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Stainless + Muriatic Acid = Disaster. Any way to remove?


I recently remodeled an office foyer and used 185 grit finished stainless steel to dress up elevator doors, insides of the elevator, a bridge walkway, back splash for a drinking fountain and decorative soffits. A few weeks after completion a weekend custodian used muriatic acid [affil links] to clean a back room sink. He let the acid sit in the sink for the weekend and when the office staff returned on Monday every bit the stainless was oxidized. Gas from the acid had filled the building and ruined the stainless. I've tried different cleaners, but to no avail. The oxidation returns after a few days. I believe the steel is 400 series, but I'm not sure. Removal of the stainless sheeting is nearly impossible.

Thanks for any help.

Derek Rentz
- Orem, Utah, USA

Hi Derek.

Perhaps try the archives # 18877 as that mentions some 3-M abrasive pads.

I even use some at home ... courtesy of a stainless steel fabricator.

Hope it helps ... but you'd need elbow grease, eh?

freeman newton portrait
Freeman Newton [deceased]
(It is our sad duty to advise that Freeman passed away
April 21, 2012. R.I.P. old friend).



Thanks for the suggestions. I can't seem to find the finishing pads any where. I have tried for a week, but can't locate those type. I wonder if there are any chemical solutions?

Derek Rentz
- Orem, Utah, USA

You probably need to re-passivate all of the stainless steel. Several service companies specialize in on-site passivation to fix problems like this. Lacking that, maybe you could safely apply a citric acid passivation process such as offered by Stellar Solutions [a supporting advertiser].

Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey


What others had said about citric acid seems right ... but if you can't get those pads, heh, why not try a local s.s. sheet fabricator, eh? I now have some at home and they sure help with the s.s. sinks ! You'd find that Stellar Solutions [a supporting advertiser] is a contributor to this site and you shouldn't have any problem contacting them. They'd give you good advice, I'm sure.

freeman newton portrait
Freeman Newton [deceased]
(It is our sad duty to advise that Freeman passed away
April 21, 2012. R.I.P. old friend).


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