Have you noticed any rust marks on your fireplace lately? The reddish-brown oxide forming on parts of your firebox might have caused concern and has you doubting the quality of your purchase.
But rest assured, all metal surfaces will suffer from atmospheric corrosion in time. These are superficial marks only and do not impact the integrity or strength of the steel components that make up your fireplace. With proper care, you can minimize rust forming. And if you already have rust marks on your fireplace, you can remove these to have your fireplace look as good as new.
The speed of corrosion and maintenance will depend on the location of your fireplace and the general use over time.
Rust can occur in areas subject to humidity and is often more noticeable over the summer months when indoor fireplaces are not in use for long periods of time.
With the fireplace in more regular use over the colder winter months, the constant heat promotes a drier, healthier home. It eliminates atmospheric moisture within the house, which is the cause of steel surface discolouring.
Outdoor Fireplaces & BBQs
The steel on your outdoor fire is at the mercy of local atmospheric conditions. Any sea spray in coastal marine areas and inland condensation and humidity will affect the steel carcass when not in regular use and keep moisture levels at bay.
Warmington uses Boiler Grade Steel and 304 Stainless Steel. Both have unique characteristics and specific purposes. For instance, a stainless steel firebox will suffer less corrosion than mild Steel and is therefore recommended for Outdoor Fires in coastal areas. All Warmington outdoor fires are supplied with a stainless steel weathershield. Ensure the weathershield on your Outdoor fireplace or BBQ is always on when the outdoor fire is not in use.
Care & Maintenance
Whilst we can not prevent atmospheric corrosion, we can reduce its effects by recommending the following tips:
– Wipe off any liquid spills immediately.
– Light some newspaper or kindling in the firebox to put warmth into the Steel, then leave the door slightly ajar. This allows air movement to circulate through the firebox. Do this occasionally over the Summer and Spring months when the firebox is not in use for long periods.
To remove rust marks that have already formed, you will need to do the following:
– Use a brush and scoop and clean the inside of the firebox from any ash and debris.
– Prepare the surface by wiping with a scotchbrite pad to remove any fat deposits or onset of rust. You may need to sand it with a fine sandpaper or use a wire brush to remove ingrained corrosion areas. Be careful of scratching smooth surfaces like the freestanding Woodburners’ cooktop or flue areas.
– Use a soft dry cloth and wipe all surfaces. Avoid any liquid cleaning products when cleaning the fireplace’s surface, and never use oven cleaners as they are too abrasive and will damage the painted surface.
– When all affected areas have been wiped and sanded, apply Acetone (don’t use paint thinner or mineral spirits) on a clean cloth to clean the surface before repainting with high-temperature paint.
– Use newspaper and masking tape to mask areas you do not want paint on.
– Avoid painting on a cold surface. Heat the fireplace with a hair dryer or heat gun. (15-30 C’)
– Use paint in a well-ventilated area. Only use approved high-temperature paint available from Warmington. Shake the can vigorously for 2 minutes. Spray onto paper for 2-3 seconds to ensure the paint is coming through the can correctly. Apply 2-3 coats with light strokes. Wait 10 minutes between coats.
– Once the paint has dried, light the fire to ensure the paint cures to the surface for the best protection. The paint will give off fumes and smoke until it is fully cured. Avoid inhaling these fumes and smoke.
We have Maintenance Kits available for DIY fireplace servicing, which has everything you will need to remove rust marks on your fireplace, including the original high-temperature paint used at the time of manufacture. The maintenance kit is supplied in a handy box and is easy to use. It is available to order from Warmington.
If you need more serious repair work, we offer a refurbishing service for our freestanding woodburners at our premises in Auckland. Send us photos by email, and we will give you a quote.
Replacement parts for any Warmington Fire are available. You can order from our Online Shop, or your local retailer. Instructions on fitment and adjustments of replacement parts are in our specification sheets that are available under the specific product on www.warmington.co.nz.