How to Remove Rust From Sandstone

Sandstone, a natural stone commonly used in tiles and flooring, adds classic appeal to your home. While sandstone itself doesn't rust, rust can transfer from a metal object to your sandstone surface. Because sandstone is porous by nature the rust stain can go from being a surface stain to one that's more ingrained. Remove the rust stain from your sandstone surface by drawing it out of the stone.

Dampen and put a couple drops of mild dishwashing detergent on a sponge. Wipe your sandstone surface at the site of the rust stain. This may be enough to remove the stain if it's fresh and only on the surface; continue to the next step if the rust stain remains.

Dampen the site of the rust stain with distilled water to prepare it for the stain-removing poultice.

Mix diatomaceous earth with enough commercial rust remover to make a thick paste the consistency of peanut butter. Stir the two ingredients in a bowl until mixed well.

Apply the poultice to the rust stain on your sandstone surface with a plastic scraper. Spread the paste 1/2 inch thick over the stain, ensuring that you cover the entire stain.

Set a piece of cling film on top of the poultice to make sure it dries slowly.

Lift the poultice with the plastic scraper and remove it from your sandstone surface. Throw the poultice materials away in the trash. Wash your sandstone surface with the sponge dampened with water before drying it with a clean cloth.


Remove rusty items from sandstone or any other surface as soon as you notice them. Tend to a rust stain quickly, before it has the chance to transfer to another surface.


Abrasive cleaners are ineffective for removing rust and will scratch the sandstone surface. Commercial rust removers alone will only clean rust off the surface. The solution must be mixed into a poultice in order to draw the rust out of the stone.

Things You'll Need

  • Sponge
  • Dishwashing detergent
  • Distilled water
  • Bowl
  • Diatomaceous earth
  • Commercial rust removing liquid
  • Spoon
  • Plastic scraper
  • Cling film
  • Clean cloth
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About the Author

Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.