We love the beautiful, neutral hues that are emphasized on our corten steel fire pits! Many of our customers agree that this weathered look is unique and stunning, and an absolute must have for their outdoor living space! But many of them ask:
This material is actually a high strength steel that is extremely resistant to weathering, despite its seasoned appearance. In fact, COR-TEN™ has been a trademarked name since the 1930s and is used to describe weathered steel. While its primary use has been for architectural structures, railroad cars, and even ornate sculptures (such as London, England's Fulcrum by Richard Serra - 1987), this steel alloy is now used to create decorative outdoor products!
One of the pros of corten steel is that the surface doesn't need to be touched up with paint...ever! Each product details its own uniqueness, with color highlights and variations that are not only esthetically pleasing, but also resistant to rust. In fact, corten steel has a weather resistance that is 4 to 8 times greater than ordinary steel!
The surface of each of our special corten steel fire pits is aged to look as though the product has been in the elements for about a month. Be advised that your new fire pit will have a "rust" layer of residue from the manufacturing process, so we recommend that you avoid touching or sitting on it in order to avoid blemishing the surface (or your clothes). This layer will disappear over a short period of time after it has been exposed to the outdoor elements.
By referencing the color chart below, you will see that the second color swatch shows what the surface will look like at 1.5 months - this is the approximate tone that our fire pits display.
As you can see, this specialty steel will continue to patina over time, aging to a beautiful dark mocha hue. Eventually, it will look more like metal instead of showing off the bright yellow or orange colors that it started with. If you choose to stop the patina process, you can do this quite easily! Simply apply a protective, clear-coat paint to the surface of your corten steel fire pit. This will also alleviate that "rust" layer of residue.
Remember, all outdoor products that go through this type of aging process will be affected by the environment you live in. The air quality and atmospheric conditions of marine areas, metropolitan locations, and arid or mountainous regions contribute differently to the appearance and time it takes for the patina to advance.