Powder coating: the durable, colourful finish that’s here to stay

Can you spot a powder coated finish?

Think about your home and your daily routine. Now think about your car. Imagine getting into the car and driving to work before calling at the shops, a cinema or a restaurant on the way home. How many times do you think you touched or encountered surfaces with a powder coating? Could you tell? Wherever you find a hard-wearing, apparently painted surface on your daily journey, you may well have in fact seen a powder coated surface.

Extensive use across all sectors

Powder coated surfaces are in use in public and private sector applications from the military to transport, from medical centres to parks and from horticulture to sport. They are vital to planes, trains, electrical goods and office furniture; powder coated surfaces are also used in the manufacture of mobility equipment, lamps, radiators and of course, very visibly in the automotive industry. In short: the powder coating process is an indispensable part of modern manufacturing.

Powder coating surfaces: a popular process from the start

The technology to create powder coating finishes was consolidated during the 1950s and the process has proved to be a winning formula ever since. It’s based on the principle of electrostatic attraction, in this case between the negatively charged particles of the coloured powder compounds that are used and the metal item that will receive the coating. After the particles have attached to the surface, heating the item at between 160 to 200 degrees C for 20 minutes or so converts them into a flow state. After cooling, the result is one of the smoothest, hardest and most appealing surfaces available to us for domestic and industrial use in the 21st century.

Attractive, durable – and more

Powder coating is not simply about visual appeal and endurance. There’s versatility, too. Firstly, there’s the extensive range of colours available. Powder coating experts Edmo, for instance, offer 200 colours as stock items, with a bespoke colour service available as well. The process is relatively inexpensive, too, meaning that there are few surfaces offering the same durability at such a comparatively low price. Specialist coating finishes offer particular benefits such as those used to create anti-bacterial surfaces. Just as important, if not more so, is the fact that unlike liquid finishes containing solvents, the powders are non-toxic. What’s more, much less energy is required during the powder coating process than during those for other surface treatments. It looks as though the versatile powder coating finish will be a major part of manufacturing for a long time to come.