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Understanding 3 Early Stages of Rust Formation

Rust represents one of the most significant threats to iron and steel. Unfortunately, it also represents a natural process - one that it can be difficult to prevent entirely. If left unchecked, rust will continue to grow worse and worse, until it has eventually eaten right through the material. This can leave things like tools and automobiles in a dangerously weakened state.
Fortunately, you can protect your investments by having rust professional removed. Yet if you do not act quickly enough, there may be little they can do to help you. If you would like to improve your understanding of the destructive effects of rust, read on. This article will outline three early stages of rust formation, as well as the repair tactics used at each stage.
1. Stage 0
Stage zero represents the ideal baseline - one in which no rust is present. This means that you will not be able to visibly see any rust at all. Likewise, there should be no signs of etching or pitting on the surface of the metal. If the surface happens to be painted, the paint will not show any signs of bubbling or cracking.
At Stage 0, no repair is necessary since no rust is present. Yet you can still take action to minimize the likelihood of rust forming by ensuring that the surface remains as clean as possible. Be sure to wipe away potentially corrosive substances like water and road salt. You should remove grease, dirt, and solvents, lest they contribute to the breakdown of any protective coatings.
2. Stage 1
Here you will begin to notice rust-colored deposits on the surface of the metal. Such deposits may also be black or white in color. If painted, the surface may display bubbling or cracking. At this point, however, the base metal remains relatively undamaged. In other words, pitting or etching will not have caused the surface to lose its smoothness.
Stage 1 rust represents a superficial problem - yet one that will quickly escalate if not attended to properly. Repairing Stage 1 rust involves thoroughly removing the corrosion using an abrasive substance such as sandpaper, exposing the bare metal that lies beneath. If dealing with a painted surface, the repair person then applies a coat of primer, allows it to dry, and paints the area to match.
3. Stage 2
At Stage 2, rust intensifies and begins to form the substance known as scale. Scale refers to areas of rust that have progressed to the point that they have begun to penetrate into the surface of the metal. This process leaves behind shards of rust metal - i.e., scale. The formation of scale causes the underlying metal to become pitted and etched, giving it a rough texture.
A professional begins dealing with Stage 2 rust by first removing any scale present. This can be accomplished using a stiff wire brush. Once they remove the scale, they will evaluate the underlying surface. If the metal still remains relatively smooth, it may be sanded, primed, and painted as in Stage 1.
Often, however, the underlying metal will be excessively rough and worn. This may require that the surface is smoothed out using a grinding wheel, and the progressively finer grades of sandpaper. Only once an appropriate degree of smoothness has been achieved may the metal be primed and protected.
Rust Repair Experts
Rust can destroy automobiles and other metal objects much more quickly than you may realize. Therefore, be proactive about having rust removed as soon as possible. If dealt with quickly enough, you can restore the metal with little trouble. For more information, please don't hesitate to contact us at Sam's Welding, Inc.