Stainless  Restora‚Äčtion Ltd

Metal Finishing and Surface Engineering Technologies

SRL Technical Library

PICKLING AND PASSIVATION TROUBLESHOOTING  During, following or indeed before the cleaning operation all sorts of strange things can occur as a result of the chemicals used. Our technical library gives a variety of examples that SRL has encountered along its way. This list is by no means complete - these pages will be continually updated as we/you experience other strange phenomena.

Fumes and Toxic Odours

Pickling Fumes and Toxic Odours


Orange/Brown fume cloud which hangs over the job during a pickling operation. I the job is immersed in a pickling bath a low level cloud of fume will hang over the bath. The cloud will break and disperse when the item is removed from the bath. Correct PPE must be worn.

Possible Detriment

There is a real detriment to the health and safety of the operator and indeed the other members of staff working in the area. The operation should be conducted in a separate area isolated from the main shop if possible. If it has to be conducted in the main shop then local fume extraction should first be considered, cordon off the area and then issue PPE clothing to the immediate operators and half face mask respirators for those working within reach of the fume.Note: the fumes do not pour off the job, indeed they tend to hang over and around the job. The natural tendency is to open a door to vent the shop, this will only serve to disperse the fumes and push them around the shop.

If internal surfaces of vessels / tanks are to be pickled using pickling paste care needs to be taken since a rapid and large build-up of fumes will result. Ensure that only trained personnel / operatives are used and that they are qualified in Confined Space Entry procedures.Their is no detriment to the stainless steel surface however if their is mild steel or "black steel" tooling in the vicinity then you may find that a "flash" rusting will appear on the surface. It is prudent to coat these surfaces with a light oil to protect them if rusting is a problem. The use of Avesta 130 "blue one" low fume technology can help reduce this problem.


Conduct in well ventilated area, use trained personnel, use proper PPE and local fume extraction. Use Avesta 130 low fume pickling paste technology.

 See manufacturer application data sheet.

Products  Available

Pickling Products

Cleaning Products

Technical Notes

It is important to follow the instruction given for each individual product used and the advice given in the "product application data sheets" available on line in the product section of SRL Chemical and Analytical Services Ltd.

Information given in this page may be subject to alteration without notice.

Care has been taken to ensure that the contents of this publication are accurate but SRL Site Services Ltd do not accept responsibility for errors or for information that is found to be misleading.

Suggestions for, or descriptions of, the end use or application of products or methods of working are for information only and the company accept no liability in respect thereof.

Before using products supplied or manufactured by the company the customer should be satisfied of their suitability.

If further assistance is required, we have access to extensive research facilities, we will often be willing to help.

Stainless Restoration Ltd, Adamsons Industrial Estate, Hyde SK14 1EE

Stainless Restoration Ltd offer an Electropolishing service to the stainless steel fabrication/manufacturing industry at its newly refurbished fully automated Electropolishing plant at Hyde Manchester.