I bought some barn steel sheets from a building that had a large fire.
These sheets were on the one section that did not burn, and they are
in good shape except they were really smoked up on the inside and the
very top on the outside. They were really cheap so I figured that
they would work. I'm just building a small 10 foot shed for rabbits
and other small caged animals.
This is a painted steel and the outside is a pale yellow color and the
inside white. I didn't want the inside looking all charred so I took
each sheet and scrubbed them with a scrub brush and Comet. I was
amazed how difficult it was to remove that smoke stain. In fact I
discovered that using plain mud with my brush worked best to remove
the initial smoke stain. Then I rinsed and used the Comet. The very
tops of the sheets were actually slightly charred. The paint did not
burn or blister, but the color was changed to a sort of brown. I
imagine the tops got the extreme heat. That dont matter because I had
to cut off a few feet anyhow. I did manage to get off all the soot,
but there were a few places on the inside white where it actually left
a slightly gray stain on the surface that I could not remove entirely.
I think it went right into the paint, but it's good enough for a shed.
What I dont understand is after all that scrubbing, and I did get the
sheets darn near perfectly clean, and after using a whole container of
Comet (with bleach) on every three sheets, the shed still smells like
smoke. How can that be? I even cleaned inside the ribs. Aside from
that minor staining, on the inside, these sheets are perfectly clean.
It really dont matter because the shed will keep the water off the
animals and thats what matters. I suppose the smell will diminish
over time too. But I still cant imagine what smells when they were
scrubbed so well.