How To Prevent Dish Rack From Rusting (Tips and Tricks) 

The dish rack is an essential kitchen utensil that can hold your dishes and pots while washing them. But after some usage, you may notice small brown or dark-colored spots on your dish rack, known as rust. So how to prevent the dish rack from rusting?

To prevent the dish rack from rusting, you need to keep it dry and free from moisture. It is because rust develops when the metal gets along with water and air oxygen. Moreover, keep the coating of the rack intact and watch for defects. Also, be sure to repair any patches on the rack layer.

In this article, we’ll teach some valuable tips for preventing rusting on a dish rack. So keep reading to keep your dish rack safe!  

Tips on How To Prevent Dish Rack From Rusting

As we know, rust is formed on the metal. Most dish racks are made with plastic or stainless steel. However, there are still chances that the rack may get rust over time. 

Follow these tips to prevent these unwanted brown spots on your dish rack- 

1. Clean and Dry the Dish Rack

Most rust comes from a damp situation. So, it’s essential to keep your dish rack clean and dried. 

And you should be regular on this. Clean the rack under running water and wipe it with a dry cloth. Make sure to conquer all the edges and tricky areas. You can use a toothbrush to find a route to clean difficult areas.

Furthermore, don’t keep it soaked. Instead, use a soft cloth or towel to rinse off all the water from the rack. If moisture continuously remains in the dish rack, that invites rust to form. 

2. Make Sure the Coating Is Intact

Most dish racks are made of plastic, metal, or stainless steel. But many have stainless steel coating over metal. These kinds of dish racks are prone to rust. 

When the outer coating gets damaged or torn, the metal part gets exposed to the air. So when water touches the open metal part, it reacts and creates rust. 

Therefore, it’s important to keep the coating intact. If you notice any patches or breaks, be mindful and repair them. You can use paint, vinyl coating, metal tape, etc., methods to seal the patch. 

3. Don’t Overload It

Overloading the dish rack can pose extra pressure on it. It can lead to damage to the protective layer of the rack. Also, you risk the dishes falling or breaking over each other.

4. .Be Careful With Metal and Sharp Utensils

Metal utensils can get rusted over time. And if you keep them in the dish rack, they can leave a rusty strand over your rack. 

Moreover, sharp utensils can damage the protective layer of the rack. For instance, iron grates or sieves may have sharp edges that may cut the coating of the rack. Similarly, you should be careful while placing knives and forks in the dish rack. 

How Can You Clean the Dish Rack To Prevent It From Rusting?

Cleaning your dish rack is essential to prevent rust or stop it from spreading. Whether your rack is perfectly fine or has small rust spots, you should clean it regularly. 

There are several ways to clean your dish rack. Let’s discuss a few of them.

Wipe the Dish Rack and Utensils

Take a soft cloth to wipe your dish rack. You can use a dry towel as well. 

Wiping and rinsing the rack and the utensils after every use keeps it clean and safe from rust formation. 

Use Baking Soda

Baking soda is a perfect solution for small rust spots in your dish rack. So to use it to clean the rusted areas, first, you need to dissolve it in water. 

Take two cups of water and pour a tablespoon of baking soda. Then make this solution into a paste. 

Now use a regular brush or a toothbrush to scrub the paste on the rusted spots. The baking soda paste will heal the place and prevent rust from further spreading. 

Use White Vinegar

White vinegar is another excellent option to clean rust from your dish rack. It’s an old and very effective method. 

You need to pour some white vinegar over the racks of the dishwasher. Once you’ve poured it, let it sit and dry. You can also use a spray bottle to spread the vinegar over the rack.

After an hour, rinse the rack with a moist, soft cloth. You’ll see the rust is cleaned from the dish rack. 

Alternatively, you can run the dishwasher for 10-15 minutes with vinegar to clean it and make it rust-free. 

Let There Be Sun

Sunlight is helpful in keeping your dish rack clean from bacteria, molds, and rust! So ensure you feed the rack with natural sunshine for a few hours every week. 

How Can You Fix the Dish Rack Coating To Prevent Rusting?

If you notice small patches and defects on the coating of your dish rack, know that you can fix it. 

Many people replace a rack when there’s a patch or hole in the coating. But they are fixable, and fixing them can be a cost-effective option. 

We’ll discuss two methods to fix a dish rack coating so it can prevent rust. 

Use Mechanical Tape

Mechanical tape works great on paper, metal, or any other surfaces. The adhesiveness is quite good; you can use it to protect your dish rack from rusting. 

If you see small patches on the rack, seal them with mechanical tape. It will cover the hole very well and keep the metal part away from water and air oxygen.

Use a Repair Kit

There are many repair kits available just to fix a dishwasher rack coating. You may find any suitable kit in a super shop or online.

To use the kit, first, clean your dish rack thoroughly. Next, use a metal wire to scrape some rust from the spots. After cleaning, you can apply the paint over the rusted area. 

Make sure to shake the kit before using it. You may need to apply 2-3 layers over one patch. Just ensure that the open wound is covered perfectly. 

Once they are painted with the solution, let them dry. It may take a while, but it will harden and create a protective layer over the patches after drying. 


We use the dish rack almost every day, so it’s important to take care of it. A rusty dish rack may not only look bad, but it also is unhealthy to use. 

We hope our tips are helpful to you and you know how to prevent dish rack from rusting by reading this article. 

Some FAQs

Is Rust on a Dish Rack Harmful?

A rusted dish rack can be harmful because it can hurt your skin. Moreover, rust is not a material you want in your cleaned dishes. It’s not food safe, and the bacteria in the rust can cause tetanus.

Can You Seal a Rusted Dish Rack?

Yes, it’s possible to seal a rusted dish rack so it cannot pose any danger. You can use a vinyl coating or paint to cover up any rusted area. But first, you need to clean the area before sealing it.

Can I Use a Rusty Dish Rack?

You can use a rusty dish rack, but it will not be safe for a long time. A rusty dish rack can leave rust stains on your dish. Moreover, rusted metal can hurt you and cause pain or infection.

Can the Stainless Dish Rack Get Rusted Too?

Stainless steel has chromium that prevents rust. However, many dish racks are not often made of stainless steel. Instead, they have a coating of stainless steel over them. In that case, if the layer is damaged or cut open, it can get rusted with the contact of moisture and air.

When Should I Change My Dish Rack?

You can use your dish rack for a long time if you maintain it properly. By regular cleaning, keeping it dry, and protecting it from rust, you can go a long time with your dish rack. Ideally, a dish rack can last about ten years, but you may need to replace it if it gets damaged irreparably.