Clearing rust away is an expensive and time-consuming process, especially if you’re a new car owner, and rust problems rarely go away on their own. Fortunately, a rust converter can be a much more convenient way of fixing the issue: you just need to know which ones to choose.
What is a rust converter?
These rust converters usually follow the same kind of system when it comes to handling rust: they react with the rusted materials’ iron oxide and create a black coating that’s supposed to stop it from spreading, limiting how far the rusting can actually go. Once you’ve stopped the rust from spreading,you have a lot more time to fix the problem, and some of the might even be able to “clean” the rusted parts if the oxidisation hasn’t spread too far.A rust converter can come in multiple forms: a liquid rust converted is sprayed or painted on, or can be used to dip the rusty parts in, while a gel rust converted is thicker and drips less. Spray-only rust converter types are thin, but can be applied quickly and come in small, easy-to-handle bottles. Some of them are more practical than others, but they can all work well for dealing with rust in one way or another. There are two types of rust converter: removers, which get rid of the rust from the metal surface,
and encapsulators, which cover it up to prevent spreading but don’t actually get rid of it. Many rust converters will be encapsulators, but not all of them.
Why are they useful?
Rust can develop at almost any time as long as the conditions are right, even if your car is locked up in a garage. It doesn’t matter how new your car is or how recently it was cleaned of rust, since there’s always a chance that some humid weather or a leaky roof can be enough to make the metal start to oxidise. By keeping at least one type of rust converter around, you can avoid rust damage by quickly spraying or painting over the area as soon as you notice the rust starting to form. Some rust converter types can even be used as a preventative measure – if you spray an area that you think will get rusty in the future, you can extend its lifespan, even if you cover over it with car polish or paint. This means that the fresh paint is backed up with a layer of dried rust converter, meaning that it’s much harder for the metal to actually get damaged in that way.
How do I apply it?
First of all, make sure you have a rust converter. It can be a large gel bottle or a small spray can: as long as you have enough of it, you shouldn’t have any problems. Figure out where the rust is located (or, if there’s no rust, where you expect it’ll be in the future) and apply it to the area, making sure that it’s done as evenly as possible. Once it’s all in place, you need to leave it to dry. Drying times can vary depending on the rust converter you’re using. After the rust converter dries, it’s normally a good idea to coat it with polish, paint or something similar. Some of them can be flammable or toxic, depending on the mixture, so avoid touching it or using an open flame nearby unless you’re sure that it’s safe. You can usually tell by looking at the can or container, which should list all of the safety instructions.
Once your rust converter is dry and covered in car polish or paint (which will also need to try), you can usually keep using your vehicle as normal! If you’ve done everything correctly, you shouldn’t run into any more rust problems for a while, especially if the coating has been applied to a wide area to stop even small amounts of rust breaking out. If you’re using it to seal up existing rust, make sure you go and get it repaired if it’s been severe enough to eat through the metal and create holes or weak points. No matter what, rust is still a problem, even if it’s not able to spread.