What happens during rusting of an iron nail?The physical and chemical properties of iron nails


Published on:

2024-03-14

Iron nails are fasteners made from high-quality iron wire(Q195/Q235) and are widely used in the construction and carpentry projects. However, untreated iron nails are susceptible to rusting, so it's common practice to galvanize the surface of the iron nails. Galvanized iron nails are effective in preventing rust and are more suitable for long-term outdoor use.

What happens during rusting of an iron nail?The physical and chemical properties of iron nails

 


1. Iron nail meaning

2. 5 physical properties of iron nail

3. Chemical properties of an iron nail

4. Corrosion of iron nails

5. Corrosive effects of nails

6. How to prevent iron nails from rusting

7. Conclusion


1. Iron nail meaning

What are iron nails?

Iron nails are a common type of fastener in our everyday life, used for hanging pictures and other items or for repairing furniture. But do you know exactly what iron nails are? 

Common iron nails are made from iron nail wire,which is a type of wire rod that has been drawn to different wire diameters to fit various needs(such as woodworking and construction), typically made of low-carbon steel. Now that we understand common iron nails are made from wire rods,(q198,q235) many may wonder if common iron nails are a compound. This statement is not accurate. Iron is an element, and since common iron nails are not made from pure iron, the wire rods contain other elements like copper and zinc mixed in. Therefore, it is precise to say that common iron nails are a multi-element mixture with iron as the primary component. 

So, what characteristics do the elements contained in common iron nails bring to the iron nails?

SUNSHINE Group  will explore the advantages of common iron nails from their physical and chemical properties, which make the common iron wire nails the most widely used fasteners over the years.


2. 5 physical properties of iron nail

A. Color: When freshly produced,common iron nails typically have a silver-gray color. However, the untreated common iron nails will gradually develop red rust due to their exposure to moisture and oxygen over time.Rust not only affects aesthetics but can also lead to the loosening of common iron nails, potential building collapse, and other issues.

B. Tensile strength: The tensile strength of common iron nails can vary depending on factors such as the grade of iron used and the manufacturing process. High quality common iron nails typically have a tensile strength ranging from about 300 to 500 megapascals (MPa). The tensile strength enables the common iron nails to come in a variety of sizes and styles to meet your every need. For example, headless iron nails are small in size without round or flat head, making the lost head iron nails very suitable for installing decorations, offering great aesthetic appeal.

C. Hardness: The hardness of common iron nails is typically measured using the Rockwell hardness scale. Iron nails generally have a hardness ranging from about 55 to 65 on the Rockwell scale. The hardness of common iron nails ensures that the iron nails have a good load-bearing capacity, capable of hanging heavy objects, and providing support in the construction projects.

D. Ductility: The excellent ductility of wood nails enables them to be easily driven into materials such as wood while also being less likely to be damaged by external forces during the driving process.

E. Density: The density of common iron nails typically ranges from about 7.8 to 7.9 grams per cubic centimeter (g/cm³). This density gives the common iron nails high strength and durability, making the iron building nails very suitable for use in the construction and woodworking tasks.


3. Chemical properties of an iron nail

It is well known that common iron nails, when left in dark and damp places or used outdoors for extended periods, are prone to rusting.This is because the most notable chemical characteristic of common iron nails is their tendency to react with moisture and oxygen in the air, resulting in iron oxide, commonly known as rust.


4. Corrosion of iron nails

Do you know how do iron nails rust or how does rust form on untreated iron nails?

Exposure to Oxygen and Water: Common iron nails, when left untreated, are typically exposed to oxygen and moisture in the environment. Water acts as a catalyst for the reaction by providing the necessary medium for the chemical reaction to take place.

Formation of Iron Oxide: The iron atoms on the surface of the common construction nail react with oxygen molecules from the air. This reaction causes the iron atoms to lose electrons, resulting in the formation of iron oxide, commonly known as rust. 

Progression of Rust: Once rust forms on the surface of the common iron nail, it can continue to spread, as rust is porous and allows for further penetration of moisture and oxygen. This process accelerates the corrosion of the common iron nail over time, leading to its deterioration.

So when an iron nail gets rusted? Untreated common iron nails are most prone to rusting when exposed to water and oxygen over time.

Is an iron nail rusting a chemical change? Yes the rusting of an iron nail is the chemical reaction.

This chemical change not only alters the appearance of the common iron nails but can also have other detrimental effects. Do you know what the impacts of rusting iron nails are?


5. Corrosive effects of nails

Structural Integrity:  As rust forms on the surface of iron nails, it can penetrate deeper into the iron nails, causing pitting and eventually leading to the iron nails becoming brittle and prone to breakage.

Fastening Strength: Corroded iron nails may lose their ability to securely fasten materials together. Rust can reduce the effectiveness of the iron nail's grip, resulting in loosening or failure of the fastening.

Aesthetic Appearance: Corrosion can negatively impact the aesthetic appearance of materials. When iron nails rust, they develop a reddish-brown discoloration, which may be undesirable, particularly in visible applications such as woodworking or construction.

Safety Concerns: In certain applications, such as construction or carpentry, the corrosive effects of iron nails can pose safety risks. Corroded iron nails may fail prematurely, leading to structural instability or potential injury if materials collapse or become dislodged.

Economic losses : Economic losses can also occur due to rusting iron nails, such as when disposing of damaged common iron nails and purchasing new ones.


6. How to prevent iron nails from rusting   

For construction safety and to reduce economic losses, how can people prevent iron nails from rusting?

It is important to keep the common building nails dry and avoid placing them in dark and damp areas as much as possible. Also, be mindful not to expose the iron nails to acidic solutions, as this can lead to corrosion of the wood iron nails.

The most common methods to prevent common iron nails from rusting are oiling process or galvanization process. When common iron nails are treated with electro-galvanization or hot-dip galvanization, a protective layer of zinc is attached to the surface. This zinc layer effectively shields the common iron nails from oxygen and moisture in the air, preventing rust formation.


7. Conclusion    

Due to the high strength and ductility, common iron nails are well-suited for hanging items or securely fastening various materials together, making the iron nails a common fastener in everyday life. However, untreated iron nails are prone to rusting when exposed to water and oxygen. Rusting can lead to breakage and loosening of the iron nails, potentially causing damage. Therefore, iron nails require regular maintenance and replacement, or you can opt for galvanized iron nails. Galvanized iron nails have a protective layer of zinc on the surface that shields the galvanised iron nails from moisture and oxygen in the air, preventing rust and prolonging the lifespan.

SUNSHINE Group not only sells high-quality iron nails but also offers galvanized iron nails in various sizes. If you have any needs, feel free to contact us.

CONTACT US


You can email us

24-Hour Consultation Hotline

Mobile/Wechat/WhatsApp: 0086-13111516795

Tel: 0086-31185271560

Head office Address

UNIT A RM2521,Wanhao Building NO.176 ZhongHua south street,Shijiazhuang city, Hebei China

Please tell us what you need

Our engineers will contact you within 12 hours and provide free proposal and quotation.

Copyright © 2022 shijiazhuang sunshine imp&exp trade co.,Ltd | License

图片名称