What are powder coatings? Despite their widespread use, most people don’t really know what powder coatings are. Powder coating is a painting process that involves using dry powder, which is applied in a free-flowing method. It is gaining popularity in the painting industry because this technique provides improved finishing results.
Rather than being applied through an evaporating solvent, the powder is administered electrostatically before being cured under heat. This finishing procedure has been appreciated so in many industries that the worldwide market value is expected to reach $12.48 billion by 2020.
This coating is made up of polymers, pigments, curatives, flow modifiers, leveling agents, and other additives. The ingredients are mixed by melting them in an industrial mixer. The mixture is then cooled and broken into small fragments. The fragments are then grounded and sieved to make a uniform powder. The powder is put in a spray gun, which will apply a negative charge to the powder particles, causing them to be attracted to the material that is painted. When the coating has reached its desired thickness, the material is put in a curing oven to gel the powder.
Chemical and Physical Properties of Powder Coating
The powder used in the coating has a particle size in the range of 2 to 50 microns. The powder particles are cured at 200 degrees Celsius, but it has a softening temperature of 80 degrees Celsius and a melting temperature of 150 degrees Celsius. The melting process performed for 10 to 15 minutes.
This coating emits a few volatile organic compounds (VOCs) because no carrier fluid evaporates from the powder. This makes this option more environmentally friendly and far less harmful to one’s health than other options. Powder coating is mainly used on products that require thick coatings and is not easily applied in a thin film. However, using a spray gun that has a narrow nozzle helps to release thin films.
Why Use Powder Coating
At this point, you understand the purpose of powder coating and its properties. Therefore, the next question is: why use powder coating? Powder coating is advantageous in various ways. First, you can make design effects within a single layer. Put your desired powder colors in the spray gun, apply, and then cure them all together. The colors will perfectly blend on the material that you are painting. As mentioned earlier, no or little VOC is released to the atmosphere from powder coatings as they contain no solvent. Therefore, there’s no need to buy finishers, as the powder coating will give you a professional finish.
When you use the best powder coating, the cure time is significantly less as compared to liquid coatings. It is advisable to get a sandblasting service to smoothen the hard surface allowing the heat used during curing to penetrate the material quickly. Getting a sandblasting service also helps improve the durability of the powder coating as it improves the adhesive properties of the material to the powder coating. This makes the coating withstand fading, climate change, chipping, corrosion, abrasions, and scratching.
Sandblasting services help clean a hard surface giving a clean finish even in the corners. Therefore, combining sandblasting services and powder coating is a trick that everyone should be using. Applying powder coating on a clean surface ensures that every part of the material has been covered uniformly.
As mentioned earlier, powder coating is efficient in giving thick films than liquid coatings. The unique part of this is that it does not run or sag as other conventional liquid coatings do. Another advantage is that powder coating uses environmentally friendly ingredients, allowing for greener business practices. It also does not emit effluents, which means that it does not cause pollution.
Many people in different industries appreciate the results of powder coating and sandblasting services. Painting plays an important role in the appearance of the material that is being painted. This ultimate guide helps you understand powder coating and the advantages that it will offer you.