Remove Rust and Dust from a Baseboard Heating Unit's Interior Components

A baseboard heating unit that has rusted metal and dust stuck on some of its interior components can block warm air from flowing freely into your home and cause your energy bill to rise. Clean the inside of the unit by completing the following steps. By your doing so, the unit will be ready for use this winter and will assist with keeping the inside of your home at a comfortable temperature.


  • feather duster
  • handheld scrub brush
  • vacuum cleaner hose
  • container of naval jelly
  • thin paintbrush
  • metal cleaner
  • sponge
  • water
  • lint-free towels
  • rust-inhibiting spray

Remove Dust and Apply Naval Jelly

Turn off the heating unit. Lift the cover to each section of the baseboard heating unit. Use a feather duster to remove loose dust from the inside of each one. If there is dust wedged between the metal fins that run across the middle of each heating section, rapidly move a handheld scrub brush back and forth over the dirty metal to assist with dislodging foreign materials.

Suck up loose dirt with a vacuum-cleaner hose. Coat a thin paintbrush with naval jelly. Brush an even amount of jelly onto each rusted surface. The rust will begin to loosen after the jelly penetrates for a few minutes.

Eliminate Rust and Clean the Metal

Wipe the rusted surfaces with a damp sponge. Rinse the sponge out as it becomes covered with rust pieces. Apply a metal cleaning agent to a clean sponge when finished. Clean all of the interior metal with the sponge. Rinse the sponge out with water and move the sponge over the same surfaces to remove any traces of the cleaning agent. Dry the interior components with a lint-free towel.

Apply an Inhibitor to Metal Surfaces

A rust inhibitor will prevent rust from forming on metal surfaces. Spray an even coat of a rust-inhibiting material across the metal that is inside of each heating section. Wait for the inhibitor to dry thoroughly before securing the cover to each section of the unit.

Turn on the heating unit and place your hands near the vent covers to determine if a steady supply of warm air is blowing through each one. In order to prevent dust buildup inside of the unit, inspect the inside of each section on occasion. Dust the metal surfaces and use a vacuum-cleaner hose when needed. These steps will assist with keeping the unit in operable order.

If you need help, consult a company such as Rechtin Tom Heating Air Conditioning