Things You'll Need
Be sure to ventilate the room while cleaning with vinegar as the smell can be overwhelming.
You might think that cleaning a cast iron tub would be simple. After all, what could possibly hurt cast iron. However, to keep your cast iron tub looking its best you need to know about a few green and highly effective ingredients that work far better than conventional cleaners when it comes to cleaning out cast iron tubs. In no time, you will have a bright, shiny and beautiful cast iron tub using items that you probably have in your kitchen cabinets already.
Saturate the tub and the sponge with white vinegar. The best way to do this is to pour the vinegar onto the sponge while holding it over the tub. You can apply the vinegar directly to the surface of the cast iron tub with the sponge, replenishing as necessary. This prevents the vinegar from just running down the drain or not covering all of the surfaces including the sides.
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Let the vinegar sit for 5 minutes. This will give it time to lift stains from the surface of the cast iron tub.
Sprinkle baking soda on the sponge and on the tub. This will cause the vinegar to foam. The foaming action will eat away at mineral deposits and make them easier to remove with the sponge. For tough stains, scrub with the scrub brush instead of the sponge.
Rinse out the entire tub with warm water. As you work the water around the tub, continue scrubbing with the scrub brush to remove any leftover dirt, grime or stains. When the water comes off the sides and bottom of the tub clear, then you have completely rinsed the tub. If necessary, you can repeat the vinegar and baking soda routine at this time on hard stains.
Dry out the tub. This prevents spotting and streaking, but is not necessary if you do not have the time or the inclination. However, your tub will stay cleaner and brighter if you wipe it out after cleanings and use.
Carole Ellis began writing in 2004 for the "UGA Research Magazine." Her work has appeared in Growing Edge, Medscape and Doctors' Guide publications. In addition to medical coverage, Carole publishes a real estate newsletter called REJournalOnline and is the news editor for the Bryan Ellis Real Estate Letter. She has a bachelor's degree in English and graduate work in creative writing and plant biology.