Can Steel Rust?

Ordinary steel can rust if it is left exposed to water and oxygen. If the steel is galvanized, it will not rust, because it is coated with a protective layer of zinc. To prevent rust, you can prime and paint the steel using rust inhibitive coatings. Unfortunately, ordinary primer and paint won’t stick to metal; nor will it prevent rust. For best results, choose a rust-inhibitive etching primer or a similar product that offers some sort of warranty-backed guarantee.

By Jim Dugan
Professional Contractor
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    Tips & Warnings

  • Never use an ordinary latex, acrylic or oil primer on any type of metal.
  • Learn about rust removal from metal before applying any finish coating.
  • Be sure to clean the steel with a degreaser before applying any type of protective coating.

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