Instruments are designed for a particular purpose and should be used only for that purpose. Even the strongest instrument can be damaged when used inappropriately, such as when scissors are used to cut wire.
Water and Stainless Steel
Regular tap water contains minerals that can cause discoloration and staining. We recommend using distilled water for cleaning, disinfecting, sterilizing and rinsing. To avoid staining, use a cleaning solution with a pH near neutral (7). Instruments should be placed in distilled water immediately after use. They should never be placed in saline solution, as it may cause corrosion and eventually irreversible damage to the instrument.
When handling instruments, be careful not to damage fine tips and mechanisms. If instruments have been exposed to blood, tissue, saline or other foreign matter, they must be rinsed in warm water before these substances are allowed to dry. Failure to do so may cause rusting. After rinsing, immerse them in a cleaning and disinfecting solution.
Because many compounds, including certain chemicals, are highly corrosive to stainless steel, rinse and dry instruments immediately if they come into contact with any potentially harmful substances. If no ultrasonic cleaner is available, clean the instrument very carefully. Pay particular attention when cleaning box locks, serrations, hinges and other hard-to-reach areas. Use nylon (not steel) brushes and warm (not hot) cleaning solutions.
Once instruments are thoroughly dry, store them in a clean, dry environment. Never put them in areas where chemicals may emit corrosive vapors or where temperature and moisture variations could cause condensation on the instruments.