How to Use a Rust Neutralizer

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What You'll Need
Mask for your nose and mouth
Sandpaper and/or steel wool
Rust neutralizer either aerosol or brush on

It is very easy to use a rust neutralizer and you can save you from replacing many household items both interior and exterior. It also can save and prolong the finish on your automobile. The neutralizer acts as a bonding agent or primer to hold the new paint and also stops more rust from forming. Rust neutralizers come in aerosols and brush-ons.

The commercial grade types for cars are usually applied in a spray chamber with equipment used especially for that purpose. The spray-on type is the most commonly used by do-it-yourselfers and homeowners, and is recommended for mild surface rust. Rust neutralizers chemically react with rust to create a neutral surface that won't rust further and will make it bondable with paint.

Saving the iron and steel items around your home such as railings, mailboxes, lamp posts, flower boxes, lawn furniture and countless other items will save you a great deal of money, so its a product you should become familiar with. They act as a primer to form a bond between the rusted metal and the new paint you will apply.

Step 1 - Clean Thoroughly

Remove as much loose rust as possible with your sandpaper or steel wool. This will enable the rust neutralizer to work better. If you have an electric sander you may also use that. You may also use a wire brush if you have one. The area must be completely clean of dirt, grease and oil.

Step 2 - Apply Neutralizer

Then apply the neutralizer per package instructions and allow it to dry completely. A spray neutralizer will work best on rounded or two sided items such as porch railings or handrails. You should always use an oil-based or lacquer-based paint on top of the neutralizer to make sure the item is sealed. Do not use latex.

Step 3 - Tips

Rust neutralizer, followed by paint should not be applied to things like water tanks or anything that holds water and the rusted area is below the surface of the water. It will not work.

Do not sand the treated area after you have painted it as it will break the seal and bond of the neutralizer and paint and allow moisture to creep in.

Do not apply in direct sunlight as it will not dry properly and will just film over and not create the proper bond.

Do not apply on top of latex paint as it will not bond properly. If latex paint is on the rusted area, all the paint must be sanded off before using the neutralizer. You may also put an oil-based primer over the latex paint to avoid sanding if its a big job.

These products don't work well in areas where there is a salt spray such as near an ocean. Also, if the item is subjected to heavy ice or snow on a routine basis.

Do not use in oxygen rich or pure oxygen areas.