ExSite pan & tilts are made from 316L stainless steel but units are rusting. Is there a problem with the material in my unit?

Issue

ExSite pan & tilts are made from 316L stainless steel but units are rusting. Is there a problem with the material in my unit?

Product Line

Pelco Cameras

Environment

  • ExSite
  • IPSXM

Cause

Rust appearance of product

Resolution

The 316L stainless steel used for ExSite is one of the most stain resistant classes of stainless steel but it is not absolutely rust proof.  In particular corrosive environments, such as in the continuous presence chlorine gases, surface staining may occur, especially when the units are frequently covered in moisture (rain or dew).  The archetypical application for this is on board of seagoing ships.  Despite the passivation and polishing treatment these ExSite units undergo, the traces of iron particles left by the tools used during the manufacturing process may corrode and leave cosmetically displeasing stains.  These are surface only stains that do not affect the protective function of the ExSite unit.  Such surface stains can generally be removed by mild stainless steel cleaners and polishing.  Care should be taken that no harsh abrasives are used to prevent damaging the passivation layer.  The image below shows typical staining patterns for this type of corrosion.