How to clean your iron – 10 proven ways

Over time, irons deteriorate: soot forms on the soleplate, and traces of limescale build up in the water tank, which is used in almost all modern models to steam clothes without using a spray gun.

It is possible to avoid such problems, but it is also desirable to know how to get rid of them with the help of improvised or professional means. In fact this task is not easy, because the soles of irons are made of different materials, and each requires its own approach. For example, ceramic and Teflon are undesirable to scratch, otherwise the device can not be used in the future.

The Expertology editors have prepared an overview including the tried and tested ways to combat limescale and carbon deposits that will keep your iron looking its best and keep it looking its best.

How to clean an iron at home

Clean the caked-on stains from the soles

Burns usually appear when the wrong mode is selected. At first it is a yellow plaque, later becoming dark brown and black. It causes the soleplate to become rough, sliding poorly over fabrics, spoiling them. It is recommended to remove the plaque immediately before it darkens, because it is much easier to do than to clean the already old.

For Teflon and Ceramic


  1. Stir table vinegar in a glass of water in equal proportions. Resort to the help of ammonia, adding it to the mixture in the same proportion. This will get rid of stale grease.

  2. Dip a rag in the solution and work on the sole without heating it. Get rid of heavy plaque by leaving a cloth soaked in the mixture on the surface for about two to three hours, after which you only need to remove it with a soft sponge.

  3. Work the holes with the cotton swabs in the same way.

Laundry soap

  1. Warmed to a minimum, gently rub the product on the sole.

  2. Wait until it begins to soften, dissolving the burn.

  3. Wipe the cleaned surface with a damp sponge, and afterwards, with a dry rag.

  4. Do the same with the steam holes, using cotton swabs.

Paraffin candle

  1. Heat appliance at lowest setting.

  2. Make a bed of several layers of paper, so the dripping candle won’t stain anything.

  3. Using a cotton cloth, sweep the candle over the surface in a circular motion.

  4. Don’t let melted wax get into the holes.

  5. Carefully remove any residual wax.

How to clean an iron at home

Hydrogen peroxide

  1. Squeeze out the cloth soaked in 3% hydrogen peroxide solution.

  2. Carefully, with effort, treat the soiled surface.

  3. Clean the holes in the sole of the iron the same way. A cotton swab will do the trick.


  1. This method is ideal for removing traces of plastic or burned synthetics.

  2. Put a few drops of acetone or the liquid used to remove nail polish on the rag.

  3. Work on encrusted areas.

  4. Do not touch anything that has plastic or rubber wax on it so as not to damage its appearance.

Special pencil

  1. You can find quite a few special pencils for cleaning the soles on the market. It will also help clean the steam holes.

  2. Fill a container with water.

  3. Turn the appliance on and let it heat up.

  4. Spread the product over the entire surface, so it gets into the holes.

  5. Start ironing a piece of unnecessary cloth, letting the steam out so that the limescale accumulated in the holes.

  6. For all surfaces other than Teflon and ceramic


  1. Add two teaspoons of baking soda to water or 9% vinegar to make a smooth paste.

  2. Spread it on a lightly heated surface and gently wipe with a rag.

  3. Moisten a cloth with a solution of water and baking soda and go over the cooled sole.

  4. Remove stains with a soft, damp sponge.


  1. Turn the appliance on and heat it up as much as possible.

  2. Cover a sheet of foil or cotton towel with a thin layer of salt.

  3. With the iron down and pressed down, slowly sweep a few times in different directions until the stain comes off.


  1. Lightly heat the appliance by setting the temperature to the lowest setting.

  2. Make a pouch by putting salt in a thin cotton cloth or in gauze folded threefold in advance.

  3. Work the surface by brushing it in a circular motion.

How to clean an iron at home


  1. Warm the sole lightly.

  2. Squeeze out of the tube a little of the product and pass it over the surface in a circular motion, armed with a soft rag.

  3. Scrub the burn with classic toothpaste, avoiding gel and other options.

How to prevent scaling

  1. Set the temperature corresponding to the fabric you’re going to iron.

  2. For those that require gentle care, iron with damp gauze.

  3. When you have finished ironing, use a soft cloth to mop the surface.

Descale the inside of the tank

Scale deposits appear if the container is filled with tap water instead of distilled water. Then both the container and the steam holes become clogged with mineral deposits, resulting in dirty droplets that stain the ironing process.


  1. Pour a third of the water into the container with the diluted vinegar.

  2. Holding the appliance vertically, turn on the maximum heat. Wait five to ten minutes for the iron to automatically turn on and off several times.

  3. Turn the appliance horizontally with the pan underneath.

  4. Start releasing streams of steam.

  5. Continue the procedure until the drops stop falling.

  6. Rinse the reservoir and fill it with distilled water.

  7. Heat the appliance again to the maximum and hold it horizontally and let the steam flow out.

  8. Empty the canister and wipe the surface with a clean rag and the holes with cotton swabs.

“Antiscale” and “Cil”
  • t”
    1. Dissolve half a tablespoon of Antiscale in a glass of water.

    2. Fill the container with the mixture.

    3. Heat the appliance as much as possible and let it cool completely.

    4. Drain the solution and rinse the container.

    5. Clamp the iron with the soleplate upward.

    6. Heat the instrument to the maximum.

    7. Pour in “Cil

    8. t” into the holes, using a dropper or syringe.
    9. Let eight to ten minutes for the scale to dissolve.

    10. Use a cloth to remove the dirt from the holes.

    11. Start the self-cleaning cycle.


    Citric acid

    1. Dissolve no more than twenty-five grams of citric acid in a glass of water so that it is clear.

    2. Heat the iron to the maximum and pour the mixture into the container.

    3. Wait five to ten minutes.

    4. Hold the appliance horizontally over any tank, letting off steam while the rusty water and scale drips off.

    5. Drain the solution from the tank and fill it with pure distilled water.

    6. After heating the iron, wait another five to ten minutes.

    7. Let off steam to remove scale and vinegar residues.

    8. Wipe the soleplate and holes with a rag or cloth.

    Mineral water

    1. Pour the normal mineral water into a container.

    2. Heat the iron as high as possible.

    3. Holding the appliance horizontally over any container, let out steam.

    4. Drain the mineral water by filling the container with distilled water.

    5. Heat the iron again to the maximum and let the steam out holding it horizontally.

    6. Wipe the soleplate and steam outlet holes with a rag and cotton swabs, respectively.

    Hot Tub

    1. Take two wooden slats and place them on a baking tray.

    2. Sprinkle any descaling agent on the bottom, following the dosage instructions.

    3. Fill the tray with water so that its level reaches the plastic parts of the iron body.

    4. Place the instrument on the racks with the sole plate pointing downwards.

    5. Heat a baking tray on a low heat, but not in the oven, but on the stove.

    6. Wipe first with a damp cloth, then with a dry rag.


    If your appliance has a self-cleaning function, then be sure to use it to remove limescale. Do not forget to read the instructions before you start.

    The steps are usually similar.

    1. Fill the bucket as much as possible.

    2. Put the iron on the highest temperature setting.

    3. Allow the appliance to warm up and cool down several times. Two or three on and off will be enough.

    4. Set the tank and hold the iron over it soleplate downward.

    5. Activate the self-cleaning function to allow the steam to blow all limescale and dirt out of the holes.

    6. Clean the cooled soleplate with a clean rag and use cotton swabs for the holes.

    7. Rinse the water tank thoroughly.

    How to prevent limescale?

    1. Follow a number of simple rules:

    2. Only fill the tank with distilled or bottled water.

    3. Iron with the iron nose up both when ironing and afterwards.

    4. Drain and rinse your coat after ironing.

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