How to Keep Old Hickory Knives from Rusting

6 Ways to Keep Old Hickory Knives from Rusting: Video Guide to Follow

When it comes to keeping your knives sharp and rust-free, you can do a few things to help. For starters, make sure that you store your knives properly. Avoid keeping them in direct sunlight or humid environments, and ensure they’re stored horizontally so that the blades are positioned at a 90-degree angle from the handle. Also, make sure to oil your knives now and then to keep them in good working condition. Wash them after every use to prevent them from rusting.
We’ll discuss the different types of knife rust, the different ways to prevent it, and the best ways to treat it when it happens. We’ll also include a guide on how to store your knives, so they stay sharp and damage-free. So if you’re looking for advice on how to keep your knives in good condition, look no further!

5 Causes of Old Hickory Knife Rusting

Many factors can contribute to knife rusting, but the most common causes include water exposure, metal alloy composition (containing too much nickel or other metals), improper cleaning and storage, incorrect blade sharpening techniques, and contact with acidic substances.

This can be due to moisture, air, or other chemicals. There are five leading causes of knife rust:


Humidity can cause rust on Knives. Rust is a natural process that happens when metal corrodes from the inside out. It’s typically caused by exposure to moisture and air pollution.

When water enters the knife through the blade or the handle, it causes corrosion to the metal. This can happen quickly if the knife is left in an environment with high humidity, such as a bathroom or kitchen. Extremely, rust can even spread up to the blade’s edge!

To prevent rust from happening, make sure your knives are stored in a dry place and avoid leaving them unprotected near water sources. You can also store your knives in a plastic sheath to protect them from moisture and air pollutants.

Improper Storage

This happens when the blades are exposed to moisture and air, which can cause them to corrode and dull over time. As a result, your knives will become less effective and may even start to break.

To prevent this from happening, you need to keep your knives in a dry place where they won’t be exposed to moisture or air. It would be best to store them upright to protect the blades from harmful elements. And last but not least, ensure you sharpen them regularly, so they stay sharp and functioning.

Lack of Lubrication

Lubrication is essential for preventing corrosion because it keeps the metal particles in contact with each other. This allows them to form a protective layer that defends against the growth of rust. In addition, it also prevents the metal from becoming brittle, which would make it more susceptible to breaking or cracking.

The most common sources of lubrication are oil and grease. However, water can also be used as a lubricant under certain conditions. When water is used as a lubricant, it forms an electrostatic charge that helps attract and hold onto other molecules. This makes it an effective way to reduce friction and wear in many applications, including those related to the creative industries.

Acidic liquids

Acidic liquids, such as fruit juices or vinegar, are the most common cause of wetting. This may occur if a knife is dropped in juice or vinegar or sits in liquid for an extended period.

Another cause of rust is corrosion caused by saltwater intrusion. This happens when the knife is exposed to seawater – either while it’s still in its packaging or after its use. Finally, rust can also result from metal fatigue – when the metal used to make the knife becomes too weak to withstand regular use.

Exposure to Acids

Battery acid, for example, is the most prevalent kind. This occurs when the knife is exposed to an acidic environment, such as thrown into a sink or left in contact with fruit juices or other acidic foods.

Other causes of rust include moisture and metal fatigue. Metal fatigue happens when the metal’s strength is exceeded over a long period, which can make the metal fatigued and susceptible to corrosion. Moisture can also cause rust if it enters the knife through the seams or cracks in the blade.

Each type of rust will affect different types of knives differently, so it’s essential to keep track of your knives’ condition and take appropriate measures accordingly.

6 Ways to Follow

There are a few things that you can do to help keep old hickory knives from rusting. One of the most important is keeping them clean and free of debris or build-up. Make sure to wipe down the blade after every use and dry it off completely before storing it. It would be best to store your knives in a moisture-free location, preferably in an outdoor cabinet or storage area.

You may also want to coat the blade with cooking oil once per month. This will protect it from corrosion and make cutting food easier because the knife will not stick when wet.

Olive Oil

Many experts believe that olive oil may be effective in keeping a knife from rusting. This is because olive oil has a high level of antioxidants and polyphenols that can combat the formation of corrosion on metal.

Additionally, olive oil contains chemicals called monounsaturated fats, which are known to protect against oxidation and lead to longer blade life. So while it’s not guaranteed, incorporating some Olive Oil into your cooking routine might help keep your knives looking sharp for years to come!

Sharpening Knife

Can you sharpen a rusty knife

Sharpening knives may remove rust, but this process is not always successful and can cause further damage to the blade. It’s essential to use a quality sharpener that conforms to the specific geometry of your knife blade to get optimal results.

Additionally, avoid using harsh abrasives or water-based solutions on your knife blades; these can strip away the protective layer that prevents corrosion from happening in the first place.


Vaseline can be a good rust preventative for knives if used as directed. However, Vaseline is not ideal for all knives due to its petroleum-based ingredients and may cause corrosion or other damage. It’s always best to test a small amount of Vaseline on your knife before using it on an entire blade to gauge the risk of corrosion.


Vinegar can protect knives from rusting, although it will not stop the blade from tarnishing over time. When acidic vinegar is applied to a rusty surface, it dissolves the iron oxide that forms on the metal and makes it less likely for further corrosion. The acid also breaks down organic material found on knives, inhibiting the growth of zoology fungus that causes staining and rusting.

Therefore, applying diluted vinegar to your knife before storing it will help keep them looking nicer for longer while preventing any damage done by oxidation.

Mineral Oil

Mineral oil may prevent knives from rusting in the short term, but it does not protect them against other types of damage. This oil is a petroleum derivative and can dissolve metal ions, leading to corrosion. Mineral oils are one of the causes of knife blade rust. Instead, use a natural lubricant like avocado or coconut oil that will help to keep your knives looking sharp and performing optimally.

Baby Oil

Baby oil may help to prevent knives from rusting, but this has not been proven definitively. Some people believe that baby oil’s linoleic acid and mineral content can protect metal against oxidation. Others suggest that using a small amount of baby oil every time you use your knife will help to keep it clean and free of Rust-Oleum or other corrosive compounds. Ultimately, it is up to each user to test whether baby oil helps prevent knives from rusting.

Which ingredients should you avoid using when cooking with a knife? 

One of the most important things to remember when cooking with a knife is to use safe ingredients. This means avoiding anything harmful if ingested, such as sharp edges on knives or raw meat. Here are six ingredients you should avoid using when cooking with a knife:

Raw chicken– Chicken can contain bacteria that can cause food poisoning, and raw poultry also contains uncooked pieces of bone, which could easily puncture your stomach.

Onion– Onions contain sulfur compounds which make them acidic and potentially dangerous if consumed in large quantities. Additionally, onions create radicals when cut, damaging DNA and other cells in the body.

Garlic– Garlic contains allicin, an enzyme that causes it to release sulfides gas during processing; this gas is highly irritating to the throat and lungs. garlic also has anti-bacterial properties, but these benefits may not be desirable for people with asthma or other respiratory issues!

Catnip– While catnip does not directly affect human health aside from inducing relaxation (or “happiness”), some people believe that its scent could trigger allergic reactions in those sensitive to certain plants/flowers.

How to clean your knife correctly to avoid corrosion?

Cleaning your knife correctly is essential to avoid corrosion and other harmful effects on the blade. To clean your knife, first, make sure that it is scorched. Then, place a Non-Scratch Block (or some other protective surface) between the blade and the work surface while you clean it. Be careful not to splash any water onto the cutting board or yourself! Finally, use a sharpening stone or steel to sharpen the blade.

How often can I use oil to keep knives from rusting? 

You should use oil to keep your knives from rusting if you can. However, be aware that this will add extra moisture to the knife and may cause it to lose its edge over time.

Additionally, cooking in an oil-filled pan creates massive amounts of heat and is not recommended for nonstick surfaces. So, while oil may help prevent your knives from rusting, it’s best to use a minimal amount as needed and avoid using it daily or every time you cook.

How long does it take for knives to rust?

Although it’s impossible to predict how long a particular knife will rust, the average time is around two years. This depends on several factors, including water content, metal composition, and temperature. The higher the humidity level in the environment where your knives are stored, the faster they will corrode.

If you’re concerned about rusty knives in your kitchen cabinets or utensils being exposed to moisture and salt from dishes, there are several solutions that you can try. You can store them upright so that any condensation that forms atop them falls back down into the container rather than collecting on the surface of the blades.

Why do knives go rusty in the dishwasher?

While it’s not always apparent, knives can go rusty in the dishwasher because of the high sodium and chlorine levels. These ingredients cause the metal to corrode, which happens when knives come into contact with water and food. As a result, you may experience problems like dull blades, poor hygiene conditions, corrosion around hardware such as hinges and rivets, and more.

There are many ways to avoid this issue from happening in the first place. For example, refrain from using harsh detergents containing chemicals or phosphates; use a gentle soap with borax to protect against rusting. Dry your knives entirely after each use by storing them horizontally or vertically so they don’t touch one another or any other sharp object nearby. Finally, if all else fails, place your knives in an oven on low heat (180 degrees F) for 10 minutes before rinsing them off with cool water.

Final Words

Following the directions, you can easily prevent the hickory knives from rusting. Ensure that you dry them properly after washing them and storing them in a dry place. If not, your knives will start exhibiting signs of rust soon!
In case it happens to your precious hickory knife, don’t worry, as we have listed six methods above. One more thing: do not use steel wool on the knives while rinsing off rust because they may get scratched or dented. Instead, use baking soda or a soap-water mixture to clean them properly and safely!
Please share your thoughts in the comments below on how to keep your knives free of rust!

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