Rust on Your Party Tent? Let’s Get That Taken Care Of!
Here’s a universal statement if ever there was one: rust is annoying. It’s unsightly. It can leave your party tent equipment looking messy and unprofessional. And removing rust from fabric and metal might seem like a daunting challenge.
Searching the web for rust removal solutions presents a seemingly endless list of potential options. There are countless rust removal products available in stores and online. CLR, Magic Erasers, Slimy Grimy, On & Off, Rust Aid … there are too many rust removal products to reasonably name here. And many of those will work fine, too. CLR and Magic Erasers are very popular in the party rental industry. They definitely get the job done.
If you don’t want to use harsh chemicals, there are alternatives. Lemon juice and white vinegar are simple, cost effective options of rust removal from vinyl fabric and your metal hardware. For heavier stains, you may need a little table salt, too.
If you’re using chemicals, follow the instructions they provide. Be sure to test them somewhere out of sight first to make sure they don’t discolor tent tops or tent sidewalls. Would you rather use the more natural options? Read on to learn how to remove rust from a party tent’s fabric and metal hardware.
Removing Rust from Party Tent Vinyl
Rust stains on vinyl fabric is inarguably the most noticeable; it really stands out on white tent tops and sidewalls. But when you find these rust stains, don’t panic! They’re remarkably easy to remove.
All you need for removing rust from vinyl fabric is some lemon juice, some cool water, a rag, and maybe some table salt. And like chemical cleaners, you’ll want to test the lemon juice in a less visible area first.
First, clean the area like you normally would (here’s a blog explaining how to clean a party tent). Next, simply squirt a healthy dose of lemon juice on the stained fabric. Let it soak for about 10 minutes or so. Next, pat down the affected area, being careful not to rub the material if it can be helped. Last but not least, thoroughly rinse the lemon juice away with your cool water. Any remaining rust should rinse away with the water.
If the stain isn’t gone, repeat the process and use a small amount of table salt. Again, let it sit for about 10 minutes, then pat it down, and then rinse it away. The rust stain should be gone now. If it’s still not going anywhere, you may need to try one of those heavier commercial cleaners we mentioned earlier.
How to Remove Rust from Metal Party Tent Hardware
Metal hardware like tent poles, tent stakes, and tools take a little longer when you aren’t using heavy duty cleaners, but the work is similarly easy and the results are usually just as good.
For this, you’ll need some white vinegar, water, and either a steel wool pad or a bristle brush. You’ll also want a dry towel or rag, or some paper towels. You’ll also want to make sure you can afford having your party tent hardware out of commission for a full day.
Simply soak the affected area in the white vinegar for about 20 to 24 hours, then use your brush or pad to scrub away at the rust. Oftentimes this will come right off—sometimes you can even do it with a paper towel—but other times you may need to apply a little elbow grease and scrub the rust away.
Once the rust is removed, you may want to clean the full hardware with dish soap and water, but this isn’t usually necessary. When you’re all done, simply rinse the hardware thoroughly with clean warm water, then use a towel or a rag to dry it.
Some people argue you can easily use lemon and salt on metal hardware, eliminating the wait time with the white vinegar method. Many people feel this has mixed results, though. It’s worth a try if you’re already using lemon and table salt to clean your tent top, but if it doesn’t work, we suggest trying the more time consuming white vinegar method.
Knowing how to remove rust from your party tent's vinyl and metal components will save you a lot of grief in the future, especially as your equipment gets older. And if your equipment is a little too far gone for these methods to work, please don't hesitate to give us a call at 1-716-832-8368!