16 Da Vinci Way, Forrestdale, Western Australia 6112
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Pickling Stainless Steel

At International Corrosion Services, we believe in providing superior services, which is why we have invested in a high technology stainless steel pickling and passivation bath, the largest and best of its kind in Western Australia.

At International Corrosion Services, we believe in providing superior services, which is why we have invested in a high technology stainless steel pickling and passivation bath, the largest and best of its kind in Western Australia.

The bath and process systems ensure all stainless steel is pickled and passivated in full compliance to ASTM A380, ASTM A967 and AS 1627.1 and AS 1627.5.  All treated stainless steel is supplied with a certificate of conformity to the relevant standards.

Pickle & passivation of your stainless steel should be done for post weld treatment and further to that to ensure it is clean from contaminants to ensure you give it has its best chance of resisting corrosion.

By using the ICS pickle and passivation process it ensures your welds post fabrication are treated inside and out so that it restores the stainless steel to allow it to passivate. It also ensures that as part of the process, all surfaces are cleaned from oils, greases, dust and dirt, which gives the stainless steel its best chance of withstanding corrosion.

ICS are equipped to treat stainless steel of all shapes and sizes. Our pickle and passivation bath has the following dimensions: 13 metres long, 1.2 metres deep and 1.5 metres wide. However, using a double dip procedure and/or spray pickling, we have successfully treated pieces up to 25 metres in length. For pieces which are too large or are immobile, we can also provide pickle and passivation services on-site.

Features of our

Pickle and Passivation Bath

• Mixer for circulation of the pickling bath.
• Temperature sensor.
• Electrical heaters.
• Electrical control panel and control units.
• Bath cover/lid (manual handling).
• Fumes exhaust system.
• Chemical filtration.
• Waste Disposal and recycling system.
• 10 tonne and 5 tonne overhead cranes.

Why We Pickle Stainless Steel?

Stainless steel has an extremely thin layer of chromium oxide which is commonly referred to as a ‘passive layer’. This layer provides stainless steel with its corrosion resistant properties. The passive layer of stainless steel can be compromised after welding, destroying the self-passivating properties of your stainless steel. This leaves the steel unable to reform its chromium oxide layer and forms a damaged area referred to as a ‘heat affected zone’. To avoid corrosion from heat affected zones, keeping stainless steel clean helps it perform at its optimal corrosion resistance by being able to self-passivate.

Comparison of heat tint post fabrication before and after dipping in our pickle and passivation bath.

What Is Pickling?

Pickling is the chemical process of removing any high-temperature scale and adjacent low chromium layer of metal from the surface of stainless steel.

Through our many years of experience, International Corrosion Services have found that the optimal method to both descale and remove the heat affected zones is a concentration of hydrofluoric acid. The use of Hydrofluoric acid removes the damaged layer of stainless steel revealing a fresh untainted layer thus allowing it to reform the chromium oxide layer.  Although stainless steel does self passivate after 24 to 48 hours, the passive layer is instantaneously formed using Nitric acid or other oxidizers in the bath.  ASTM A380 specifies that Nitric acid can be used to descale but it is nowhere near effective as using Hydrofluoric acid in removing the damaged layer of stainless steel in the heat affected zone.

Chemical cleaning can be expected to produce superior results. This is because most mechanical methods tend to produce a rougher surface and the detection of obscure surface defects can be difficult to identify.

Why Use ICS Pickling?

The AS 1627, ASTM A380 and ASTM A967 processes are all about cleaning the entire surfaces of the stainless steel inside and out to ensure its optimal corrosion resistance. When practical, a full emersion method in pickling solution is preferred according to ASTM A380. If the size and shape of stainless does not permit other methods such as spraying, swabbing or partially filling the item can achieve the require treatment.

Our pickle and passivation process is tried and proven and is in full compliance to the ASTM A380, ASTM A967, AS1627.1 & 1627.5. All treated stainless steel is supplied with a certificate of conformity to the relevant standards.

Chemical cleaning can be limited by local regulations on environmental and industrial safety, and also by waste disposal problems. International Corrosion Services’ premise has all of the regulatory license and permits, which allows us to use hydrofluoric and nitric acid suitable for most commercial grades of stainless. To read more about our waste handling click here.

Commonly treated stainless steel items include:

• Spools
• Pipes
• Tanks
• Cable Ladders
• Brackets & Fixtures
• Grates
• Panels

Passivation Of Stainless Steel

Electropolishing

Corrosion Managment Control

Products