Caring For Garden Tools- Tips to Clean and Sharpen Garden Tools
Love to garden? Over the last couple of years, gardening has become very popular, and today it is very hard to find a backyard that does not have at least a pot, patch or container that has some plants growing. However, most people do not take care of their gardening tools as they care for their plants. Hoes, trowels, shovels, spades among other gardening tools take a lot of abuse during land preparation and maintenance and if you take better care of these tools, they will work better and last longer.
After a full season of keeping your yard looking great, winter is the best time to keep the gardening tools in shape waiting for spring. Any garden tool that has screws, nuts, bolts, chains or blades will need some cleaning and sharpening. Some of these tools include hedge shears, runners, axes, loppers, reel mowers, pruners and much more. Read on to find five simple and easy tips to help you clean and sharpen your garden tools.
1. Cleaning the tools
The first step is to give your garden tools a good scrub to remove any mud from the handles as well as the blade. After washing the tools, use an old towel to dry them. You can keep them under the sun or set them aside overnight so that they can dry completely.
2. Clear the rust
Rust is one of the factors that lender a garden tool useless within a few days of use. To keep the tool in top condition, use a steel wool or wire brush to scrub the rust that may have accumulated on the metal surface. To make the work simple, you can use a rotary wire brush accessory chuckled in a drill. Although removing rust is very crucial, ensure you remove it without grinding the metal too hard as this would make the blade thinner and weaker.
3. Replace or sand the handles
If any of the handles is broken or worn out, you need to replace it. You can also use sandpaper to remove splinters and any deteriorated finish. Sandpaper will also help you to remove any remaining rust from crevices and surfaces. After smoothing, the tools wipe down each tool well removing any metal or wood sanding dust.
4. Sharpening the garden tools
Sharpening the tools is crucial to keep the tool functioning well. Use a metal file to sharpen the edges of the tools well. Here you need to take your time and sharpen the edges well to smooth out all the nicks and remove the burrs to give the tool a nice clean edge. For a finer and sharper edge on cutting tools such as axes or clippers, you need to follow up with a sharpening stone that is lubricated with oil.
5. Oil the tools
Use an old piece of cloth to apply lubricating oil on the metal blade and handles. Oiling the tool will prevent rusting on the metal surface and prevent the wooden handles from absorbing moisture.
Everyday maintenance tips
At the end of every gardening, day take some time to do the following maintenance.
• Rinse off the soil and mud with a garden hose
• Scrub the stubborn soil with a scrub brush
• Wipe the tools with a rag
• Hang the tools
• Periodically wipe the tools with light coat of oil
Taking care of the garden tool does take a little bit of effort, but it is definitely worth it. Your tools will remain in top condition and help you with your gardening tasks for many years to come.
My name is Dianne and I am passionate about all things related to gardening. I blog about indoor and outdoor planting as well as offering useful information about the best gardening products.