A method of removing chloride ion, a compound thereof, or flash rust (metal oxide) from a surface contaminated with chloride. The method includes the steps of providing a surface contaminated with chloride ion, a compound thereof or flash rust, and applying a dilute aqueous solution containing an active agent selected from the group consisting of an amine, anionic surfactant, organic carboxylic acid, organic sulfonic acid, and mixtures thereof to the surface in an amount sufficient to remove substantially all of the chloride ion, compound thereof, or flash rust from the surface.
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