How to Remove Rust from Carbon Steel Knife

Rusting is commonly associated with metal materials. It occurs when there is a combination of moisture and oxygen, which later causes corrosion.

You should always ensure you have stored your knife very well to avoid rusting. Please keep it away from any form of moisture and oxygen combination.

Don’t worry if you have a rusty carbon steel knife, as this article will direct you to several suitable ways of dealing with rust on blades.

Below are the three ways of dealing with rust.

1. Using the baking soda

This is a reliable method of making a carbon steel knife free from rust. With this method, you will require mineral oil, a cloth, water, steel wool, and baking soda.

Before starting the clean-up process, wash the carbon steel knife using a mild solution and a cloth.

It is not advisable to wash your carbon steel knife with water, but you can use it and immediately dry it if you run out of options.

Moisture is one of the leading factors contributing to rusting on all metal surfaces. That is why you are required to ensure that your blade is out of reach from moisture.

Once you are done cleaning, take a small quantity of baking soda and water. Stir until you attain a light paste mixture.

Put your carbon steel knife on the surface. Followed by applying the light paste mixture on both sides of the knife.

This is only if both sides of the blades have been exposed to rusting. After application, you will wait for about five to thirty minutes.

The duration is determined by the surface affected by rust on the blade. If the blade has rust all over it, you will have to wait for a long time, and vice versa.

After this, you can proceed to the next step. With the use of steel wool, you can start scouring both sides of the blades.

You can re-do the paste application and scrub the blade until all the rust is eliminated. After you are contented that all the rust has been rubbed off on both sides of the blade.

Take a cloth and wipe both sides of the blade to eliminate all the dust particles and the light paste mixture.

Take a small amount of the mineral oil and apply it to both sides of the blade. Mineral oil gives your blade protection against rusting.

Finally, you can clean off the excess mineral oil. Using steel wool and any other abrasive tool in scouring the blade can lead to bluntness; I advise you to re-sharpen your blade.

2. Use of vinegar

First of all, if your rusty knife is quite expensive or you hold it dearly, don’t clean it with these methods. This method will expose your blade to adverse risks.

You can clean with other methods like baking soda or potato method. The requirements for this process are a cloth, mineral oil, paper towels, sponge, and vinegar.

There are many types of vinegar; you may be confused about which is the best to use. The white vinegar is the most reliable one when compared to the rest.

Other types of vinegar can cause staining and also harm your blade. Generally, before you start to remove the rust, you will have to clean your blade and dry it using a cloth.

Dip a paper towel into the vinegar(white) and cautiously wrap it around the blade for around 5 minutes. Don’t exceed the five minutes as your blade can be exposed to serious detrimental and ceaseless staining.

After 5 minutes, unwrap the blade and scour it using a sponge. This method is more applicable to blades that have grievous rusting.

3. The use of potato

If you are an individual who is into natural ways of removing rusts, the potato method will highly suit you. It is not an efficient process for complete rust removal as other methods.

But it reduces the risks of harming your blade in the process of rust removal, unlike the other methods of eliminating rust.

For this process, you will be required to have big sized potato, mineral oil, and cloth.

Stick your blade into the potato, ensure that the rusty surface is covered inside the potato. Let it stay inside the potato for at most one hour and remove it; with a sponge, wipe the blade.

By wiping, you will be loosening the rust particles on the knife, and now you can wipe all the rust down using a dry cloth. Lastly, don’t forget to apply the mineral oil to the blade’s sides.


Rust formation on carbon steel knives occurs when several favorable conditions are present. The conditions are humidity and temperature; additionally, a salty environment will also lead to rusting steel.

And if rusting is not well handled, the carbon knife will be prone to corrosion and, at this point to may lose your favorite carbon steel knife.

To eradicate all the rust on your blade, kindly try these methods.

  • Using the baking soda
  • Use of vinegar
  • The use of potato