Cleaning, Painting, and Maintaining Your Historic Home's Wrought Iron Gate and Fence

If you recently purchased a historic home that has a wrought iron fence and gate in the yard, then it is important that you know how to properly clean, paint, and maintain them. Well-maintained wrought iron fencing will last for centuries, while wrought iron that is not properly maintained will rust in the elements and need professional repairs or restoration in just a few years time.

To keep your ornamental gate and fence looking fantastic and to protect them from the weather, here is all of the information that you need:

Clean Your Wrought Iron Fence Correctly

Your wrought iron fence and its gate need to be cleaned on a regular basis to remove any built up dirt or grime. The easiest way to clean them is to spray them off with your garden hose. If your gate has a lot of small areas that are not coming clean by just spraying them, then you can use a toothbrush to get down into the tight areas and remove the dirt.

It is important to note that you should never use a pressure washer on ornamental iron because it can cause damage to the metal and, if the fence is painted, then it will remove the paint. Instead, a solution of liquid dish soap and hot water can be used if necessary.

Maintain Your Wrought Iron Gate and Fence Properly

As you are cleaning off your fence and gate, take a minute to look at each piece of iron and make sure that everything is still welded together and there is no visible damage. If you find any damage, then you will need to have it professionally repaired. It is vital that you have repairs made as soon as possible so the damaged areas of the fence do not develop a problem with rust.

Repaint Your Wrought Iron Fence and Gate When Necessary Using the Correct Procedure

In addition to regularly inspecting and cleaning your wrought iron gate and fence, you also need to repaint them when their existing paint starts to peel from age. You can strip the existing paint off of the fence using a wire brush. Once the old paint has been removed, then wash the fence with soap and water, let it completely dry, and then paint it with a paint formulated specifically for use on ornamental iron. Finally, once the new paint is dry, then you should apply a layer of clear coat over the top. The clear coat layer will provide extra protection for the fence and will help the new paint job to last longer. 

For more information about maintaining the wrought iron ornamental fence and gate on your historic home, check out professional sites like