how to restore corroded aluminum shower door
Kristina Davis

You probably have a rusty aluminum shower door and now you are wondering how to restore corroded aluminum shower door. Well, You are in the right place, stick till the end to know how.

Aluminum shower door frames are vulnerable to corrosion when exposed to hard water, soap scum, and dirt.

They are also corroded when the metal’s outer layer interacts with other environmental factors.

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The oxidation stage of corrosion naturally produces a second, ugly layer of aluminum oxide that shields the metal from corrosion.

Cleaning rusted metal shower doors with DIY cleaning solutions like vinegar, baking soda, or bleach is the first step in restoring them. Commercial metal cleaners, restorers, and brighteners may also be used.

What Causes Corrosion On Aluminum Shower Doors?

corrosion in shower doors

Corrosion is a natural process that happens to all metals. It’s the result of an interaction between two substances: oxygen and metal. 

This can happen when water gets into the metal and reacts with it.

Corrosion can go through several stages, but in a shower door, it starts with pitting and creates holes in the metal.

The more concentrated the water is, the faster it will corrode. The best way to prevent corrosion is to keep your shower doors clean. 

Use a soft cloth or sponge with soap and water to wipe away any dirt or grime that might be on your doors.

It’s a problem that is easily preventable and relatively easy to fix, but it still needs to be addressed quickly and properly.

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Here are the three main causes of corrosion on aluminum shower doors:

  • Exposure to salt water, chlorides, and other acidic substances
  • Contact with other metals, such as chrome or stainless steel
  • Inadequate cleaning during construction

How To Restore Corroded Aluminum Shower Door

restore aluminum doors

To restore the appearance of your shower door aluminum frames, start by cleaning out any mineral buildup or additional dirt.

You may either use professional cleansers made particularly for aluminum or common home DIY cleaning products to clean your shower frames.

The safety measures include:

  • Wear safety equipment (goggles, gloves, etc.) since certain cleaning agents may be dangerous to your unprotected  eyes and skin
  • Avoid using abrasive cleansers like steel brushes or strong chemicals since they might end up doing more harm to your shower frame.
  • Avoid using solvents that are overly acidic since they may cause pitting in aluminum by eating away at the surface.
  • For optimal results, dilute acidic cleansers with water.
  • A high-pressure cleaner or spray nozzle should not be used.
  • Use soft or salty water sparingly since they contain minerals that corrode the door.
Tip: Simply wash the frames with water and mild soap to remove light grime.

Method #1: Using Vinegar


Your shower door may be cleaned of debris, grease, and grime by using white vinegar.

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You probably already have vinegar on hand, which is another advantage of using it to clean an aluminum shower door that has rusted.


  • Brush with nylon bristles
  • Fine steel wool
  • 4 cups of White vinegar 
  • 4 cups of hot water

To clean your old aluminum shower door using vinegar, thoroughly whisk the water and vinegar together in a bucket to make the mixture uniform. 

Then apply the mixture to the shower door frame and scrub the oxidation spots away with a nylon bristle brush. 

Use fine steel wool and warm water to scrub out any remaining areas with tough stains. Finally, cleanse off with water.

Method #2: Using Of Baking Soda

baking soda

Aluminum shower doors may be cleaned with baking soda to get rid of mildew, calcium deposits, and dirt.

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To make a baking soda cleaner even more powerful, add lemon juice.

Lemon juice is a fantastic natural cleaner in addition to disinfecting. The benefit of a baking soda solution is that it can go into gaps and microscopic spaces.


  • A mixing vessel
  • One cup of baking soda
  • Old toothbrush
  • Two cups of Lemon juice 
  • Paper towels

To clean your aluminum shower door, lemon juice and baking soda should be combined in a bowl and stirred to a paste-like consistency. 

Then using an old toothbrush, spread the paste over the metal frames and allow it to dry. 

Use a paper towel that has been rinsed in warm water to remove the baking soda buildup off the shower door frame.

Note: Cleaning the baking soda as soon as it dries is advised since it could damage the metal.

Method #3: Using Bleach 

use bleach

Use bleach’s effective cleaning capabilities to get rid of stubborn stains that seem insurmountable.

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Because it eliminates difficult buildup, kills germs, and costs little, bleach is a popular home cleanser.

Even the toughest stains get erased when bleach and baking soda are used together.

When using a bleach cleaner to clean an anodized aluminum shower door, use rubber gloves to protect your skin.


  • A mixing vessels
  • Leather gloves
  • One cup of bleach 
  • Half a cup of baking powder
  • Sponge

Baking soda and bleach are combined in a dish and stirred to create a thick mixture that can enable you to efficiently clean your old aluminum shower door. 

Carefully spread the paste all over the metal door using a sponge.

After letting it remain for five to ten minutes, rinse the paste with fresh water to remove any residue.

Note: Aluminum may also be cleaned using muriatic acid, however indoor usage is not advised because of the lack of plenty of natural ventilation.

Method #4: Using A Silicon Carbide Sandpaper

use silicon carbide sandpaper

Another technique that may be used to clean rusted metal shower doors is in addition to the use of baking soda, vinegar, and bleach.

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  • Silicon carbide sandpaper
  • A wire brush
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • A piece of cloth

Follow these simple steps to clean your old aluminum shower door using sandpaper:

Remove the rust dust off the shower door with a piece of cloth or with a wire brush

If the rust is still present, lightly clean the door with silicon carbide sandpaper. 

Avoid applying too much pressure since you risk damaging the metal. 

Finally, to remove the sanding dust from the shower door frame, get a piece of cloth and soak it in isopropyl alcohol. Then clean the frame with a cloth.

How To Prevent Aluminum Shower Door From Getting Rusty

prevent shower door from rust

Once all rust has been removed from your shower door, you should take steps to stop it from happening again.

Here are some tips to prevent your aluminum shower door from getting rusty

Tip #1: Regular Cleaning

Regular cleaning prevents mineral and soap deposits from building up and oxidizing the shower door frames.

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Apply car wax to the shower door frame after washing to keep it from rusting.

Note: You need to know how to clean old aluminum shower doors as indicated above to elongate their lifespan.

Tip #2: Painting

One of the best methods for avoiding the rusting of metals like aluminum is painting.

paint steel

The metal is protected from oxygen and moisture from the environment by the paint. 

By keeping moisture from interacting with metal, corrosion is avoided.

Tip #3: Make Sure Your Bathroom Has Enough Airflow

Poor bathroom ventilation will cause the metal shower frame to oxidize, which will cause rust to develop.

After each shower, wipe the shower doors to avoid water accumulation because a crucial component in the rusting process is water. 

This indicates that there are very few risks of the shower door frames rusting if they are cleaned often.

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Tip #4: Design Appropriateness 

If installing aluminum shower doors in freshly built bathrooms, make sure the entire design is faultless.

design appropriately

If the design does not allow for moisture to be drained, atmospheric corrosion could be made worse.

Note: Your shower door should be sealed against rust.

Tip #5: Select Frames Made of Anodized Aluminum

An electrochemical procedure called anodization coats the surface of aluminum items with an aluminum oxide layer.

This enhances the product’s appearance while protecting it from damage.

Shower door frames should not be exposed to extremely acidic or alkaline conditions.



Hope this answers your question on how to restore corroded aluminum shower doors.

There’s not really a bad way to restore a corroded aluminum shower door!

Well, so long as your goal is to finish with a clean, corrosion-free finish again. 

However, if you’re looking for the best way, your best bet is probably to use isopropyl alcohol and sanding as described above.

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