How to Remove Iron Filings From Magnets?

Iron filings and bar magnets work together to make an amazing demonstration of magnetic fields. When they are separated by a piece of paper or a sheet of Plexiglas, the filings align with the magnetic field of the bar magnet in a dramatic way.

Remove Iron Filings From Magnets

But anyone who ever tried to remove iron filings (or small splinters of other magnets) from a magnet after the experiments know that this can be a very tedious task. I have found a simple solution:

  1. Let candle wax drip onto a piece of paper.
  2. Knead the wax while still warm.
  3. When you press the wax onto the magnet, the filings stick to the wax.
  4. Repeat steps 1 to 3 until all filings have been removed.
  5. As a final step, you could use a tissue/rag to clean the wax off the magnet.

Caution: Never drip the hot wax directly onto the magnet as the heat would result in a loss of magnetic force!

Magnets Cleaning Methods

Magnet + Iron filings = Fun Magic & Satisfying Experiment

How to Remove Iron Filings From Magnets?

There are several ways to remove iron filings from magnets:

  • Using a magnet. This method involves using the magnetic force of another magnet to pull the iron filings away from the magnet they are stuck to. To do this, place the magnet with the iron filings on top of a sheet of paper. Then, bring another magnet close to the magnet with the iron filings, allowing the magnetic force to attract the iron filings onto the paper.
  • Using a vacuum cleaner. This method involves using a vacuum cleaner to suction up the iron filings. Make sure to use a vacuum with a strong suction power and a hose attachment to reach the iron filings in crevices or hard-to-reach areas. Turn on the vacuum and hold the hose close to the magnet to suck up the iron filings.
  • Using a brush. This method involves using a soft-bristled brush, such as a toothbrush or makeup brush, to gently brush the iron filings away from the magnet. This method is best for removing iron filings from small or delicate magnets, as it is less likely to damage them.
  • Using a scraper. If the iron filings are stuck to the magnet and cannot be easily brushed off, you can use a scraper, such as a putty knife or butter knife, to gently scrape them off. Be careful not to damage the magnet while scraping.
  • Using soap and water. This method involves mixing a small amount of dish soap with water to create a cleaning solution that can help loosen and remove iron filings stuck to the magnet. Use a cloth or sponge to gently scrub the magnet with the soap and water solution, and then rinse it off with clean water. This method is best for removing iron filings that are difficult to remove with other methods.