Cast iron figurines have a timeless look. They would be a nice display to have in your home or office setup. However, these iron figurines only look good when they are cleaned. It is possible that over time, such figurines would be oxidized and get dull. That is not something you want. As such, we have looked at a number of ways you can clean these figurines, leaving them with the right shine.
4 Easy Ways to Clean Cast Iron Figurines
Dusting Off The Dirt and Debris
Dusting is the first thing that comes to mind when you decide to clean figurines. With this method, it is easy to remove the loose dirt and debris that might be on the surface. It is the first step before deepening into additional cleaning methods.
Dusting is best achieved by using a clean soft-bristled brush. You could also use a lint-free microfiber cloth. Brush over the figurines gently with the brush and get into the crevices removing as much dirt and debris as possible.
It is possible that you may experience challenges with some spots when dusting. In this case, gently scrub the spots until the dirt comes out. We advise using a soft brush or toothbrush at this stage.
Choose a soft brush specifically designed for cleaning purposes. You can dampen the brush in distilled water or still use it dry. Go on to gently scrub the surface in a circular motion focusing on the areas with more dirt.
No need for applying too much pressure while scrubbing the figurines. Too much pressure may lead to scratches, which is not what you need.
Once you are through with scrubbing, use a clean, dry cloth to wipe any loose dirt or soap residue.
Use Compressed Air
You may also consider compressed air to remove any loose dirt and dust. The good thing about using air compressors is that they can remove dirt from hard-to-reach areas. It is better even when you have a brush attachment to loosen the dirt and the air to blow it away.
There are some precautions you still have to consider when using compressed air. Hold the nozzle 6 to 8 inches to avoid damaging the figurines.
Wet Cleaning Techniques
It is possible to also consider wet cleaning techniques. All the others mentioned above are dry cleaning methods.
We start by preparing the cleaning solution. Here, diluting mild soap in distilled water in a basin is best. Gentle dish soap without abrasives and harsh chemicals should do quite well. You may also buy a cast iron-specific cleaner to leave you with a better look in the end. Check out different stores, and you should end up with one.
The next step is simply to immerse the iron figurines in the cleaning solution. Depending on the size of the figurines, only use enough to ensure they do not overcrowd the cleaning solution. Brush gently to remove the stubborn stains and dirt from the figurines.
Sometimes you only want to clean a small section of the iron figurines and not all of it. In such a case, you can do spot cleaning. Use cotton swabs to clean the spots that might be dirty.
Once you are satisfied that the iron figurines are clean, proceed to rinse them in clean distilled water. This type of water is good for removing soap residue or the cleaning solution. We do not recommend using tap water since it contains minerals and other impurities that would contaminate the surface you just cleaned.
You should now proceed to dry the cast iron figurines to prevent cases of rust or any other moisture-related damage. Start by using a soft microfiber towel or cloth and path the figurine removing as much moisture as possible. You can also place the dried figurine in a well-ventilated area to dry better.
Sometimes you may consider using a hairdryer on a low setting to expedite drying.
Maintenance of Cast Iron Figurines
As part of maintaining your cast iron figurines, we recommend doing a couple of things. These help in keeping the figurines looking good all the time.
Regular Dusting and Cleaning Routine
We recommend that you consider regularly cleaning and dusting the iron figurines. Make sure that you use a soft-bristle brush. This largely helps to avoid having a build-up of dust and debris on the surface.
It means whenever you want to clean the figurines, it is an easy process that may not necessarily involve scrubbing.
Apply a Layer of Protective Wax
Iron figurines could use a layer of protective wax to ensure that they keep looking good for longer. Wax is key in ensuring the figurines can maintain their shine and reduce the chances of rust formation.
When you opt for protective wax, make sure it is meant for cast iron. Follow the given manufacturer’s instructions to apply the wax so that it can do its job well.
Do Not Expose to Moisture and High Temperatures
You are also advised not to expose the iron figurines to excess moisture. We all know moisture can be quite the enemy of cast iron. So, keep the figurines away from excessive humidity, damp environments, and water splashes. If the water soaks the figurines, you should dry them before storage.
Seek Professional Help if Needed
Sometimes you may have antique iron figurines and do not know how best to clean them. Such valuable figurines could use the help of an expert in the field. Look around your location for restoration specialists who have the expertise and tools to handle delicate and intricate figurines. They will also do a good job restoring them to their original condition.
Iron figurines generally look well if you take good care of them. This includes cleaning and waxing the figurines. Since these can be your valuables, it is crucial to take the right steps to have them cleaned properly.
We have given you a couple of methods to ensure the figurines look their best. Make sure not to use any harsh chemicals, as they can erode the surface of the figurines.