How to Easily Clean Fasteners




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Video tutorial on how to easy clean rusty or painted fasteners. This is a cheap at home method which will remove any rust, paint, and even thread locker from the fasteners. A large amount of fasteners can be cleaned at once and using any other methods can be fairly time consuming. Unfortunately I do not have access to a tumbler either.

Tools/Supplies Needed:

  • container
  • fasteners
  • wire brush, wire wheel, abrasive pad
  • paint
  • white vinegar
  • water

Step 1: Getting Started

Have a large enough container, preferably something with a lid which will hold all the fasteners. Place the fasteners in the container, no need to clean them first. Submerge them in white vinegar and close the lid on the container, then allow them to soak for one or two days.

Step 2: Rinse

As you can see the vinegar is quite discoloured from the rust and other contaminants that were removed from the bolts. Place them in a bucket, use soap if desired and wash the fasteners to remove the vinegar residue, along with any impurities.

Step 3: Cleaning the Surface

Use a heat gun if desired to remove any moisture from the surface. Then finally clean up using a wire brush. A wire brush attachment can also be used on a bench grinder, drill press, or hand held drill. This will remove the black oxide coating from the vinegar.

Step 4: All Done!

Finally you'll be left with perfectly clean bolts, free of any coatings, rust, and paint. Apply a finish if your choice.



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    5 Discussions


    4 months ago

    When the bolts are greasy, I soak them in Varsol for a while, dump them in a basket and use a power washer on them.

    Parts Cleaning Basket.jpg

    2 years ago

    You've got to love the power of good old white vinegar!

    Good info, thanks! :)

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Super inexpensive and not hazardous. Thank you :)


    2 years ago

    Don't ask me why cos I don't know but cleaning is far better if the vinegar is hot. Another magical cleaner is WD40.

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Oh I believe that. I know with cleaning calcium from the kettle, the vinegar must be boiled and now just soaked.