How to Clean an Iron

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Over time, water, starch, and other products can leave the surface of your iron with built-up gunk and mineral deposits. This can transfer to your clothing when using the iron. Cleaning your iron occasionally can help to remove any materials on your iron, allowing you to iron your clothing without worrying about transferring dirt to your items of clothing and other fabrics.

How to clean an iron with vinegar and salt

Materials Needed
  • Clean cloth
  • Plastic container (2)
  • Pot (for boiling the water)
  • Rubber gloves
  • Salt
  • Soft brush
  • White vinegar
Salt and vinegar mixed in water represents a great solution to use when cleaning an iron. The following section outlines the steps for cleaning an iron using a vinegar and salt solution.
Step 1: Mix the vinegar and salt. Begin the process by mixing two parts vinegar and one part salt in a pot.
Heat the mixture over medium heat until the salt is fully dissolved. Do not let the vinegar come to a boil.
Before using, allow the mixture to cool slightly.
Step 2: Clean the iron. Pour the solution into a plastic container.
Saturate a clean cloth in the solution, squeeze it out, and wipe down the surface of the iron.
If needed, use a soft brush to get rid of tougher stains on the iron’s surface. Make sure not to use a brush on a Teflon-coated iron.
Step 3: Rinse the iron. After cleaning the iron using the vinegar and salt solution, rinse the surface with white vinegar.
You can do this by dipping a clean cloth into a bowl of white vinegar, squeezing it out, and running it over the surface of the iron.

How to clean an iron with toothpaste

Materials Needed
  • Clean cloth
  • Old, clean cloth
  • Small bowl
  • Water
  • White toothpaste
Another option for cleaning the surface of an iron is to use white toothpaste. The following talks about the process for cleaning an iron with toothpaste.
Step 1: Apply the toothpaste. Start by rubbing white toothpaste onto the stained area on the surface of the iron.
Allow the toothpaste to sit for a few minutes.
Step 2: Wipe off the toothpaste. Wet a cloth in a bowl of clean water, squeeze it out, and wipe the toothpaste off of the surface of the iron.
Step 3: Fill the reservoir with water. Next, fill the water reservoir of the iron.
Turn the iron to high and turn on the steam setting.
Step 4: Wipe the iron on an old, clean cloth. Iron an old, clean cloth for a few minutes to remove any additional buildup.
Step 5: Allow the iron to cool. Set the iron flat on a protected surface, and allow it to cool completely before putting it away.
Make sure to empty out any water left in the reservoir.

How to clean an iron using baking soda

Materials Needed
  • Baking soda (2 tablespoons)
  • Clean cloths
  • Cotton swabs
  • Distilled or filtered water
  • Old, clean cloth
  • Small bowl (2)
  • Water (1 tablespoon)
Baking soda and water represents another mixture that can help remove mineral deposits and other gunk from the surface of your iron. The section below goes into more detail about the iron-cleaning process using baking soda and water.
Step 1: Create a baking soda and water mixture. First, mix the baking soda and water in a small bowl to create a paste.
The paste should be a little runny, but solid enough to stick to the iron’s metal heating surface.
Step 2: Spread the paste. Using your fingers, apply the paste to the surface of the iron in the areas where it is dirty.
Alternatively, you can use a spatula to spread the paste on the iron, especially if you have a lot of built-up gunk.
Step 3: Rinse the iron off. Fill a small bowl with distilled water, saturate a clean cloth, squeeze it out, and wipe the paste off the surface of the iron.
Step 4: Clean the steam holes. Next, dip a cotton swab into the distilled water and use it to clean out the steam holes in the surface of the iron.
Make sure to clean out each hole. Switch to a new swab if you notice a lot of build-up on the swab.
Step 5: Clean the reservoir. Fill the water reservoir of the iron, turn it on to its highest setting, and turn on the steam setting.
Run the hot iron over an old, clean cloth for a few minutes to clean out any gunk within the iron and in the steam holes.
Step 6: Allow the iron to cool. Sit the iron face down on a protected surface, and allow the iron to cool.
Make sure to remove any excess water in the reservoir before storing it.
Cleaning an iron can protect your clothing when you need to iron them after you do the laundry. The cleaning process helps get rid of the gunk and mineral deposits that build up on the iron’s surface over time. When you are finished cleaning the iron, make sure to remove any water left in the reservoir to prevent the formation of mold within its interior.