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Re: How can I prevent my iron from leaving white residue...
White residue is caused by lime in your tap water.perfectly safe to drink,but when boiled [as in making steam] the lime is left behind. over timeit builds up in the 'tank' buy a gallon of distilled water from the grocerery-about $1 mix water with white vinegar,50/50 and 'steam it out' once or twice to remove deposits in the resevior.steam it out again w/pure distilled water.try it out on your husbands clothes before you iron your delicates again!!
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To descale make a solution of 3 parts distilled water to one part white vinegar, about a teacup full and pour into the irons water reservoir. Switch the iron on and set it on to the highest steam setting. Place a clean tea towel or similar on the ironing board and steam-clean it with the iron for a few minutes. The vinegar/distilled water solution will break down and expel the lime scale. Turn off the iron (unplug). Pour out the water and vinegar solution. Pour clean distilled water into the iron reservoir and steam-clean a new clean cloth for a few minutes. this will remove any residual vinegar etc. Turn off and unplug the iron and pour out the remaining water. Descale completed.
To clean the base (soleplate) first, make sure your iron is completely cool before cleaning.
There are a number of things to remove various stains. For general stains rub the bottom of the iron with table salt and a soft damp cloth. For marks left by limescale (a powderey white) use undiluted white vinegar on a soft cloth. Some stubborn stains can be removed with a paste made from baking soda and water. What ever you use make sure you rinse and wipe the soleplate dry before using again. Never under any circumstances use a metal scouring pad or wire wool type cleaner, this will scratch, mark, and probably damage the soleplate beyond repair.
To eliminate mineral deposits and prevent corrosion on your steam iron, give it an occasional cleaning by filling the reservoir with undiluted white vinegar. Place the iron in an upright position, switch on the steam setting, and let the vinegar steam through it for 5-10 minutes. Then refill the chamber with clean water and repeat. Finally, give the water chamber a good rinsing with cold, clean water. -From Reader's Digest 150+ Household Uses for Vinegar
the brown liquid is rust from leaving the water in the iron. Always dump the water out when you are done ironing. You need to run a descaler through it. you can purchase descaler online. The shutting off and on could be a loose wire.
Are you in a hard water or soft water area, maybe you could try using filtered water in your iron. To clear out the scale from the jets try adding a little white vinegar to the water and steaming it through, or a little "Calgon" diluted in water. Then perform a test iron on some dark fabric untill the scale has been removed.
Hey, You have a "Mildew" issue. Just like leaving clothes in the washer too long before putting them into the dryer. If you read your iron's manual, it is recommended to use "Distilled" water...not tap water. Tap water has impurities...Distilled water does not. Here's the fix...MAKE SURE YOU ARE HOME WHEN YOU DO THIS! Get distilled water (From Grocery Store) Mix 1/2 cup distilled water with 1/2 cup vinegar. Put this into your iron and leave it on. To help it along, push the "Steam" button frequently. You can do this several times...the acid in the vinegar will clean out the residue. Once this is done, fill the iron with water, add a couple of drops of lemon juice and you'll be good to go. I know this to be fact...just did it myself : )
This will probably just need de-scaling. Buy some descaler and there should be instructions on the packet of how to de-scale an iron. Usually by warming the iron slightly, switching off, emptying out the water and then adding the diluted de-scaler to the iron and leaving it in an almost horizontal but raised position in a bowl or something so that some of the de-scaler will drain through. Then emptying out, re-filling with water and then iron something that you don't mind getting marked while any residue get's flushed out.
Probably not sand but crystalized minerals from tap water. Heat up the iron then unplug it and add white vinegar. Shake it up and pour it out of the fill hole. Repeat if necessary. Then rinse it out with distilled or filtered water. Before using on clothes, fill with water and steam iron an old towel to get the vinegar smell out. Use only filtered or distilled water to prevent this happening again.
The rust spot are probably caused by iron in your tap water. I would suggest you put a solution of half vinegar and half water into the water chamber and leave in the iron overnight.
Then switch it on to steam and holding the iron over the sink or over an old towel, the dirt (residue) comes out of the holes on the soleplate. Sometimes if the iron is badly scaled you might need to repeat the descaling.
Once complete, fill again with clean water and steam away, to flush any of the remaining vinegar out of the iron.
Depending on how often you use your iron and how much iron is in your water, you might consider performing this flush process every 2 or 3 months. It will help extend the life of your iron.
Another option is to use distilled water in your iron. Distilled water has all the minerals removed.