Got rust? We can show you how to get rid of it. The key is to properly prep the rusty steel before you paint. A little work up front will yield long lasting results.
Scrub partially rusted areas with a wire brush to remove flakes and powdery surface rust, then prime with a rust-inhibitive primer.
Grind down heavily rusted spots faster with a wire wheel and a drill or angle grinder.
Coat deeply rusted areas with a special primer that chemically converts rust to a paintable surface.
That old wrought iron fence or steel gutter may look terrible, but with the right preparation and primer, most rusty metal surfaces can be restored to almost new.
The first step is to clean off loose rust and flaking paint and then apply a rust-inhibitive primer. You don't need to get down to bare, shiny metal—just clean off the flakes and powdery surface rust that prevent paint from adhering. However, badly rusted areas need more prep work and possibly a special primer.
Start with a wire brush (Photo 1). If the area is heavily rusted and pitted and wire brushing by hand is ineffective, use a drill with a wire wheel (Photo 2) and a primer that adheres to rusted surfaces, such as Krylon Rust Tough or Rust-Oleum.
For spots that are very badly rusted or too delicate or detailed to clean thoroughly, use a product like Rust-Oleum Rust Reformer, which soaks into the rust and changes it into a non-rusting, paintable surface (Photo 3).
Have the necessary tools for this DIY project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.
You will also need a Wire wheel.
Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here's a list.
Rust-Oleum Rust Reformer may be needed for badly rusted areas that can't be abraded.