Chrome Towel Rail

How to Clean a Chrome Towel Rail

When chrome towel rails are clean and polished, they can really stand out in your bathroom. This has made them a popular style choice in many homes.

But as anyone with chrome towel rails, taps, or shower heads knows, keeping them in perfect condition can be a challenge!

Over time, dust, fingerprints, limescale and general grime will build up on your towel rail, ruining its sleek, modern look.

Chrome towel rails need to be cleaned regularly to keep them looking their best. However, chrome is susceptible to corrosion, so you need to be careful when cleaning to avoid damage.

Thankfully, we have all the information you need to learn how to clean a chrome towel rail safely.

Whether you are doing a weekly clean or need to remove old rust stains, we hope our methods will leave your towel rail looking as good as new.

When cleaning a chrome towel rail, you need to be careful else you may damage the shiny exterior.

Scouring powder, steel wool, and cleaners containing harsh chemicals are all definite no-goes for chrome. Here is a safe and effective method you can try instead.


1. Turn Off the Heating

turn off heated tower rail

In today’s day and age, many towel rails also act as radiators to keep your towels warm and dry between washes.

If this applies to your towel rail, turn off the heat and let the metal cool down before you commence cleaning.

While it may seem tempting to skip this step, we highly advise against it. You may have to wait for the rails to cool down, but leaving on the heating comes with the risk of burns and could interfere with the cleaning process.


2. Remove Dust & Debris

cleaning towel rail with duster

Before adding any cleaning solution to your towel rail, take a duster and remove any fingerprints and dust that have formed on the rails.

These are the two things that primarily dull the shine of the chrome and make the towel rail look so dirty.

Although you can technically skip this step, adding a liquid cleaner before this stage will cause the dust to clump together and stick to both the rails and your cleaning cloth.

Dusting these away before using your cleaner makes the whole cleaning process much more manageable.


3. Wipe Down Using a Cleaning Solution

wiping chrome towel rail with white vinegar

With your chrome towel rail dust-free, it is time to apply a cleaning solution.

White vinegar is your best option. The acidity of this liquid makes it highly effective at breaking down any limescale deposits that may have formed on the chrome.

To use white vinegar on your towel rail, mix a 50:50 solution of vinegar and water and use a microfibre cloth to wipe it all over the towel rail.

If you don’t have access to white vinegar, soapy water or a mixture of lemon juice and bicarbonate of soda will also do the job.

You can use them in exactly the same way as you did the vinegar solution. Alternatively, some people rub half a lemon directly onto the towel rails instead.


4. Scrub and Rinse with Water

clean towel rail with toothbrush and microfibre cloth

Once you have wiped your cleaning solution over every inch of your towel rail, we recommend going in with a toothbrush.

An old toothbrush can work wonders at removing any last traces of grime from hard-to-reach places, such as corners or bolts.

After scrubbing, you can rinse off the cleaner using water. Dampen your microfibre cloth and wipe your towel rail all over.

Be as thorough with rinsing as you are when applying the cleaner; any remaining residue can impact the final shine.


4. Dry and Buff the Towel Rail

wiping chrome towel rail

Once you’ve removed all the marks on the surface of your towel rail, you need to dry and buff it so that it is left shiny.

Use a dry microfibre cloth to wipe the surface and dry the rails. This helps to remove any smudges or drips marks that have been left behind during cleaning.

The last step is to buff the chrome using another dry part of the cloth. For the best results, polish the rails using a circular motion. This will give you the sparkling shine that makes your towel rail look as good as new!


How to Get Rust off a Chrome Towel Rail

Rust can build up on the rails over time if you don’t keep up your proper maintenance or if your bathroom is often filled with condensation.

Regular cleaning using the above method and an extractor fan can prevent this from happening. However, if your towel rail is already covered in rust, you need an effective solution.

Although the above method of cleaning a towel rail will work for day-to-day upkeep, you need a slightly different process for removing rust. Here are two effective options to consider:

remove rust with white vinegar and aluminium foil

White vinegar

Your first option for removing rust is white vinegar. The acidity of this liquid is not only great at removing limescale, but it can also effectively cut through any rust build-up so that it easily comes away. However, you will need to use it slightly differently than when using it for general cleaning.

To remove rust, the vinegar needs to be more saturated than before, so don’t mix it with any water. Instead, you can use a cloth to apply a small amount directly to the rust marks.

Then, lightly rub the white vinegar into the chrome, and you should see immediate results.

Aluminium Foil

Your other option for removing rust is aluminium foil. Rust is made up of a combination of iron and oxygen.

When aluminium foil is rubbed against it, a chemical reaction causes the oxygen to bond with the foil instead of the iron, forming aluminium oxide and removing the rust marks from the chrome.

For this chemical reaction to occur, there needs to be some form of lubrication between the rust and the aluminium foil.

This means that the foil needs to be dipped in water before use. Once wet, simply rub the foil against the rust patches. Just as with white vinegar, you should see immediate results.