No one wants rusty fishing equipment. Once your hooks or metal lures have started rusting, there’s nothing you can do to reverse the process. It’s important that you take proactive measures to prevent your hooks from rusting. Here are a few of our top tips on how to keep your tackle box in the best shape!
Protect Your Tacklebox While Fishing
Rust begins to form when you store your hooks or metal lures while they’re still wet. With time, that moisture will create rust, not just on your hook, but on all the other metal items in your tackle box.
It’s important to protect your tackle box from moisture. If it’s raining and you have to change tackles, water getting into the box is inevitable. But as a general rule, your box should always be closed to prevent water from splashing into the box as you fish.
Air Out Your Tackle Box
Whether it was raining or you had a watery mishap, you should dry out your tackle box in between uses. The best way to do this is to just open the box and let it air out once you get home. Usually, 24 hours is plenty of time to dry out your hooks.
Rinse Off Salt
Saltwater is your enemy! Although it can be great to fish in, it can rapidly make your hooks rust. To avoid this, make sure you rinse off your hooks after you’ve fished in saltwater to get rid of all the salt. Then air-dry the hooks before you place them back in storage.
If you’re fishing in freshwater, you don’t need to worry about rinsing your hooks. You should also never store your metal lures and plastic lures in the same box. This is because the soft plastic lures might contain salt, and they could contaminate your metal lures, causing them to rust.
Spray Down Your Hooks
Anti-rust products can be a real life-saver for an angler. Aerosolized anti-rust products or WD-40 help to protect fishing gear from rusting. Just spray your hooks or lures with the product after you’re done fishing. Always let your hooks air-dry before you store them. You should spray down your gear after every use.
Use a Moisture Absorber
If you’re following these tips for how to stop fish hooks from rusting and still having trouble, you might need to get some backup for your fishing gear. There are actually a lot of items you can use to do this that you probably already have lying around your house. For example, a toothpick or the cotton head of a Q-tip work well at pulling moisture away from the hooks.
If you want the most effective moisture-absorbing power you can’t do any better than silica dry-gel packets. You can usually find these online, but you could also start saving them from other items you buy that have these packets. Storing your tackle box with two or three packets should do the trick.