Cleaning the sole plate of your iron on a regular basis is essential to your iron's efficiency and having clean, well-pressed clothes. The sole plate is the plate at the bottom of the iron that comes into contact with your clothes during the ironing process. If your iron drags or is leaving behind marks and stains on your clothing, the sole plate needs cleaning. You can prepare a homemade sole plate cleaner with common household ingredients.
Unplug the iron from the electrical socket. Make sure the iron is cold before attempting to clean its sole plate.
Fill a bucket with 1 gallon of water and 1/4 cup liquid dish soap or laundry detergent. Mix well to create suds.
Dip a nylon mesh pad or sponge into the soapy water and wipe the iron's sole plate. Massage a dab of toothpaste into the sole plate to remove any stubborn mineral deposits. Dampen a clean cloth with water and remove any remaining residue from the sole plate.
Heat 1/2 cup of white vinegar and 1/2 cup of salt in a small pan until the salt dissolves, which will remove scorch marks and other tough stains from the sole plate. Wet a sponge with the mixture and wipe the iron's sole plate until all of the marks are removed.
To remove starch build-up, dip a clean cloth into baking soda and rub it over the sole plate.
Avoid using salt to clean the sole plate if it's made out of Teflon. Don't use scouring pads on the sole plate, since they can scratch the iron.