If you have galvanized metal sheets in your home, you know that protecting this type of metal from the elements is difficult because the material contains a protective layer. This layer is referred to as a protective coating. When exposed to moisture, air, light and the elements, this layer will develop a blackening or a silvering effect. Because metal is a precious metal, it’s important that you understand how to protect it from the elements so that it doesn’t degrade over time.
How to protect your metal sheets begins with how you treat the materials. You should never paint them because the fumes from the paint are too toxic. For the same reason, you shouldn’t use any type of heat protectant either. You should also make sure that you always wipe off any excess spray when it rains or there is wind.
If you’re concerned about rust, one of the best ways to stop this process is with an organic rust preventative. One popular ingredient is hydrogen peroxide. It’s available in liquid form and you can apply it to your metal sheets using a cotton ball, damp rag or even a paint brush. The chemical will rust only if you are in direct contact with it, which is why you must wear gloves and a mask while applying it.
To prevent rusting, you may also use a product called muriatic acid. This acid is safe to apply directly to the metal. However, there are potential health hazards associated with this solution. Muriatic acid can cause temporary discoloration or pitting of the skin if it comes in contact with the eyes. This method should also be used with caution because it could quickly turn into corrosive gas if left on the metal for too long.
The final step in learning how to rust a galvanized metal sheet is to try applying a coat of penetrating oil to the affected area. Applying penetrating oil will prevent corrosion from occurring as the process goes on. You can purchase this type of oil at a local hardware store or by renting a pressure washer to make the process easier. All you need to do is spray the oil over the corroded surface, being careful to avoid touching the metal surfaces with your bare hands. After spraying the oil, wait a few minutes and then use a hard-bristled toothbrush to carefully scrub the surface, working from the outside inwards. Be sure to leave enough time between each pass to let the vinegar rust penetrate into the metal.
If the hydrogen peroxide doesn’t seem to be controlling the rusting process, you may need to supplement it with another substance. One popular option is to add a layer of steel wool directly onto the metal sheet. This method works great if you are going from roof to roof. It leaves no space for rust to get in. However, if you are looking to learn how to rust a galvanized metal roof yourself, I would highly suggest you use a pressure washer as opposed to a hard brush, especially if you are going to be using steel wool.