Powder-coating is used to create a hard, protective layer that is tougher than conventional paint.
In a nutshell
- Expect a guarantee of up to 25 years for standard power-coating
- After time, Class 1 powder-coating will fade and break down
- 40-60 microns will offer basic protection – exposed locations will needs more
- For a longer life, go up to 100 microns – but this can reduce the fire rating
- Class 2 and Class 3 powders are more resistant to weather and UV light
It has a lot to recommend it – apart from looking good, it can protect aluminium from the elements. But... over time, it will gradually fade and break down.
Nevertheless, you should still expect a 25-year guarantee on standard powder-coating.
A quarter of a century. Sounds great. But the real question you should be asking yourself... is that enough? After all, the buildings on which powder-coated architectural façades appear – car parks, office blocks, hospitals, schools – are designed to last much longer than that.
How to extend the life of powder-coating?
Standard powder-coating is typically applied at a thickness of 40-60 microns, and exposed locations will need more. If you’re looking for a longer lifespan, say 40 years, you’ll need to go for as much as 100 microns (but this can reduce the fire rating).
As well as thickness, it’s important to think about the class of powder – which is used to measure its resistance to weather and UV light.
- Class 1 is the most commonly used and offers standard protection. It’s an economic way to offer protection and visual impact.
- Class 2 keeps its colour and gloss better, and is often referred to as ‘superdurable’. It’s often specified for high-end and landmark buildings.
- Class 3 powders are the most expensive and offer exceptional weathering performance in areas of extreme sunlight and temperature (for example, in the Middle East).
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