Menu Close

How Can I Fix Up Rusty Bar Stools?

Metal bar stools are a great option to have in your kitchen, bar, or restaurant. These stools boast versatile features with great sturdiness and attractive design as well. However, proper care and maintenance is a crucial thing to ensure that your sleek and stylish barstools look lovely and new.

Detailed Methods on How to Fix up Rusty Bar Stool

Some metal bar stools are prone to rust and rust is one of the major drawbacks for metal bar stools. Rust can seem difficult to clean at times. However, don’t worry anymore about your bar stool with rust, because this article will make it easy for you. This article will provide you with various methods of how to fix up your rusty bar stools.

how to clean rusty bar stools

1. The Aluminium Foil method.

This is one of the best and effective DIY methods of cleaning and protecting your chrome bar stools from rust. The aluminum foil method removes rust via a chemical reaction, oxidation, that takes place when cleaning. Aluminum foil consists of aluminum metal, which easily and quickly oxidizes compared to other metals. This helps in removing the rust on the chrome bar stool surface. The following are the step-by-step guide of fixing up rusty bar stools using the aluminum foil method.

  • Using clean water and a soft piece of cloth or sponge, clean the bar stool surface to remove dirt and debris.
  • To clean water, soak the aluminum foil. Note that clean salty water works best: this is because the water electrolytes together with the salts enhance the speed of the chemical reaction, hence effective and faster cleaning.
  • Crumple the aluminum foil into a ball-like shape with the shiny side up.
  • Using the crumbled aluminum foil, rud back and forth on the rust spots on the surface of the bar stool. Put more focus on the heavily rusted spots.
  • After complete removal of the rust, clean the areas you have been working on with a wet clean cloth, to remove any remaining residue.
  • Finally, using a dry clean cloth, dry the bar stool thoroughly.

The working principle behind this method takes advantage of the oxidation reaction. During the reaction, the aluminum foil consumes the oxygen in the rust, thereby breaking the rust and turning it to a slight polish. Besides the oxidation reaction, aluminum aids in filing the rust while filling and sealing the rust spots. These result in a long-lasting, shiny, and polished chrome surface.

2. The Metal Polish method.

This is another DIY method of removing and preventing rust on bar stools as well as other household metals. This method involves polishing the bar stool surface using the right polish. For instance, 4-in-1 metal polish aids in removing dirt and rust on the surface, as well as preventing future rusting. This method can be applied to bar stools made of stainless steel, nickel, chrome, aluminum, and more. The following are the step-by-step guide of fixing up rusty bar stools using the metal polish method.

  • Start by cleaning the bar stool using clean soapy water and a soft sponge or cloth. This helps in removing dust, dirt, and debris, hence a clear working surface. In case the surface is very dirty, you can add vinegar to the water to enhance easy stains removal.
  • Apply the metal polish the rusted spots.
  • Spread the metal polish all over the rusted spots using a soft piece of cloth, to prevent scratching the chrome surface.
  • Rub the polish in a circular pattern using extremely fine brass or steel wool, and ensure that you do not use too much pressure.
  • Using clean water, rinse the barstool to obtain a smoothly polished and rust-free surface.

Note that chrome polish works very well for quality and complete rust removal, however, it is quite costly than other methods.

3. White Vinegar.

White vinegar is a household item that can be used to effectively remove rust. However, this method requires you to soak the rusted surface in vinegar for a whole night, This makes this method unsuitable for bar stools and other furniture. However, this method can be used in combination with WD-40 and aluminum foil to fix up rusty bar stools. WD-40 is a multi-purpose agent and a non-corrosive agent as well. It helps in cleaning and keeping surfaces dry and rust-free. The following is the step-by-step guide.

  • On the rusted spots, spray the WD-40.
  • Using a clean cloth, wipe it to remove dirt and grease from the areas.
  • Then sprinkle the white vinegar on the rusted areas.
  • Soak the aluminum foil to the white vinegar, and then scrub the surfaces until the rust is completely removed. Note, in case the rust persists, you can keep changing the aluminum foil, and remember to dip it in the vinegar before scrubbing.

4. Lime and Salt.

how to fix up rusty bar stools

The mixture of lime and salt helps in softening the rust, thus, making it easy to be removed. The function of the lime juice is to activate the salt crystals. However, in case lime is missing, you can use lemon: lemon and vinegar have similar properties and work quickly on rust. The following is the step-by-step guide for using this method.

  • On the rusted spots, sprinkle some salt crystals, then take lime juice and sprinkle it on top of the salt crystals.
  • Repeat the first step once again. This is to ensure that you form a thick layer with an even mixture distribution.
  • Leave the layer to settle for about two to three hours.
  • Remove the layer and wipe the surface.
  • Dry the surface completely to prevent the metal surface from oxidizing again.
  • Finally, take the WD-40 and spray and lubricate it on the surface. This prevents future rusting.

5. Baking Soda and Water.

This method is just similar to the lime and salt method, both in terms of working and procedure. The mixture of baking soda and water works the same as the lime and salt mixture in loosening the rust. The method steps:

  • On the rusted spots, sprinkle some baking soda, then take water and sprinkle it on top of the baking soda.
  • Repeat the first step once again. This is to ensure that you form a thick layer and the rusted spots are evenly coated.
  • Leave the layer to settle for about one to two hours.
  • Scrub the spots with a brush until the rust is removed completely.
  • Finally, rinse the surface with a wet cloth to remove the remaining residues and dry the surface. Note, you can also apply WD-40 to prevent future rusting.


In conclusion, despite rust looking like permanent damage to your bar stool or any other furniture, giving up on it or throwing it away should not be the decision to be made. The above article has provided you with detailed methods on how to easily fix up your rusty bar stools, and how to prevent future rusting as well.

You May Also Like: