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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2008
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    732

    Default How to clean gunky buckets

    Our barn water is hard and sometimes rusty. The water buckets have developed a scale gunky brown that just does not scrub off. IDK if massive amounts of vinegar would do the trick or something like CLR, which I would be afraid to use. Any ideas? Throw away buckets and start over?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec. 27, 2006
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    1,783

    Default

    I have the same issue, and just scrub the buckets almost everyday. If there is some staining it really isn't a big deal, just cosmetic, but vinegar will work if you let it sit long enough (like hours to all day). I have done this with small animal water dishes and it worked really well.

    BTW, I have buckets that are 10+ years old with hard water stains, but otherwise fine. They still are used for water and the horses don't care.

    Christa


    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3

    Default

    I will be watching this thread for responses. Like an idiot, I bought my horse bright yellow buckets and I can never get them looking clean. I change her water every day and scrub them with a hard brush before refilling, and they've still got a gross film on the sides. Bleach doesn't seem to work, even if I let it sit all day.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep. 13, 2000
    Location
    Greenville, MI,
    Posts
    12,268

    Default

    I always used a hard scrub brush Hot water, and a bit of Plain white Vinegar, LEt them sit while I did stalls and then scrubbed and rinsed, They look great and get off the white and gunk, and safe too!
    "you can only ride the drama llama so hard before it decides to spit in your face." ?Caffeinated.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr. 11, 2007
    Location
    Middle Tennessee
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    1,030

    Default

    I have used hot vinegar water for stuff like this but I put the hot water in first thing in the AM and left it "steep" until evening so I didn't have to use as much elbow grease.

    I think I used white vinegar - can't remember

    I don't have that problem anymore. The buckets get rinsed every day. When I remember, I throw some Clorox in there and swish it around with a brush.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr. 12, 2010
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    389

    Default

    I remember hearing a rumor years ago that Anne Kursinski used white water buckets or something to make sure they are clean. If its true, wonder how they kept them clean??? We scrub ours atleast 1x per day, 2 if they are in and bleach 1x per week. The lighter buckets are hard to get stains removed



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul. 2, 2003
    Location
    Woodland, Ca
    Posts
    6,257

    Default

    You might have some luck with Baking soda, vinegar and a sponge. CLR can be used in a coffee maker, so it's probably o.k. too.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul. 10, 2003
    Location
    Where is gets way too cold
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    4,149

    Default

    If you have a pressure washer, they usually help quite a bit.
    As Peter, Paul, and Mary say, a dragon lives forever.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep. 26, 2011
    Location
    WNC
    Posts
    851

    Default

    If you have some dishwasher detergent powder try putting that in with the hot water in the morning and scrubbing with a hard brush after it's had a good long time to soak.
    It's just grass and water till it hits the ground.



  10. #10
    SLR is offline Working Hunter Premium Member
    Original Poster
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2008
    Posts
    732

    Default

    Thanks all, some really good ideas to try. Esp like the power washer idea, but have visions of shooting buckets across the paddocks. The buckets are quite usable, but I would like them to look cleaner, and since we have a helper this summer, it looks doable. My shoulders tell me scrubbing days are over for me.
    The horses don't seem to care.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar. 29, 2009
    Posts
    327

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CrowneDragon View Post
    If you have a pressure washer, they usually help quite a bit.
    I just pressure washed all my water buckets and feed tubs and it got rid of most of the gunk that daily scrubbing didn't get. Of course pressure washing is addictive and I ended up washing the whole barn. :-)


    1 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    Deep South
    Posts
    14,935

    Default

    Scotch Brite hand pads.
    http://buy3mindustrial.com/scotch-brite-hand-pads.html
    Usually found through an industrial supplier
    http://www.mcmaster.com/#3m-scotchbr...e-pads/=n70nrj
    ... _. ._ .._. .._



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep. 13, 2000
    Location
    Greenville, MI,
    Posts
    12,268

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by walkinthewalk View Post
    I have used hot vinegar water for stuff like this but I put the hot water in first thing in the AM and left it "steep" until evening so I didn't have to use as much elbow grease.

    I think I used white vinegar - can't remember

    I don't have that problem anymore. The buckets get rinsed every day. When I remember, I throw some Clorox in there and swish it around with a brush.
    White Vinegar works great for so many things!
    But the trick is you are right, rinse daily and run the brush around them.
    "you can only ride the drama llama so hard before it decides to spit in your face." ?Caffeinated.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb. 3, 2005
    Location
    Southern Ontario
    Posts
    948

    Default

    CLR works great, just rinse well.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    May. 16, 2005
    Location
    Elmwood, Wisconsin
    Posts
    1,379

    Default

    If you have dairies in the area, ask the farmer where he buys
    pipeline cleaner. There is a product I buy at Mills Fleet Farm
    (which sells dairy supplies among other things) called
    Milkstone Remover. It is meant to put in the lines that carry
    milk from the cow to the storage tank when cleaning the
    lines after each milking. It dissolves calcium buildup and
    other grunge and is considered safe to have been in the
    pipes that will subsequently carry milk (dairy safety inspectors are VERY picky). I use the product to keep my
    coffee maker clean (we have hard water). I also use this
    product to clean my stock tank heaters at the end of each
    winter and they now last through more years.
    Robin from Dancing Horse Hill
    Elmwood, Wisconsin


    1 members found this post helpful.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul. 24, 2004
    Posts
    2,739

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SunkenMeadow View Post
    I remember hearing a rumor years ago that Anne Kursinski used white water buckets or something to make sure they are clean. If its true, wonder how they kept them clean??? We scrub ours atleast 1x per day, 2 if they are in and bleach 1x per week. The lighter buckets are hard to get stains removed
    I've used white water buckets for years - people think that's crazy but I can always tell when my buckets have even one speck of grime on them. I scrub mine daily with just a regular stiff brush and water - never had an issue with grime building up on them. Yes I am a fanatic about clean buckets .
    "When a horse greets you with a nicker & regards you with a large & liquid eye, the question of where you want to be & what you want to do has been answered." CANTER New England



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb. 28, 2006
    Location
    The rocky part of KY
    Posts
    9,507

    Default

    I use straight white vinegar to clean my plastic bunny water dishes. The bunnies will pee in them and it makes a thick scale that comes out easily with the vinegar.
    Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
    Incredible Invisible



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2006
    Posts
    3,578

    Default

    There is a product called "Kaboom" (smells awful!) which I've found works very well. Spray, let it sit for an hour or so and scrub with a ball of SS scrubber stuff. Then rinse well. I also spray straight Clorox in my buckets, let dry, rinse lightly then refill with drinking water. THAT really does a good job of keeping the scummy junk away.
    www.crosscreeksporthorses.com
    Breeders of Painted Thoroughbreds and Uniquely Painted Irish Sport Horses in Northeast Oklahoma



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar. 9, 2006
    Location
    South-Central PA
    Posts
    2,313

    Default

    I soak my stock tank heater overnight in straight vinegar at the end of each season. We also have very hard water, so I get the rust colored calcium build up on anything that sits with water. I usually pressure wash the stock tank, but I agree - pressure washing a bucket would send it shooting to the neighbors I would fill the bucket with water, and dump at least a full cup of vinegar in it. Let it sit overnight (or at least 12 hours)...dump the vinegar water into the next empty bucket while you check if the first bucket is clean. Warning: wherever you dump the used vinegar/water, it will kill the grass...so be careful where you dump it.
    Cindy



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    Deep South
    Posts
    14,935

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Robin@DHH View Post
    There is a product I buy at Mills Fleet Farm
    (which sells dairy supplies among other things) called
    Milkstone Remover.
    AKA Phosphoric acid available at TSC; http://www.tractorsupply.com/webapp/...=&cm_vc=-10005
    ... _. ._ .._. .._



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