When you iron your favorite white shirt-all of a sudden! — Iron on the sleeve leaves a brown spot. Darn! Darn.
Burned-on spray starch, melted synthetic fabric or rusty water in the reservoir may cause this. Whatever the cause, an iron’s soleplate should be cleaned if there is obvious debris, or when it glides no longer smoothly. To keep your clothing iron clean and iron marks a thing of the past, follow these tips on how to clean an iron properly.
When it’s time to clean your iron?
The frequency of cleaning the iron plate will depend on how much you’re using the appliance. Of example, you would need to clean the iron more often if you press school uniforms or work shirts on a daily basis than someone who relies heavily on the dry cleaner. So, when is iron plate cleaning time? Okay, a good thumb rule is to send a wash to the faceplate if it no longer glides smoothly over your wardrobes. That means that a lot of gunk has collected, and your iron is dragging.
Where to begin
Start with a manual from the owner! If it is not in your files, looking it up online is typically a fast task. What are some special instructions for your specific issue?
Clean your iron with vinegar
Mix 1⁄2 cup of distilled white vinegar and 1/2 cup of distilled water to get started. Pour in a cold, unplugged iron over the mixture.
Inspect the steam ducts with the iron in its upright position on a solid board. If some white residue can be seen in the cracks, use a wood or plastic toothpick or old toothbrush to clean the build-up away. Never use any metal that can damage your soleplate.
First, plug the iron in, turn it on, and set it to the steam setting. Enable the iron to heat for 5 minutes or more. Depress the steam button and hold for 20 to 30 seconds or until steam is free to flow out. Do this six times total.
Switch off the iron, unplug it and let the iron absolutely cool. Drain any remaining vinegar / water mixture out of the reservoir after cooling.
Even if you are diligent about using distilled water every time you iron, every few months you can use the vinegar / distilled water mixture to keep your iron steaming at its best.
Clean plastic melted on iron
If something plastic on your iron has melted, unplug and cool the iron. Fill a shallow pan with ice cubes and put the iron portion of the melted plastic-stained on the ice. Let it sit in to harden the plastic for five to ten minutes.
To chip away the hardened material, using a blunt plastic knife. Then use the vinegar / salt mixture to clean out the place.
Place the fabric in the freezer for at least one hour if the plastic has moved to the clothes you are ironing. Using the same dull plastic knife technique for gently scraping the plastic away. This is going to be sluggish, and may not fully remove the plastic.
Try never to iron over metal zippers, snaps, hooks or pins without a pressing towel to protect your soleplate from damage.
What other tools to clean iron
At highest temperature, heat up the iron and wear oven mittens to shield your hands from heat. Scrunch a newspaper, and use it to clean the soleplate of the iron. This is it!
- Kitchen sponges and scrubbers
Scrub the surface of the iron using a non-scratch kitchen sponge or scrubber with soap and water. Wipe it clean with a towel once you have done, and let it dry completely before use.
- Dryer sheet
Hold the heat of the iron low, and rub a few sheets of dryer over the soleplates. Keep rubbing, until the gunk is removed.
Using a wet cotton swab to scrub out the ventilation holes (steam vents). Dip a swab of cotton into a water and liquid detergent solution. Use the moist cotton swab then by applying and scrubbing the holes in the steam.
What other supplies to clean iron
- Pasta of baking soda and water
This method is a great way to dissolve any gunk on your iron which made itself at home! All you have to do is add some baking soda and a bit of water to make a paste.
Then, use a soft brush or towel to wipe this paste on the iron’s soleplate. Using water to just wash it clean. Make sure that the paste is cleaned away absolutely, and let the iron dry before using.
- Acetone nail polish remover
This is a perfect way of dissolving and wipping dirt from an iron! Turn on the iron, and heat it up. Soak a cotton ball with a remover for the acetone nail polish.
Dab the soaked cotton ball easily onto the hot surface while wearing oven mittens. Acetone nail polish remover easily evaporates but it does a fantastic job of dissolving any gunk! Wipe the surface with water and a cloth until finished.
- Dish detergent
A few drops of liquid dish detergent into some water is one of the simplest ways to clean a flat iron. Then use a fluffy rag, cloth, or paper towel dipped into the solution to clean off any grease on the soleplate of the iron.
Sprinkle over a sheet of paper with a generous amount of salt. Then, run the hot iron over the sheet of paper the helps remove stains and other gunk. Run the iron several times, then unplug the iron to allow it to cool. Wipe the salt with a dry, soft cloth, until the iron is cold.
Just rub some white toothpaste over the soleplate of the iron. Then, with a wet rag, wipe it clean. Remember to absolutely let the iron dry before use.
Tips for Iron Maintenance
- Using purified water in the steam compartment to prevent mineral deposits, where appropriate.
- After every use drain the reservoir of water.
- Let the iron cool completely after each use, and wipe the soleplate with a dampened microfiber cloth to eliminate any rogue fibers or starch residue.
- As you can see, it takes little time and energy to clean an iron soleplate but it can make a huge difference in how well your appliance operates.
(source: merrymaids.com, mollymaid.com, thespruce.com, and handy.com)