At Last…A Rust Remover & Rust Proofer
That Works On The Source of The Problem.
Looking after rusty steel railings and gates etc is not a fun pastime, and if you have rust to deal with, you can either waste your money and time “treating” it in the conventional way which sees the rust return in 6 months or so or… you could opt for a proven product as used by top professional painters which results in a job that lasts Up to 5 years or Longer.
Here you will see a step by step rust removal / rust proofing job from start to finish.
(With kind permission of the owners)
These railings are about 92 years old & heavily rusted. Much of the rust is in hard to get at joints and in several places the steel is gone past repair so we did the best possible in the circumstances.
What causes Rust in the first place?
It helps to understand what causes rust, so here’s a brief explanation. It comes about when moisture and air (oxygen) come into direct contact with exposed steel. What begins as a tiny spec of rust will gradually spread, and over time, if left untreated, will eventually destroy the steel. Rust is very difficult to stop, especially in all those tiny hidden crevices etc as you will see in the two pictures directly above.
The Solution…..Stopping Rust for the longest possible length of time.
There is only one way to control rust effectively and that is to take away its food or put another way…remove all traces of moisture and air from the rust’s pores and keep them out as long as possible in the most appropriate way.
Owatrol Oil is a rust remover / rust proofer solution, well known and highly respected in industrial, marine, painting and automotive applications over 76 years.
OK, so lets show you how this works... step by step from begininning to end.
First step was to remove the lumpy rust seen above. This can be done in two ways…
A: Chip off rust directly as shown below. (Eye protection recommended) Use a good stiff scraper like shown. A chipping hammer or welders hammer is also useful to loosen up the bigger bits. For commercial applications you may choose to use a power tool, a pneumatic needle descaling gun or sand blast to speed up this process.
Note: You only need to remove all LOOSE or lumpy rust… any tight / solid rust may be left there because it will become part of the restored job. After descaling, brush away all loose bits with a dry paintbrush etc. Wire brush the metal if need be for a better finish.
Rust scale should be thoroughly removed using a good scraper.
A chipping hammer will helpbreak down the tougher bits
B… If you want to make life a bit easier, (will cost a bit more) you could soak the rust ‘crust’ and all suspect areas with Owatrol oil to loosen it up. Apply a good coat of Owatrol Oil to a ‘manageable’ section at a time [see 2 images below], leave to soak for about 2 hours (max) and the oil will make the descaling process much easier and faster. If the railings are badly damaged & delicate this method will cause the least damage to the remaining steel.
Note: If you are working railings etc which are mounted on granite etc and you don’t want oil dribbles marking the stone, cover with plastic and duct tape at the base. Make sure you don’t forget to treat the steel all the way down to where it ‘enters’ the stone or concrete. Apply some Owatrol especially where the steel enters the stone to drive out moisture in that crevice and protect it. (Wipe away any spills of Owatrol with white spirit while still wet)
Note: It is imperative to pay special attention to all joints, crevices etc because if not done properly, those places provide a hiding place for moisture and air and the re-emergence of rust sooner rather than later.
After the rust scale has been removed, using a paint brush, apply a saturation coat of Owatrol oil and leave overnight. [Wipe / brush off excess or ponding] This must be applied to ALL the metal INCLUDING the parts that look OK. The reason for this is because the Owatrol will find and deal with pin holes or ‘baby rust’ that, left untreated, will spread and become “new rust” later. Important Note: If weather does not allow you get back to this next day – don’t worry, the Owatrol Oil will suspend the entire operation keeping rain etc out for weeks if necessary!
All loose scale removed Apply liberal coat of Owatrol Oil
The reason you should saturate the steel with Owatrol is because the Owatrol Oil will soak into all places moisture or air might get into and in fact, if air or moisture is present, the Owatrol Oil will drive them out taking their place within the steel / rust pores where it will dry into a varnish-like yet flexible membrane that can over painted with a finish (oil based – black gloss for example) or better still, with a metal primer next (as used in this case history Step 3) followed by a finish.
The images below help to illustrate the effect of Owatrol Oil applied to steel per above method. Image on left shows how rusted surface absorbs rain while image on right, the steel surface being already “full” of Owatrol oil leaves no room for water or air to get in.
NOTE: Brush out any Owatrol Oil that does not soak in because it will skin and dry unevenly. Example.. picture just above right, good coat of oil applied, much of that will soak in as intended - just remove or move on any excess oil.
This is the best practice but if you want a quicker but still a good job compared to all other methods – skip Step 3 and go directly to Step 4.
OK, you have descaled all the loose rust lumps and flakes so now its time to put the meat in the sandwich, i.e. apply a good coat of metal primer to add extra protection by building up the paint film.
Obtain a good quality oil based metal primer and add about 30% Owatrol Oil to the primer. Reason for this is because the Owatrol Oil will loosen the primer and enable it to ‘flow’ into tiny places where it otherwise will not get into as it can be too heavy. I would suggest a grey primer because it ‘shows up’ well all places covered or more to the point… any bits missed will be easier to see.
Add Owatrol to grey primer Apply grey primer
Note on WHY Owatrol Oil is useful when mixed with metal primers:
Metal primers are usually thick, heavy and do not get into small places very well. In the image just above you will see one single drop of metal primer on a piece of rusted steel... note how the drop of paint stays put and does not spread very well. On the other hand, you will observe that a similar sized drop of the same primer with about 25% Owatrol Oil added spreads out to many times the area covered by the primer used neat. This spreading action is what makes it crawl into the tiniest of places and makes for a superb protection and even protective coverage.
Step 3 continued
Next, apply a coat of the grey primer on top of the previously applied (and dry) Owatrol’d metal and make sure you get it into every joint and crevice. Pay special attention to complex scrolls, joints and where vertical railings protrude through flat sections because they are the main places rust develops. Look over the complete job to make sure you have not missed any little bits.
Above two pictures show a section that was descaled, one good coat of Owatrol Oil was applied (left image) and left overnight. Next day, a coat of grey primer with Owatrol (per Step 3 above) was applied and left to dry.
Owatrol Oil and Gloss paint. Section finished with Gloss
After the primer is dry, railing is ready for a finish coat [above right], (or two finish coats if you want a longer lasting job) in this case a coat of black gloss (oil based) is applied using a brush and a mini roller for the easy bits.
Note: Owatrol Oil should be added to the gloss at about 10% or enough to make the gloss flow out nicely.
The above examples all relate to steel railings but a similar method can be applied on countless other rust scenarios with equally effective results.
Other Applications for Owatrol Oil
The above 3 or 4 step process is a long lasting and highly economical way to restore a vast array of rusty metal from classic & vintage vehicles, machinery etc. Narrow boats, hay sheds, farm machinery, oil or slurry storage tanks, steel gutters, etc all can be treated very effectively with the steel railings procedure as outlined above.
A big application for Owatrol Oil is farm buildings & machinery. Owatrol oil is superb on rusted galvanised sheeting, girders etc. Owatrol also stops the paint peeling and can be mixed with any Oxide paint (oil based). Please feel free to contact us for detailed guidance on this matter.
Owatrol Oil is ideal to keep rust away after sand blasting.
Works on inaccessible rust also.The picture below shows another very useful aspect / benefit of Owatrol Oil. The steel hinge attached to the wooden door has also rusted at the back between the hinge and the wood. Solution… apply Owatrol oil at the top of the steel hinge and allow it to soak down the back where it will drive out all trapped moisture and air and stops the rust without removing the steel.
Makes a beautiful natural clear / rustic finish on metal
If you want a lovely natural, colourless look on steel use Owatrol Oil neat.
You can also add a little oil based colour if you want to ‘stain it’ with colour.
You can get some amazing effects using this formula.
Other Amazing Applications for Owatrol Oil
It is also possible to mix Owatrol oil as you’ve read above with any colour oil based paint or even varnish and use them like a penetrating stain. In this case mix Owatrol with the paint up to a ratio of 50% or even all the way up to 90% in which case you will have a deep penetrating coloured stain that will not peel off. Ideal on concrete floors, patios, even terracotta pots etc.
Owatrol oil is available in 4 convenient sizes:
Owatrol Oil Small (500ml)
Owatrol Oil Medium (1L)
Owatrol Oil Large (5L)
Owatrol Oil X-Large (20L)
Customers Please Note:
We are presently upgrading this website to make it easier to navigate etc and shopping cart cart is temporarily unavailable. If you wish to order Owatrol, C.I.P. or Owatrol Aluminium online now, please do so on our sister website www.upkeepers.co.uk. Thank you for your patience.
Other Useful Rust Related Owatrol Products.
As mentioned above, if you are removing rust and need to top coat with any non-oil based paint you will need to use Owatrol CIP as a primer / barrier coat. CIP can also be used as a primer on new steel. If you have car rust & you want to finish with non-oil car paints, you will need to have a coat of CIP between the Owatrol Oil and the final paint finish.
Owatrol CIP is available in 2 sizes (larger size possible as special order)
Owatrol CIP (500ml)
Owatrol CIP (2.5L)
Owatrol Aluminium RA 85 is based on Owatrol Oil and is an amazing finish on metal as well as virtually any other substrate from wood to concrete to plastic or glass! It is superb on railings as a finish where you like a silvery appearance. One interesting aspect of RA85 is the fact that is expands and contracts in varying temperatures so lasts for years without cracking. It is ideal on truck wheels etc. It is possible to apply Owatrol Aluminium directly on to tight rust without any other preparation. If you wish you can apply any other colour oil based paint / colour over the Aluminium if you change your mind.
Owatrol Aluminium RA85 (500ml)
Owatrol Aluminium RA85 (2.5 L)
Got Rust Stains on walls, stone, wood etc?
Wash away ugly rust stains in 30 minutes or less with another Owatrol product called Net-Trol. Note: Apply Owatrol oil on to the source of the rust to stop further staining. Paint per steps above for best results.
The above pictures show rust stains / streaks that are hard to get rid of usually. Not any more!
Net-Trol cleaner will completely remove those ugly rust stains inside 30 minutes. When you wash away the rust stains, apply Owatrol Oil to the source of the rust to stop further staining. For an even better job, follow steps above. Pop over to Solution Quickfinder > How to clean decking and there you will find Net-trol.