cleaning bricklaying and masonry tools

How to Keep your Bricklaying and Masonry Tools Clean

One thing true as a tradesman, there are specific tools and equipment you need to carry out your work and keeping them clean is vital.
A tradesman needs top quality tools that are reliable and that are also built to last.


To make your tools survive the test of time and earn you a crust, you have to keep them clean and look after them and as the saying goes, “look after your tools, and they will look after you.”


So here we look at the best ways to keep your tools clean.

Looking after Tools

“Look after your tools and they will look after you”

Looking after your tools is a vital part of prolonging the life of any tool and machinery and there should be regular maintenance checks in order to maintain performance and keep your tools in working order.

If you invest hard earned money into good quality tools you want them to last.

Regular maintenance on your tools will not only save you time and also delays but it will also save you money in the long run.

Simple ways to clean your Bricklaying Tools

One of the most simple ways to clean your tools is just to give them a rub down with water and then cleaned with a dry cloth after that make sure there fully dry to prevent rust and corrosion.

if tools are made of wood or a wooden handle trowel, for instance, the best way is to give it a clean with warm water and then apply linseed oil to the wood.

linseed oil sinks deep into the wood grain and the wood soaks it up like a sponge.

The linseed oil will deeply nourish the wood and provide a flexible protection that is waterproof and smooth to touch, therefor prolonging the handles life.

Cleaning Bricklayers Trowels after use

You should always keep your trowel clean throughout the day to stop snots and smears apearing on your masonry work.

In order to do that you need to clean your trowel regularly shaking of the excess cement.

We recommend giving it a clean with a cocoa brush regulary and at the end of the day giving it a good rub with an hessian rag.

To keep your trowels rust free we recommend giving them a light spray with wd40 and giving them a light rub with the hessian rag.

Another method to keep your trowel clean daily is give it a good few dips into the sand bag and rub off this will make the cement become dry and make it easy to rub clean.

If there is a build up of cement on the trowel you can rub it on a rough surface like a concrete floor.

It’s been known for people to rub the trowel on a concrete floor with there feet to get the cement off the bottom of the trowel.

The abrasiveness of the concrete and the pressure from your body weight removes hardened cement and mortar that has built up, we like to call it the ski method.

Cleaning Masonry Tools

Cleaning all the bits and pieces in your tool bucket or box is vital.

It can be as easy as cleaning them with a bucket of soapy water and patting them dry to stop rust build up.

If it is winter time we advise in keeping your tools in a toolbox as the outside elements can dampen your tools causing rust which can also dampen your day.

keeping your spirit level clean is important because you don’t want cement building up that may give you a poor reading making your work out of level and if its not clean it can also tarnish your work.

The best way to keep spirit levels clean is giving them a wipe every hour or so taking off the cement and dirt and at the end of the day give them a good rub down with a cocoa brush and water.

Getting Rust off Tools

removing rust

If it comes to a point where tools have become rusty from not maintaining them or they have been stored incorrectly then there are ways to clean the rust off.

to get the rust off you can scrub the surface with wire wool the abrasiveness of the wool will remove the rust try not to rub too rigorous as it could damage and score the tool.

Vinegar rust removal

clean tools with vinegar

You can use vinegar to remove rust, sit your tools in some vinegar over night and it will remove the rust, the acidity in the vinegar will work away on any rust that is left an the next day the Rust should have been removed

Removing rust with a power tool.

its possible t remove rust with a power tool and buff the rust off the tool.

Grind the rust to the base metal with an alluminium oxide grinding stone.

use the rotary tool to sand away the rust living your tool rust free.

Removing rust with wd-40

cleaning tools with wd40

When rust builds up on your hand tools it’s necessary to take action straight away and remove the rust another method is to remove the rust with wd-40.

Spray the rusted area on the tool and let the wd-40 soak into the tool for at least 10 minutes.

After you have left it for 10 minutes wipe the tool with wire wool or a wire brush, the rust that has built up should start to break up and be removed from the tool.

Repeat until all of the rust is removed.

Cleaning Tools with Baking soda

remove rust with baking soda

It’s possible to remove rust from your tools with baking soda.

Mix water and baking soda so it forms a thick paste.

Put the paste on the tool where the rust is and leave it on for around an hour.

after you have left it on for around an hour you want to start to rub the top with wire wool or a wire brush and the rust will start to be removed.

Once all the rust is removed give it a clean with cold water and pat dry.

Lemon and salt method

cleaning tools with lemon and salt

The lemon and salt method is something you can do easily with household items.

The acidity in the lemon juice should start to break up the rust.

Put salt on the tool and add lemon juice and leave the mixture on the tool for a few hours.

Once the tool has been left for a few hours you want to get some wire wool or a wire brush and work away scrubbing the tool and working away the rust and pat dry.

Thanks for reading and hope it has given you some good information on how to keep you bricklaying and masonry tools clean.

Best Spirit levels for Bricklayers and Masons

bricklayers spirit level

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