Long life Stainless Steel

Cleaning

Caring

Maintenance

Stainless steel is a low maintenance material but not maintenance free. Long life can be achieved with stainless steel wire and mesh providing the grade that best fits the application selected, applying the appropriate fabrication and following installation procedures – and with regular cleaning undertaken – it’s atheistic appeal will be retained.

What is tea staining?

Tea staining is the brown discolouration of the surface of stainless steel caused by corrosion. It is a cosmetic issue that does not affect the structural integrity or life of the stainless steel. Tea staining occurs most commonly within 5km of coastal areas however it can also occur in polluted urban environments.

Why is maintenance necessary?

Surface contamination in the form of deposits must be prevented. These deposits may be minute particles of iron or rust from other sources such as tools previously used on carbon steel. There are also naturally occurring atmospheric conditions which produce deposits, such as salt from marine environments. The more aggressive the environment is the more regular the cleaning program will be required.

Maintenance program

The cleaning frequency of stainless steel depends on four points;

  • The environment
  • Position of the stainless steel structure
  • Stainless steel surface finish and structure design
  • Client’s expectations

A rule of thumb for cleaning external stainless steel is when you clean the surrounding windows also clean the stainless steel.

A guide to specifying and cleaning external stainless steel

Environment Grade 304 Grade 316
Clean Inland 3 – 6 months 6 -12 months
Polluted urban/Industrial Not suitable 6 -12 months
Coastal/Marine (not splashed) Not suitable 3 – 6 months

Source: ASSDA

Note: Rainwater is an effective natural cleaner, stainless steel that does not get rained upon will need more frequent cleaning.

Important stainless steel fabrication information

Stainless steel can be contaminated by carbon steel which will lead to corrosion. Ideally, a fabricator will have dedicated workshop and tools for stainless steel only.

Contamination can be picked up from:

  • Grinding wheels, wire brushes and linishing belts
  • Steel storage racks
  • Tooling used with other metals
  • Contamination from grinding or welding sparks from nearby carbon steel fabrication

It is recommended than when stainless steel is to be used for external purposes that it be electropolished.

For further information please refer to:

The Australian Stainless Steel Development Association (ASSDA) www.assda.asn.au

For technical FAQ’s, visit http://www.assda.asn.au/technical-info/technical-faqs

Online Quote Form

Complete the form below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

  • Product CodeQuantity (length of roll, number of panels etc)Time Frame for when Goods are Required (tender, current project - next week, next month etc)* 
    Add a new row

Online Quote Form

Complete the form below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Subject: Care
  • Product CodeQuantity (length of roll, number of panels etc)Time Frame for when Goods are Required (tender, current project - next week, next month etc) 
    Add a new row