rust from a tea kettle

How to Remove Rust From a Tea Kettle (The Right Way) 

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Tea is a beloved beverage for millions around the world. There’s nothing quite like the comfort of cozying up with a good book and a warm cup of tea. But it can be frustrating when you find that your kettle has rust inside it. 

It is not only unsightly but can also leave brownish-red stains on your tea and potentially affect the taste. Before you throw your beloved tea kettle away, it’s essential to know that rust can be easily removed using simple household items. 

How to remove rust from a tea kettle? You can use vinegar or lemon juice, which have acidic properties, to break down the rust in the tea kettle. You can also prevent rust from forming in the tea kettle by regularly cleaning the kettle and keeping it dry. 

In this blog post, we’ll teach you how to remove rust from your tea kettle, so you can enjoy your tea without any pesky rust stains.

Why Does Rust Form Inside Your Tea Kettle?

Is rust forming inside your tea kettle an issue of poor quality or inferior material? Let’s first explore why rust is forming and what you can do about it. 


The root cause of rust inside tea kettles is often the water itself. Your water is rich in dissolved minerals such as calcium and magnesium. When you boil the water, it can leave deposits on the inside of your kettle. Eventually, these deposits combine with moisture to create rust. 

The rust particles can accumulate over time, creating an unsightly, unhygienic, and sometimes even dangerous coating.

Fortunately, using distilled water or filtered water is an effective way to minimize the mineral deposits that get left behind after boiling. 

Material of the Kettle 

The likelihood of rust forming inside your kettle is also dependent on the material of the kettle. Stainless steel or glass kettles are less likely to rust than those made from other materials like iron or aluminum. 

These materials are prone to oxidation, which can cause rust to form more quickly. However, with prolonged exposure to hard water, even stainless steel or glass kettles may eventually succumb.

How to Remove Rust From a Tea Kettle 

Fortunately, if your kettle has already started to rust, there are a few ways that you can remove the rust buildup effectively. Let’s take a look. 



Step 1: Prepare the Vinegar Solution

Prepare a vinegar solution by mixing equal parts of water and vinegar. You can also use a few drops of lemon juice in the mixture to add some fresh scent to the kettle.

Step 2: Heat the Vinegar Solution 

Pour the vinegar solution into the tea kettle and place it on the stove over high heat. Allow the solution to boil for 15 minutes until it starts to break down the rust.

Then, you can wait for the solution to cool down completely.

Step 3: Scrub the Tea Kettle With a Brush

Use a brush or scouring pad to scrub off the rust stains from the kettle’s interior. If the rust stains are stubborn, you can add some salt to the vinegar solution to help break down the rust.

Step 4: Rinse and Dry the Tea Kettle

After scrubbing off the rust stains, rinse the tea kettle with water to remove the vinegar solution. You can rinse it multiple times to make sure that all the vinegar and rust residue is gone. Finally, dry the tea kettle with a towel.

Lemon Juice and Salt

lemon juice and salt

Step 1: Gather the Necessary Items

First, gather all the necessary items. The materials you’ll need for this process are a half-cut lemon, salt, water, and a soft cloth. You’ll be using these items to make a paste to scrub the kettle.

Step 2: Mix the Salt and Lemon

In a small bowl, mix the salt and lemon juice to make a paste. The ratio of lemon juice to salt depends on how much rust needs to be removed. 

If there’s a large amount of rust, add more salt to make the paste thicker. If there’s only a little rust, add more lemon juice to make the mixture more acidic.

Step 3: Apply the Paste

Once the paste is ready, apply it to the rusted area of the kettle. Scrub the area gently with a soft cloth or sponge. You can also use half a lemon and a little bit of salt to scrub the area. 

Be sure to cover the entire rusty area with the paste. While rubbing, make sure not to scratch the kettle. Scrub the area until the rust has been removed from the kettle.

Step 4: Rinsing the Kettle

After you have scrubbed off the rust, rinse the kettle with clean water. Be sure that you have rinsed the kettle properly to remove all the paste. 

Check for any leftover rust on the kettle. If there is still some rust trapped in tough areas, repeat the process until the rust has been completely removed.

Step 5: Drying the Kettle

After rinsing the kettle, let it dry completely. After it has dried, use a clean and dry cloth to wipe the kettle.

How to Remove Scales from Tea Kettle 

If you notice white formations inside your tea kettle, that’s actually not rust but limescale. Limescale is formed due to minerals like calcium or magnesium in the water, and they are also quite easy to remove with the following methods. 


1. White Vinegar

White vinegar can be an excellent solution for removing scales from your tea kettle. Start by filling your kettle with water and add a cup of white vinegar. Boil the mixture for 10 to 15 minutes, then let it cool for 30 minutes. 

Once cooled, drain the mixture and rinse the kettle with clean water. Wipe it off with a dry cloth, and you will find that the scales have come off easily.

2. Baking Soda and Water

Baking soda is a natural cleaner and is an effective solution for cleaning a tea kettle. Add baking soda to the water until it forms a paste, then apply the paste to the scales. Let it sit for an hour, and scrub the kettle thoroughly with a brush. 

Rinse the kettle with clean water and wipe it with a clean cloth.

3. Lemon and Salt 

Lemons have a natural acidic quality that can help remove scales from your tea kettle. Cut one or two lemons and squeeze the juice into the kettle. Add some salt to the kettle, then fill it with water. 

Boil the kettle for 15 minutes or until the scale comes off easily. Drain the mixture and rinse the kettle with clean water. Wipe it off with a dry, clean cloth.

4. Commercial Descalers

If the scales in your tea kettle are stubborn and refuse to be removed with natural methods, you can opt for commercial descalers. 

These are available at most home goods stores and are an excellent choice for heavy buildup. Follow the instructions on the packaging carefully and wear gloves when using the product.

5. Regular Cleaning 

Finally, one of the best ways to ensure that scales do not build up in your tea kettle is by doing regular cleaning. 

After using the kettle, clean it with mild soap and wipe it with a clean cloth. This step will prevent scales from building up.

How to Prevent Rust from Forming in Your Tea Kettle

The best way to remove rust in your tea kettle is to prevent rust from forming in the first place. Below are some tried and tested tips on preventing rust from forming in your tea kettle.

rust from a tea kettle

1. Clean Your Tea Kettle Regularly

Cleaning your tea kettle is the first step in preventing rust formation. You should always rinse your kettle out after each use, and if possible, pour hot soapy water into it and scrub it gently with a soft sponge. 

If you notice any scaling inside the kettle, you can use vinegar and water to help remove it. Always rinse the kettle thoroughly with hot water after cleaning.

2. Dry Your Tea Kettle

A wet environment is a breeding ground for rust. Therefore, you should empty the water and dry your tea kettle after each use. 

You can do this by tipping the kettle upside down to let any water drain out and then wiping it with a dry cotton cloth. If your kettle has any small crevices where water can get trapped, use a cotton swab to absorb any excess.

3. Avoid Using Abrasive Materials to Clean Your Kettle

Using abrasive materials such as steel wool and harsh chemicals can lead to scratches and weaken the metal of your tea kettle. Scratches can lead to rust formation, and weakened metals can begin to corrode over time. 

Instead of using these harsh materials, opt for soft sponges and natural cleaning agents such as vinegar, baking soda, or lemon juice.

4. Invest in High-Quality Tea Kettles

The quality of the material used to make your tea kettle can also impact whether it rusts or not. Stainless steel, enamel, glass, and ceramic are materials that are unlikely to rust, and they are also safe to use. 

Conversely, cheap metals are more prone to rusting, and they may pose health hazards.

5. Store Your Tea Kettle With Care

Storing your tea kettle is just as important as cleaning it. You should store your kettle in a dry environment, preferably where it is not exposed to air. You can also place a silica gel pack inside the kettle to absorb any excess moisture. 

Finally, ensure that there are no abrasive materials, such as metal utensils, inside the kettle that could scratch the metal.

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