You’ve decided to add a bit of Old World charm and elegance to your home-you’ve incorporated wrought iron into the design. Whether you have wrought iron outside or inside, you couldn’t feel prouder of how it looks. It looks old-fashioned, solid, and ornate.

On the other hand, you know what the elements and the unkempt fingers at your home can do to that wrought iron. So, you need some way to protect your new decorative elements and keep them looking as impressive as the day you bought them.

Below, you’ll find four tips that will help you keep your wrought iron in like-new condition for decades to come. Of course, if you don’t feel up to the maintenance yourself, you can always hire an expert to do it for you.

1. Dust Your Wrought Iron Daily

With the other steps in this list, you don’t have to do them daily. However, dust collects in your home every day, and you should wipe dust away from your surfaces with a microfiber cloth to keep your home and air clean. This daily routine matters especially if you have wrought iron because the iron has a texture that can hold onto dust if debris sits on the metal too long.

Don’t neglect this part of your daily upkeep. Dust your wrought iron so the debris doesn’t build up and become a semi-permanent feature of the metal.

2. Use Warm Water and Mild Detergent to Remove Household Debris

Maybe you have wrought iron in your kitchen, dining area, bathroom, or bedroom. In any of these areas, you could accidentally get food, toothpaste, or other contaminants on your metal décor. And again, the longer the debris sits there, the harder you’ll have to work to get it off. Additionally, some things, like toothpaste, might eat through the primer on the metal and lead to corrosion.

When you, your spouse, your children, or your pets get contaminants on the metal, clean it off that same day, and use a gentle cleaner. Don’t use harsh chemicals like the ones you’d use to scrub your bathtub. Use a less powerful concoction like a solution of warm water and mild dish soap. Add only one or two drops of soap to a small water bottle.

Additionally, when you scrub, use gentle repetition, not force and abrasion, to lift the debris. A soft cloth and repetitive motions protect the paint, the primer, and the metal itself from erosion and corrosion.

3. Scrub, File, Prime, and Paint Your Wrought Iron as It Ages

You’ll probably need to touch up your wrought iron occasionally. When you do, make sure you take the following steps:

  • Use a bristled wire brush to loosen all the chipping paint on the iron’s surface.
  • File or scrape rough paint or metal patches until they become smooth.
  • Use an approved acid, like phosphoric acid, to remove any chemical debris from the surfaces you want to paint.
  • Prepare the wrought iron with a metal primer.
  • Paint your wrought iron, starting with the upper parts of the item and moving to the bottom.

If you don’t know which acids, primers, or paints to use, consult with an expert at your local home improvement store. This professional can point you toward the best brands and products.

4. Remove Rust When It Appears-Do Not Ignore It

Rust removal requires a step-by-step process as well. Follow the tips below to get started:

  • Use your wire brush to scrub the rust and remove any flakes.
  • Dip fine steel wool into kerosene and rub the rest of the rust away.
  • Cover the previously rusted area in liquid wax.

If your wrought iron décor has rust all over it, you might want to replace the entire piece. Or, in some cases, you can use naval jelly to completely dissolve the rust. You might undermine the piece’s structural integrity in the meantime, though.


With the tips above, you can keep your wrought iron home features or decorations pristine for decades to come. If you have any specific questions about your wrought iron, contact the seller or a professional at your home improvement store.