Stainless Steel Features as the main exterior metal of many luminaries; many of us recognise that stainless steel is intrinsically attractive, but these fittings require maintenance like all others. Stainless steel enjoys a strong and enduring reputation for long term appearance and structural integrity. But like all materials stainless steel may become stained or discoloured over time, impairing look. This brown discoloration is referred to as “tea staining”. Tea staining can be defined as discoloration of the surface to stainless steel that does not affect the structural integrity or the longevity of the material.
Tea staining occurs most commonly within about five kilometres of the sea and becomes progressively worse closer to the marine source. However, wind exposure, pollution levels and higher temperatures can create environments where tea staining might occur 20 kilometres or more from the nearest body of seawater. Swimming pool surrounds must also be treated in the same manner, particularly indoor pools. These same factors also increase corrosion rates of alternative materials.
Rough surface finishes promote tea staining; the smoother the surface, the better. Smoother surface finishes stay cleaner between washes and don’t have deep surface grooves where chlorides (salts) and other contaminants can collect and cause staining. Even smooth stainless steel finishes in coastal environments may show tea staining if not washed regularly.
Selecting Stainless Steel Luminaries
Care in the selection of luminaries for any application will avoid problems and disappointment.
Some considerations for selection include; Appropriate Grade selection. Exposure of a particular grade of stainless steel to a more aggressive environment than it can resist will contribute to tea staining. Grade 316 should be selected as a minimum within five kilometres of the sea. The less Expensive grades (Such as 304 or 202) will probably become tea stained or even suffer more severe corrosion.
Prevention- Perform Regular Maintenance
Protecting Stainless Steel from corrosion no longer needs to be a chore as there is now a unique treatment containing CyndanNanolon provides protection for months on end. The stainless steel solution is a two-part rejuvenation and protection treatment providing long lasting protection to all grades of stainless steel. Ideal for the removal and protection of corrosion and “tea staining” on all Grades of internal and external stainless steel.
Using Stainless Steel Rejuvenating Paste- the non-abrasive formula not only clean, removes contaminates and rejuvenates the surface, it also pre-conditions stainless steel for the protective treatment of (step2) Stainless steel sentry- the formulation is PH balanced in order to counter any acidic corrosive residues remaining from previous cleaning products and contaminates. The ph balancing acids in the protection of further “tea staining” and corrosion.
Using Stainless steel Sentry – for all grades of marine and architectural, internal and external Stainless steel. Containing the ultra-protection concentrate NANOLON. The NANOLON concentrate when applied to the preconditioned stainless steel microscopically coats it and protects it for several months depending on the conditions.
The NANOLON concentrate protects stainless steel from atmospheric corrosion which causes unsightly “tea staining” and rusting. This product is designed to be used only in conjunction with Stainless Steel Rejuvenating Paste.