Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 08-03-2002, 08:40 AM   #1
2 Rivet Member
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 66
Images: 171
Question Question about white aluminum oxide deposits

Anyone got any solid advice about what to do with the white aluminum oxide (I think that's what it is) that is on the inside of the outer skin in several places? Is there a product recommended to clean up this? I dont want it to spread...

I'll check back later today

Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	front innner near side shell back on.jpg
Views:	651
Size:	12.2 KB
ID:	381  

WBCC #8048
1958 18Ft Traveller
Los Angeles CA
williamhenshall is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2002, 08:02 PM   #2
4 Rivet Member
niftypkg's Avatar
1971 27' Overlander
Cornville , Arizona
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 313
Unhappy Aluminum Oxide deposits

William. I removed some of these deposits using a bathroom tile mineral deposit remover and scrubing with steel wool. The one I used was 'Eliminate' from HD. However they were not as pronounced as shown in your pix. Try scraping the heavier stuff off and then applying the cleaner. Let me know.

niftypkg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2002, 09:18 PM   #3
Rivet Master
BobbyW's Avatar
1965 20' Globetrotter
Currently Looking...
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 1,002
Images: 9
Visit your local motorcycle store. Aluminum oxidation is a motorcycles worst enemy. It can really ruin the looks of cast aluminum heads and cases. The show bike guys know all the tricks. They have all kinds of products to remove the oxidation and they are safe for aluminum. I would not use any of these on the outside, but the inside would be fine.

AIR# 123

-"You want to make it two inches - or, if you're working in centimeters, make sure it's enough centimeters for two inches."-Red Green
BobbyW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-20-2002, 09:20 PM   #4
4 Rivet Member
83Excella's Avatar
1983 27' Excella
Airstreamville , Kansas
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 410

Looks like corrosion to me and you will need to eliminate it or it will return, getting in the corners will be tough but try covering it with some POR-15 silver after you clean it up. You can use 'red' scotchbrite if you cant sand blast it using glass beads not sand.

83Excella is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2002, 11:04 AM   #5
Rivet Master
Road Ruler's Avatar
1973 23' Safari
St. Catharines , South Western Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 2,336
Images: 39
aluminum corrosion


We had a Coleman Rio Grande pop up for years. In the late fall coming up from Virgina Beach we got caught in a few snow storms coming through Buffalo and Pennsalvania with lots of salt on the roads. A couple of years later I noticed holes and white blistering coming through the "aluminum" door. We kept the trailer washed and polished so I was surprised to see the problem. I completely disassembled the door and found the 1/4 inch hardboard inside soaked with moisture. The aluminum panel on the insde looked just like your photo. I replaced the hard board with new that I painted with marine paint and brushed on a coat of "Rust Check" rust prevention solution on the damaged aluminum.
This seemed to stop the corrosion problem.

Note that rust check in a sealed envierment will not dry out and will repel oxygen and moisture which is the enemy along with salt.

I have been using the "Rust Check" and "Crown" products on all of out vehicles for the last 18 years. I buy the liquid and spray it on myself with gun and compressor. It works!
Airstreams..... The best towing trailers on the planet!
Road Ruler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2002, 03:50 AM   #6
Rivet Master
53flyingcloud's Avatar
1984 29' Sovereign
Savannah , Missouri
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 3,446
Images: 17
Blog Entries: 1
Send a message via ICQ to 53flyingcloud Send a message via Yahoo to 53flyingcloud Send a message via Skype™ to 53flyingcloud
Cool white aluminum oxide

"Waste not, want not"
deposit in your local Airstream Bank.
WBCCI 5292 AIR 807
NEU #64
New England Unit
53flyingcloud is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2002, 05:44 PM   #7
1 Rivet Member
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 6
Oxidation removal

Another marine product might work well here. It's called Ospho, and is merely a mild solution of phosphoric acid. Available at marine, and some hardware stores. At hardware stores, look in the paint dept. Ospho is often used as a rust fixative before painting. Once you remove that corrosion, you need to determine the source as stated above, to make sure its stopped or it will eventually eat thru the skin. Also, as stated above, its a good idea to coat the area with one of the products others have mentioned.
otha1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2006, 06:51 PM   #8
3 Rivet Member
Auretrvr's Avatar
1983 31' Airstream310
Iowa City , Iowa
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 222
Odd place for this corrosion...

We have removed all of the padded storage doors that are along the twins in our '83 310 motorhome (as well as the ones under the sofa). I am going to recover them. When I removed the screws and vinyl coated aluminum that is attahced to the padding board. I found a white powder that rubs off with my finger only on the pieces adjacent to the freshwater tank. There is no evidence of leaks in the area. These had been covered over once, ten years ago, and they used regular staples to afix the fabric to the boards on all of the doors. I am guessing that the tank has some condensation at times. Is it possible that the moisture, combined with the staples caused the corrosion? I noticed that the sofa was stapled with copper staples to avoid rust and had planned to use those on the doors. Now I wonder if copper reacts too. It will never show, but if this is a little thing that could become a big thing, I want to deal with it. On the other hand, it has been there since the last renovation and I'd never have known had I not looked. What do you think?

(No signs of such powder anywhere else. Whew!!)
Airstream OCD...there is no cure!
1983 Classic 310 Motorhome.
AIR 15765

Auretrvr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2006, 08:33 PM   #9
Rivet Master
Aerowood's Avatar

1971 21' Globetrotter
Arvada , Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 2,684
Yep its corrosion alright. The only way to clean this up properly is to remove the panel from the trailer. Glass bead blast as already stated then clean with Alumiprep, (acid etch), alodine, then prime. This will need to be done to all the mating parts also. It would probably be best to just replace the panels and attaching channel. Corrosion like rust is a cancer to alumnium and unless its completly removed and the area nuturalized, no amount of scrubbing cleaning and good intensions will stop the process unless it is properly delt with. I've got this on my trailer and the skin and attach channel is going to be replaced.

Aerowood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2008, 12:22 PM   #10
4 Rivet Member
vhord's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 375
Images: 96
Aluminum Jelly?

Has anyone tried Duro Aluminum Jelly
Loctite Consumer Retail Products | Home Repairs & Home Improvement Projects

Their web site states that it

Restores and brightens dull, oxidized aluminum in minutes
Quickly and easily removes layers of "white rust," dirt and grime -- simply brush on and rinse off

I have a few small areas inside the outer skin. Left untreated but dry will it eventually corrode through to the outside? Over what approx. length of time?

My thoughts are that if it did eventually shows its face from the outside couldn't I just as easy replace a section of outer skin then as now.
vhord is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2008, 12:37 PM   #11
3 Rivet Member
olddog299's Avatar
1990 25' Excella
Currently Looking...
Glenburn , Maine
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 142
Originally Posted by Auretrvr
{snip} Is it possible that the moisture, combined with the staples caused the corrosion?

Originally Posted by Auretrvr
I noticed that the sofa was stapled with copper staples to avoid rust and had planned to use those on the doors. Now I wonder if copper reacts too.
Yes. In fact, two dissimilar metals and a tiny electric current in the presence of a eutectic (salt) = storage battery and you have corrosion. Hence the use of a sacrificial anode in the hot water tank...


AIR 22828
Universal Address: 97XX5 QGG5Z
Longitude: -68.814136
Latitude: 44.894663
olddog299 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2008, 12:44 PM   #12
Rivet Master
Aerowood's Avatar

1971 21' Globetrotter
Arvada , Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 2,684
Same reply as in the post #9 above. It all depends on how deep your current corrosion is. It doesn't take to long to remove .032 of skin.

Aerowood is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Interior Aluminum Replacement swebster Upholstery, Blinds, Walls & Interior Finishes 34 02-24-2005 09:14 PM
aluminum question MsLed Ribs, Skins & Rivets 12 01-15-2003 09:21 PM
believer in aluminum tanks! JohnGalt48 On The Road... 7 08-15-2002 05:49 PM
Question re how to cut aluminum sheeting and get a clean edge... williamhenshall Ribs, Skins & Rivets 7 06-12-2002 05:58 PM
White water tank cleaning... Andy R Fresh Water Systems 9 05-17-2002 08:14 PM

Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2015 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:46 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.