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topic 14343

Removing "Rust" on Stainless 304

A discussion started in 2002 but continuing through 2019


Q. We installed last summer numerous Stainless toilet fixtures in a public pavilion bathroom (no-heat rooms). The owner called & stated that the fixtures are rusting. It looks like rust to us but is that possible with 304SS? How do we correct or remove the "rust"! We are not metal finishers by any means. Just Need Help. Thanks.

Dennis Scheich
- Troy, Michigan


A. You probably ended up with a low grade 304 or 303. Stainless will rust/discolor. 316 alloy is a superior alloy to prevent rusting, used in the marine environment. If there is a plating company near by, ask them for some passivation solution and brush it on and hose it off. Ask them how long to leave it on.

G. Heck
- Oxnard, California, USA

February 12, 2019

Q. Hi, I would like to ask about the process of removing rust/corrosion on Stainless steel.

I was trying to remove the rust/corrosion on Stainless steel material by using the rust strip (chemical), then rinsing with IPA. Next I go with anti rust, after that I spin dry without heater.

The result I get is that my stainless steel has white patches on the surface. Why?

And what is rust strip, IPA, and anti rust general pH?

herry porter
bandung steel - bandung, jokja, indonesia

February 15, 2019

IPA is usually in reference to isopropyl alcohol, a common solvent. Rust Strip and Anti Rust should have SDSes available that give some idea of their contents.

In my experience, white patches on stainless after cleaning are generally chemical residue that was not completely rinsed off. Sometimes though it is etch marks where the surface finish was altered by the chemicals.

ray kremer
Ray Kremer
Stellar Solutions, Inc.
supporting advertiser
McHenry, Illinois
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