How to clean an iron

Helping you to get ready for work by smartening up your clothing, irons are the final hurdle in your washing and drying routine.  It’s very easy, therefore, to take advantage of this household friend- forgetting in the process that it needs to be cleaned regularly itself.  The combination of high heat in the iron, the electricity used to power it, and the added factor of water are essential reasons to keep the iron clean, so that it subsequently runs safely and efficiently.

To begin, it is essential to remember that when you begin to clean an iron, in most cases the appliance must be switched off, and allowed to cool.

The methods which enable you to clean the metal plate on the iron vary depending on which substance is stuck to it.

  • Waxy stains do not require any specialist products, and require that the iron is turned on, in order for the substance to be removed.  You need to turn the iron on to it’s highest setting, and run it over some absorbent paper, such as newspaper.  The waxy stain should be displaced onto the paper, preventing it from leaving any lasting damage on your iron.
  • Oily substances require the use of ammonia, which needs to be rubbed onto the metal plate with a damp, clean cloth.  After this, simply rinse the surface of the plate, to remove the oily stain.  It is vital that the iron is unplugged for the duration of this process.

Steam iron

To clean the inside of the iron’s vents and pipes, a more gentle touch is required.  Dip a pipe cleaner or cotton bud into the vent, and slowly lift out the residue from within the iron.  Ensure that you use something equally as soft, that isn’t too sharp, to avoid risking damage to the inside of your iron.

For all surfaces on the iron, including the handle, you can use a simple solution found in your kitchen cupboard.  On a clean, damp cloth add vinegar before wiping the surfaces; removing any visible dirt and grime.  If it’s been a while since you last cleaned your iron, you can mix a little baking soda with the vinegar before adding it to the cloth.  It’ll help you to remove tougher stains.

Vinegar can also be used to clean the reservoir of the iron.  Just pour an equal amount of vinegar and warm water into the iron and switch it on.  For about five minutes, leave the iron to steam, allowing the vinegar to reach the ducts through the steam.  After this time, remove the water and vinegar solution from the iron, and rinse with clean water.  Be sure to make sure all vinegar is removed before you start ironing!

The information can be found in full at the Creative Homewares website.

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