Re­mov­ing those rust stains in­side stain­less steel urns

Weekend Post (South Africa) - - Puzzles, Cartoons & Gwen - GWEN BIS­SEKER

Can you please ad­vise me on how to re­move brown stains, like rust, on the in­side of my stain­less steel Anvil urn? – PH, Port El­iz­a­beth.

The marks can be rubbed­with a cloth wrung out in white spirit vine­gar. If that doesn’t work there are two stain­less steel clean­ers you can try.

One is called Cit­rus, ob­tain­able from Brae­mer Paints in Sid­well. It is said to be ef­fec­tive against rust and is de­scribed as eco­log­i­cally friendly. It has “a lovely smell” and is kind to your hands – no gloves needed.

Dy­nachem Stain­less Steel Cleaner, ob­tain­able from Dy­nachem in North End or Storm En­gi­neer­ing in Lin­ton Grange, re­quires gloves while you work.

It should be ap­plied from the 500ml can with a very fine Scotch Brite pad, and works on pol­ished stain­less steel. Rinse out well after the clean­ing.

My cot­ton slacks, beige in colour, have been slightly scorched near the an­kle area dur­ing iron­ing. Is there a way of re­duc­ing or elim­i­nat­ing this mark? – RT, Uiten­hage. If the fi­bre hasn’t been dam­aged, there is a chance that you will be able to re­move the mark. Dampen the area in a so­lu­tion of one part glyc­er­ine and two parts wa­ter, and rub gen­tly into the fi­bre with your fin­gers. Then soak in a so­lu­tion of 50g bo­rax and 500ml warm wa­ter. Leave for 15 min­utes and then rinse well.

An al­ter­na­tive method is to make a paste of bo­rax and glyc­er­ine, us­ing suf­fi­cient quan­ti­ties as needed, and spread this over the scorched area. Leave for a few hours and then wash in warm, soapy wa­ter. I am look­ing for a “leather crafts­man” to re­pair my bel­lows. They are made of wood which is cov­ered with leather and a thin brass plate. The two wooden sides have leather in­serts for the ex­pan­sion and con­trac­tion. The size is ap­prox 24cm x 60cm. – JS, Port El­iz­a­beth.

My go-to people for leather prob­lems are Leather Sys­tems. I spoke to Andrew, who has helped read­ers in the past, and he was con­fi­dent that the bel­lows could be re­paired. I am send­ing you his con­tact de­tails. Some time ago you men­tioned Sebo dry pow­der car­pet cleaner, which was claimed to take out al­most any stain. My dog messed on my car­pet some time ago and I re­gret not tack­ling the stain ear­lier. Where could I ob­tain this car­pet clean­ing prod­uct? – LP, Port El­iz­a­beth.

Sebo is a Ger­many com­pany that mar­kets clean­ing prod­ucts in SA through head­quar­ters in Rood­e­poort. Among the prod­ucts I found on their web­site is Sebo Duo-P dry car­pet clean­ing pow­der. I phoned their helpline and found that there is an out­let in Port El­iz­a­beth – Barry Kapelus Car­pet­ing in New­ton Park.

In my files there is a ref­er­ence to Oxy So­lu­tion, sold through pet shops and de­scribed as a pet stain and odour “de­stroyer”.

Is it cor­rect that in­sec­ti­cide sprays work well as a stain re­mover? What about side ef­fects? – KL, Port El­iz­a­beth.

These aerosol sprays are in­deed quite ef­fec­tive as stain re­movers, and shouldn’t cause a prob­lem if used spar­ingly. But there is no real need to use them. The ac­tive in­gre­di­ent in the spray is a sol­vent. It is thus more sen­si­ble to use some­thing like min­eral tur­pen­tine, which is the main stain re­mover used by my pro­fes­sional car­pet clean­ing friend, An­dre.

Reader “MB” came up with an in­ter­est­ing al­ter­na­tive. Since many aerosols use sim­i­lar com­bi­na­tions, she sug­gested the less haz­ardous air fresh­en­ers in which the per­fume com­po­nent is de­signed to evap­o­rate and should not leave a sur­face residue.

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