Stainless Steel – To Rust or Not to Rust, That is The Question?

I think we are all aware that stainless steel has the likelihood to develop rust. Although it is less likely than most metals to become rust-riddled, it is still a metal, and therefore is susceptible to rust.

Take your grandmothers tried and true cast iron pan, leave it in a stainless steel sink, and a rust ring will assuredly appear. Although it might seem as though it was the stainless steel rusting beneath it, it was rather the pan that stained the bottom of the sink, leaving the suspicious rust ring. Regardless, this left behind rust is not a simple problem to remove.

Rust is basically corrosion, and with over 150 grades of stainless steel available on the market today, some are more likely to rust than others depending on what other elements they are combined with.

Generally, the higher the chromium content, the less likely the steel will rust. But regardless, time has a way of corroding all things – including stainless steel. High quality or not.

However, there are ways to prevent stainless steel from rusting. The process is called “passivating”. Passivating allows stainless steel to retain its corrosion resistance but producing high levels of surface chromium, which creates a corrosion resistant passive surface.

There are a lot of scientific facts and fancy words that go along with the process, but the end result is a highly resistant stainless steel product, that will stand the test of time against corrosion – and as such – will resist rust.

So although generic stainless steel will rust as we have discussed, stainless steel that has been put through the passivating process will hold true to its shiny surface (or dull one …or whatever surface you choose to create) and rust-free reality.

At Absolute Fabrication, we have the products and solutions to make passivating of your stainless steel products a possibility for our clients, and are happy to share our valuable resources with you in order to prolong the life of your stainless steel object, or upcoming project.

Let us know how we can help …feel free to call our office at any time to further discuss the value of this service for your stainless steel!