Sharpening stone and knives on grey table, closeup

You can use whetstone sharpening to keep your kitchen knives nice and sharp. This handy piece of equipment enables you to easily and efficiently sharpen the blades of any kind of knife, so you can streamline the cooking process and chop your ingredients for healthy meals.

However, as with any kitchen tool or gadget, you need to clean and maintain your whetstone to prolong its life span and enhance its function. This is the case no matter what grade of whetstone you own. 

Here are so maintain a whetstone of any grade. 

Soak the Whetstone Before Use

You should always soak your whetstone before use to protect it from damage during the knife sharpening process. Doing so prevents the stone from cracking and keeps it in tip-top shape.

Before every use, soak the whetstone in water. You can also use honing oil to soak the stone and prevent it from getting clogged up with debris. Honing oil (or a suitable honing oil substitute) is particularly helpful for creating a sharp, clean, cut edge on your knife blades. 

Clean Your Whetstone After Use

Once you have used your whetstone, you need to clean it properly. Doing so prevents the whetstone from getting and becoming less effective. 

Use a soft brush to remove debris from the stone before rinsing it with clean water. After rinsing, dry the stone with a clean towel. You can then store it away until you next need it.

Use the Right Technique When Using the Whetstone

Adopting the wrong technique when sharpening with a whetstone can cause it to crack or break. Even if the store doesn’t crack, you might decrease its function and effectiveness if you’re not using the correct technique. 

When using a whetstone, you’ll need to hold the knife at the correct angle and use smooth, consistent strokes to gently sharpen the blade. Make sure to use the entire surface of the stone to ensure an even edge.

Flatten the Whetstone

Over time and with extensive use, whetstones can become uneven. This is particularly true if you tend to use the same side of the whetstone when sharpening your kitchen tools.

When the surface of a whetstone becomes uneven, you might find it difficult to use it effectively. To resolve this issue, you need to flatten the stone, and there are lots of different tools that you can use to do this.

You can use a flattening stone or a diamond lapping plate to flatten your whetstone. To flatten the stone, rub the flattening tool against the whetstone in circular motions until the stone is even.

Keep Your Whetstone Safe When Not in Use

You’ll need to store your whetstone appropriately to prolong its lifespan and maximize its function. Keep it in a cool, dry place that is not prone to moisture.

If you have a wooden box or plastic wrap, use this to store your whetstone so that it is well-protected when you’re not using it.

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