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topic 12144

Restoring Pitted Stainless Steel and Carbon Steel for Restaurant Use


I recently examined stainless steel restaurant equipment and some steel equipment that had been subject to a structure fire. The finish on the stainless is beginning to pit where a concentration of the corrosive substance is deposited on the surface. Can this pitting be effectively removed using polishing agents to restore a smooth finish on the stainless ? Can the surface rust be effectively removed from the steel equipment ? Should the steel surfaces be oiled like an iron skillet to restore the surfaces to useable condition in a restaurant atmosphere ?


Dan Lehman
analytical laboratories - New Haven, Indiana



Yes in both cases, but it might take some work and some expense, depending on your desires. If you want to restore pitted stainless steel to a high polish finish you will need to either have it polished mechanically or electropolished, depending on the finish you want. If the size is such that it will fit into a bath, electropolishing is the easiest. But this also depends on the shape of the part as to how effectively it can be electropolished. Once you get the high polish finish back, you can passivate it to remove any residual iron and keep it from recorroding.

The rust can easily be removed from the steel parts with a number of commercially available rust removers. If the finish on the parts is critical you need to be careful not to use something that will etch the surface too much. After removing the rust, oiling the steel is a good way to protect it in the future, if this is possible in your application.

Call us if you need help.

lee kremer
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Lee Kremer
Stellar Solutions, Inc.
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McHenry, Illinois
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