Why does stainless steel rust?

March 18, 2020
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Why does stainless steel rust?


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   Sometimes when the brown rust (spot) appears on the surface of the stainless steel sink, people are surprised: How can stainless steel rust? The rust should not be stainless steel, or there is a problem with the steel." In fact, this is a one-sided misconception about stainless steel. Stainless steel will rust under certain conditions.

Stainless steel prevents the continued infiltration of oxygen atoms, continues to oxidation, and obtains the ability to resist rust by its surface formed a very thin and strong and stable rich chromium oxide film (protective film).

Once for some reason, this kind of film is destroyed constantly, the oxygen atom in air or liquid will continue to infiltrate or the iron atom in metal will continue to separate out, form the loose iron oxide, the metal surface will produce rust spot too.


This type of surface film is damaged in many forms, and is common in daily life as follows:

1. The stainless steel surface contains remain of dust or other dissimilar metal particles containing other metal elements. In humid air, the condensate between the deposit and the stainless steel is connected into a micro battery to initiate the electrochemical reaction. The protective film is damaged, which is called electrochemical corrosion.

  • The surface of the stainless steel adheres to organic matter juice (such as vegetables, noodles, soups, etc.). In the presence of water and oxygen, organic acids are formed, and organic acids attack the metal surface for a long time.

3. The surface of the stainless steel adheres with acids, alkalis, and salts (such as alkaline water and gray water splashes on the wall), causing localized corrosion.

4. In contaminated air (such as an atmosphere containing a large amount of sulfides, carbon oxides, and nitrogen oxides), condensation occurs, and sulfuric acid, nitric acidf and acetic acid liquids are formed, causing chemical corrosion.


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Ways to maintain the stainless steel sinks:

After the sinks is installed, rinse it with water, then wipe the surface with a rag, and then apply a small amount of vegetable oil on the surface of the sinks to prevent external rust spots or acid and alkali substances from directly adsorbing on the surface of the water tank. The installation of sinks is mostly carried out during the renovation of new homes. The presence of rust in sinks often occurs at this stage, so special attention should be paid to.

1.Since the water pipe in the new house often has a lot of iron and rust, these impurities and rust water is likely to accumulate in the bottom of the sink, resulting in rust in the sink. Therefore, it is very important to clean it in time when it is just started.

2. Decoration workers often pour chemicals such as paint into sinks and do not clean them in time, which is also the main cause of rust in sinks.

3. Decoration workers often soak metal tools in the sink, which is also easy to cause rust.

You don't need to be panic when this happens. This kind of rust is just on the surface of the sink. Just wipe it with a clean cloth on a "clean and brighf detergent or “five powder0, toothpaste, etc., and then use water to clean it. At last, dry it with a towel to eliminate this rust.

1. Deal with stains, from time to time,clean it with a mild detergent. Be careful not to scrub the sink with steel wire, scouring wire, or abrasive material. This will damage the sink.

2. Do not store water for a long time. If there is poor drainage, it should be repaired as soon as possible.

3. Try to avoid dumping chemicals in the sink. If are fallen into the water, it should be rinsed with water.

4. Do not put low carbon steel or cast iron utensils in the sink for a long time.

5. Do not put kimchi, mayonnaise, mustard, or other foods that has high salt content in the sink for a long time.

6. Do not cut food in the sink or on the sink drain board, especially the frozen food. This easily damages sink surface..



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