Cleaning Garage Tools

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated January 18, 2010)

Anyone that has a few tools in their garage can tell you that they are more than a handy item to have around, they are an investment. Since they are an investment, it only stands to reason that you will want to protect your garage tools as much as possible (after all, they are pretty expensive). One of the best ways to keep your garage tools protected is to learn the best way to clean them when they get dirty. Surprisingly, cleaning garage tools is really easy to do. Here's how you can go about getting your garage tools nice and sparkling clean by removing all of that nasty grease.

  • Commercial degreasers. There are plenty of commercial degreasing cleansers available on the market. However, simply purchasing some degreaser and using it on your tools isn't going to be enough. First of all, you need to make sure that the degreaser will not harm your tools. After you have done that, spray a little of the degreaser onto a wet rag and then begin wiping off the grease, dirt, and oil. For any particularly difficult spots, use some really fine (.000 fine) steel wool and rub it off. Once clean, be sure to treat the tools with a protector, such as navel jelly.
  • Mineral spirits. A really simple method for cleaning hand tools is to use some mineral spirits. Place some mineral spirits into a cheap disposable plastic pan, and then lay the dirty tools into the pan for about an hour. After they have soaked, remove the tools and wipe them clean with some clean cotton rags. If you find any particularly difficult spots, or even some rust, then use some fine (.000) steel wool to buff it to an acceptable shine.
  • Talc. Talc, a powder that you can purchase at most home improvement and department stores, is perfect for helping to get your tools clean. Simply put some of the talc onto the dirty tools, and use a clean rag to wipe them clean. Repeat this as often as necessary to get the tools clean.
  • Kerosene. Perhaps the single best method, though a tad dangerous, for cleaning dirty tools is to use some kerosene. Simply place a little kerosene onto a rag, and begin wiping away the dirt and grime found on your tools. You will be surprised at how easy it is to actually get the tools clean when you use this method. However, keep in mind that you should only use this method in a well ventilated area, and that you don't have any open flames anywhere nearby when you are cleaning. Since the rags will be flammable after you have done your cleaning, be sure to properly dispose of them when you are finished.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

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