LESLIE: Heading out to Oregon to talk with Sheree about rust stains. What happened?
SHEREE: Hi. Yeah, I have a concrete slab patio in my backyard and I think the fertilizer has caused some staining on the patio. It looks rust-colored. And I’m wondering if there’s a product or a process that will remove those stains for me.
TOM: Do you have a sprinkler system?
SHEREE: I do.
TOM: I doubt it’s the fertilizer that’s causing the rust. It’s probably just the rust that’s coming up through the sprinkler system. Do you have well water?
SHEREE: Oh. No, uh-uh. Runs the city water.
TOM: Hmm. Well, regardless, I think that you can clean it with a solution of TSP, trisodium phosphate, available at hardware stores, home centers.
SHEREE: (overlapping voices) Oh, OK.
TOM: Mix up a fairly strong solution. Use a brush; like a bristle brush on a stick.
TOM: Scrub it in a little bit, rinse it off. That ought to brighten it up. And make sure you direct those sprinkler heads so that the water does not reach the patio because I think you’re going to find that you’re pulling up some iron from the ground and that’s probably what’s causing this rust stain.
SHEREE: Yeah, it does seem to be around the edge of the patio, too, so that could be. OK, well thanks. I really appreciate it.
TOM: You’re welcome, Sheree. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.