How to Protect Woodworking Tools from Rust

Woodworking is considered an esteemed and timeless skill that has been around for hundreds of years. Woodworking projects require a lot of practice, experience, skills, and the best tools to get the job done.

Woodworking tools are an excellent long-term investment which is why you need to give them the adequate amount of care and attention required to maintain their efficiency and durability. You need to know when and how to maintain your woodworking tools.

One of the things you need to protect your woodworking tools from is rust. Failure to protect woodworking tools from rust may render them useless. However, you need not worry. We have just the tips and tricks you can use to protect your woodworking tools from rust. Read on to find out.

How to Protect Woodworking Tools from Rust in 5 Steps

The best way to eliminate rust from your woodworking tools is to prevent it from getting started in the first place, and this would save you a lot of continuous effort required to remove rust. Here are some straightforward ways to avoid rust from damaging your woodworking tools.

1. Applying a Protective Coating to Your Woodworking Tools

One of the first and most effective lines of defense when it comes to protecting your woodworking tools from rust is applying a protective layer or coating, which provides an added layer of protection to the tools.

There may still be a little bit of rust on your tools, but it will only damage the protective coating or keep your tools rust-free. You can easily re-do these protective layers from time to time.

Oil serves as one of the most affordable protecting layers that you can add to your woodworking tools. Oil helps to lubricate the metal parts and also prevents the tools from rusting. All you need do is apply a thin layer of mineral oil (non-oxidizing) or regular motor oil on your woodworking tools and use a clean rag to wipe the excess oil using a clean rag.

However, it would be best if you kept in mind that oil attracts dust, so even after applying the protective layer of oil, you will still have to keep your woodworking tools clean for protection.

Another protective layer for your woodworking tools is butcher wax which will allow your tools to be metal-free for a long time. You can easily find it online or at any of your nearby hardware or automotive stores.

Apply the wax liberally on the metal surfaces of your woodworking tools. Allow it to dry, and then wipe the excess off.

2. Controlling the Moisture and Humidity Levels Where the Tools Are Stored

Another effective way to prevent rust on your woodworking tools is by reducing the moisture level and controlling humidity. These are the best things you can do for your tools, mainly if you are located in a particularly humid climate, which prevents your space from getting adequate airflow. Investing in a dehumidifier or a fan would help control humidity and avoid rust.

Moisture is one of the critical factors that cause rust. So, instead of placing or storing your tools where moisture levels are high, like in the basement or a non-insulated garage, pick a space that is cool dry.

Also, avoid leaving your woodworking tools sitting out. Either store them in large containers or wrap plastic around them for protection to prevent the rust from gaining traction.

Another option to prevent rust is placing silica gel in your woodworking toolbox or wherever they are stored. These gel packs work to absorb moisture and are often found in small and compact white packaging inside shoe boxes.

This method is relatively simple as you simply have to toss the gel pack in the toolbox and forget about rust damaging your tools. However, it is essential to remember that these gel packs need to be replaced from time to time.

3. Frequently Use Your Woodworking Tools

Don’t let your tools sit in a box for years. They deserve your care and attention. This is the easiest and simplest way to prevent rust.

Using your tools frequently will help prevent the moisture or dust from collecting on your woodworking tools which is one of the more significant factors contributing to rust.

4. Keeping Your Tools Clean and Dry

One of the main issues for rust on tools is moisture. Frequent use of power tools like drills and saws often leads to the sawdust getting deposited on all the tools. This becomes an issue as the sawdust collects moisture.

This problem is an easy one to solve. All you have to do is ensure that your tools are protected from the sawdust. This can be done by purchasing an effective dust collector so that the dust can be contained easily.

Cleaning the tools after each use is an excellent habit to develop as it will prevent the collection of dust and moisture. This could be made easier if all the power tools were kept together but away from all the other tools.

5. Using a Rust Inhibiting Vapor

Another effective solution to the rusting issue is the use of rust-inhibiting vapors or RIVs. RIVs are usually available in the form of a spray used to coat metal surfaces with particles that prevent rust by bonding with the metals. These particles prevent the moisture from reaching the surface to they are applied.

This method of rust prevention requires more effort, but it is one of the best methods as it is suitable for all environments, including incredibly moist ones. However, this method includes frequent cleaning and recoating of tools using the RIVs.

Our Final Thoughts

Try these simple habits that prevent your tools from rusting and help you keep your workstation clean and organized. There is a rust prevention method available for everyone regardless of their environment, frequency of work, or type of woodwork tools.

So, follow the techniques we have put together for you and take good care of woodworking tools to ensure their durability and preserve the art of woodworking! Good luck and happy woodworking!

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