The Benefits of Using Powder Coatings for Architectural Applications
Since its introduction in the 1960s, powder coating has become popular for a wide variety of applications. It currently represents over 15% of the industrial finishing market, as it provides the means to create attractive yet hard-wearing protective finishes on plastic and metal surfaces alike.
Powder coating is also frequently used to finish hardwood, medium-density fibreboard (MDF), and other wood-based products such as doors, cabinets and furniture. Regardless of the substrate, the powder coating process typically involves preparing a powderized blend of polymer resin, pigments, curatives, leveling agents, and certain other additives. The powder is applied via electrostatic spray-assisted vapor deposition to create a thin yet uniform finish. Once it is coated, the product is next cured to induce the production of long molecular chains. This high cross-link polymer network is exceptionally dense, doesn't break down easily, and provides excellent resistance against abrasion and other types of damage. (In much simpler terms, powder coated wood is sprayed with chemicals and then baked.)
If you're considering using powder coating for your own architectural purposes, then you no doubt wonder which kinds of benefits you can expect from the process. As an American wood and masonry coating manufacturer, here are the chief advantages we have confirmed that powder coatings offer!
Powder Coatings Are Durable
Powder coating creates a far more rugged finish than any paint product is capable of. Although their application methods vary depending on the nature of the substrate, powder coatings are extremely resilient to abrasion, impact, heat, humidity, stains, corrosive chemicals, and the sun's ultraviolet light. Better yet, the 0.005–0.007" thick bonded coverage does not require adhesives that could bubble or otherwise fail. Unlike laminate, a seamless powder coated surface lacks edge banding that could peel, chip or otherwise exhibit damage over time.
Its superior durability makes powder coating optimal for any wood surfaces you may frequently come into contact with, as well as those which must withstand constant exposure to harsh weather.
Powder Coatings Are Customizable
If you can imagine a color, then that color can appear on a powder coating. Powder coating providers typically only require a swatch, Pantone Matching System (PMS) number or Reichs-Ausschuss für Lieferbedingungen (RAL) code in order to create a finish that satisfies your exact color requirements. You may additionally request your powder coating to possess any gloss level your architectural project calls for. And because powder coating covers the entire surface area of the treated product, there is no need to color match any part of it.
Powder Coatings Are Cost-Effective Without Mass Production
Veneers and laminates commonly require mass production in order to be cost-effective. Powder coating, however, is not bound by this limitation. A single powder formulation can be uniformly applied to any number of differently shaped and sized objects in rapid succession, and changing the application's color does not require changing out parts. Although large runs of MDF parts are generally more economical, little productivity is lost by running multiple combinations of small, mismatched parts through the spray booth.
Powder Coatings Are Affordable
To be certain, powder coating is not the cheapest finish available. The treatment's price tag typically exceeds that of melamine, and is on par with high-pressure laminate. That said, powder coating often costs significantly less than paint and most types of veneers. The cost of powder coating depends heavily on the nature of the project, including the size and number of the pieces being treated, but it is considered by most not to be prohibitively expensive for architectural applications.
Powder Coatings Are Environmentally Friendly
Powder coatings are one of the most environmentally friendly solutions to finishing all metal brackets, truss brackets, metal railings, exterior lighting, post caps, and most exterior metal on the market. They are non-toxic and contain negligible concentrations of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), thus virtually eliminating air pollution during their application and minimizing health risks. Unlike paint, powder coating application does not produce hazardous byproducts or require special disposal methods. Powder coating produces very little waste in general; if excess powder is sprayed prior to the curing stage, it can easily be collected and reused. Finally, powder coating poses no threat of spillage that could pollute the environment!
Lovitt's Coatings specializes in producing high-quality stains and sealers for log homes, cabins and other wooden structures. However, many of our clients are best served by additionally incorporating powder coating into their architectural projects. If you would like to learn more about how our products can complement any living space that also includes powder coating, then our friendly and knowledgeable team is always available to answer your questions. We welcome you to contact us today!