Cleaning metal heat registers? (baseboard type)

netarcFebruary 23, 2006

I realized recently that our the grilles in our baseboard type registers are *filthy* ... seems as if they've not been cleaned in decades, and have dust/dirt residue and other cr*p pretty well embedded into the grilles.

I'm wondering what the best technique is for deep cleaning the register grilles? The vents are metal & painted, and unscrew out of the register surround (see pic below for details).

I pulled one out and tried cleaning it by hand, but using sponge, soap and water only helps a little bit. Would appreciate any suggestions to get these truly clean? Alternatively, any ideas where I could get new, replacement vents?

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You could soak them in hot water with ammonia. It may take the paint off. A good scrub brush may help as well.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2006 at 8:25AM
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Soak in hot water and just plain dish detergent...Joy or Palmolive.....then scrub and rinse.
Linda C

    Bookmark   February 23, 2006 at 11:44AM
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I have the same problem, and over time, mine get rusty too. I spray them with Rustoleum before installing them. That helps a little. But it's a real pain to keep those clean. I try to spray them with furniture wax too, so the dirt won't stick to them.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2006 at 11:45AM
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i take my registers/grates off in the spring and fall and take them outside and give them a good cleaning with the hose. i have found that using a nozzle with a very strong spray (or perhaps a power sprayer if you have one) does an excellent job at cutting through the crud, as well as getting in all of the nooks and crannies. the downside to this method of cleaning would be if the paint were not adhered well to the grate, the pressure of the water could chip it off. but hey, better to have clean paint chipped registers than dirty ooky ones!!

:) jiggreen

    Bookmark   February 24, 2006 at 8:46AM
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What if there is rust? Does something take that off or should you just replace it? I have one that's only 4 years old w/rust just around the edge.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2006 at 9:52AM
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navel jelly remove rust. Then you can prime and paint.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2006 at 11:00AM
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Where Can I purchase the metal register shown in this web site?

    Bookmark   January 6, 2009 at 3:09PM
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I'm looking at restoring 4 of these heat grates. I'm hoping to get them down to the original metallic look. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to do that?

Thank you.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2011 at 11:59AM
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