cast Iron Furniture

One of the significant drawbacks of cast iron furniture is that it is prone to rust and erosion, meaning you need regular cleaning and maintenance. Cleaning and maintenance of cast iron furniture involve cleaning rust and chipped paint and repainting. Here we have explained the cleaning and maintenance process for your cast iron furniture.

Supplies That You Need For Cleaning Cast Iron Furniture

You need standard supplies like warm water, bucket, liquid washing chemical or regular dish soap, sponge, small brush to clean cast iron furniture. Sandpaper or paint scraper will come in handy if you want to remove the paint from the furniture. You might also need a pressure washer to remove rust and dirt from the intricate patterns of your furniture. 

If you don’t have any pressure washers, check out top electric pressure washers on the web and find yourself one. You might find these pressure washers handy for many other uses, such as washing your car or the exterior of your house.

Routine Cleaning

Regular cleaning of cast iron furniture is no different than cleaning other furniture. You should clean your outdoor furniture at least twice a week to get rid of dust, more if it is used frequently. Using a brush vacuum will get rid of any loose dirt or paint. You can use a wet cleaning rag soaked in dish soap to wipe every surface of the furniture and let it dry. To reach the intricate detail or pattern, use a scrubbing brush.

Cleaning Old Furniture for Repainting

If you have cast iron furniture that was in your storage for a long time, you might need to clean and repaint them before putting them out on the patio. For renewing cast iron furniture, you need a wire brush, sandpaper, sponge, water, and paint.

Use Wire Brush to Remove Chipped Paint

A wire brush can help you remove all the peeling paint from the iron surface. Although it is a tedious job, make sure you get all the loose paint removed. As you use the wire brush, some of the rust might also come loose; don’t focus on getting the rust as we will deal with it in the next step. Don’t forget to wear protective eyewear to protect your eye from floating paint dust.

Remove the Rust With SandPaper

Use sandpaper to clean off the rust, as you would to remove paint from a wall. Start with rough sandpaper and continue until you get all the brown spots covered. Finish the sanding process by smoothing out the surface with softer sandpaper. This process is faster if you use a sander to get rid of the rust.

Clean or Wash the Furniture

After you have removed the paint and rust, it is time to prepare the surface for repainting. Like any other paint job, first, you need to wash the surface with water and a sponge. Thoroughly clean the surface to increase the durability of the painting. After cleaning, wipe it down with a soft rag so that it can dry off quickly.

Repaint It

You should repaint the furniture right after you have cleaned it. Otherwise, more rust will form if you leave it exposed to the elements for too long. Choose a paint that is appropriate for metal, preferably enamel paint. Use a rust-proof primer before coating it with paint; use several paint coats to get a smooth finish. You can use spray paint if you have minute detailing and cervices in your furniture that are tough to paint with a brush.

Let the Paint Dry

You should dry the paint for at least five hours. To check if it is dry, touch it with a finger and check if the finger comes as clean. You can also use some automotive wax polish to keep up the shine of the furniture. Wax polish can also prevent dust and corrosion.

Maintenance Checks

You should regularly check your furniture for rust, peeling off paint, and cracks. Rust and paint can be dealt with by repainting. However, if you find any cracks in your cast iron furniture, you should call a welder to fix it; before it completely breaks down. Rust can also damage the whole piece of furniture if it remains untreated.

On a final note, regular cleaning of your cast iron furniture is necessary for their longevity and appearance. Regular checks can also prevent rust, peeling paint, and cracks. The maintenance and cleaning of cast iron furniture don’t require much expense.  You can clean the furniture with mild detergents and supplies around the house. With the cleaning and maintenance tips mentioned above, you can easily revamp your patio look and enjoy the elegance that cast iron furniture brings to your home.

Author: Brandon Park