Care & Repair

The Benefits of Preventing and Treating Rust

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So the other day, I purchased a used cast iron pot online. I figured it was fine being used since it was only a pot and I would clean it thoroughly anyway. Well, when I opened the box, aside from the weight of it taking me by surprise, everything seemed fine. I then filled the sink with soapy water and submerged the pot into the sink. I washed it and then dried it thoroughly and placed it on the counter while I went to break down the box and place it in the recycling bin inside the garage. The garage is just right off of the kitchen and so I may have been gone for all of five minutes. When I returned, to my utter dismay, the pot had coppery orange spots within and outside of it. Can you believe it? The darn thing was starting to rust!

I had always been taught growing up that the best way to prevent rusting was to keep metal items dry and away from moisture. So you can understand why I was shocked to see that within a matter of minutes, the darn thing was rusted. That makes me wonder if it was in fact rusted like that all along and some sort of polish, possibly shoe polish, was used to hide the true condition of the pot. I guess certain things you just cannot buy used, no matter how good the deal is. Unfortunately, even if you buy something brand new, if not taken care of properly, it too can go to waste.

For instance, leaving a brand new bicycle out in the rain could possibly leave you with an expensive piece of rusted metal. My kids love to play outside and as much as I tell them to put their bikes in the garage, they often leave their bicycles lying on the grass out front. Well, after this little fiasco I experienced with the pot, I seeing that my old school knowledge of housekeeping, if you will, had failed, I started to search online for remedies for and prevention of rust. I found a rust inhibitor spray that will at least help prevent the rust from forming on my children’s bikes. After some more searching, low and behold, I found a blog with tips on how to remove rust from a cast iron pan!

Though I still had plans on returning the used cast iron pan for a brand new one, I was still elated to have found the remedy for the rust on the pot as this information is just good to know. It is amazing at how we think we know something until we are actually put in a situation to test that knowledge only to find out we were totally wrong. Or maybe I wasn’t wrong. Maybe the pot was already rusted indeed and merely camouflaged for the purpose of sale. Who knows. What I do know is that because of that little mishap, I was able to learn additional tips and tricks that will come in handy in the future.

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