Aluminum is the most profusely found metal as well as the most used. Its abundant use is because of its unique property of being lightweight and yet immensely strong. It is used in the raw form, more commonly known as mill finish aluminum which is not treated and has a coarseness and a dull finish. When aluminum is anodized or powder coated, these drawbacks are overcome and provide a stronger structure and more beautiful appearance. Let us discuss this in detail in the following sections. We will focus more on anodizing vs. powder coating.
What Is Anodizing?
When the surface of aluminum is covered in oxide, it is called anodizing. This name is given because aluminum is dipped in an electrolyte bath with a cathode that releases hydrogen and oxygen from the metallic surface, turning aluminum into an anode. This electrochemical process provides a much more durable, corrosion-resistant, and attractive anodizing finish to aluminum.
Anodizing Advantage and Disadvantage
Anodizing is much in demand because of the following advantages.
- The anodizing appearance is much neater. There are no mill marks.
- The anodizing layer provides it with an extra protective layer.
- The anodizing layer is resistant to sunlight and ultraviolet lights.
- The anodizing finish is corrosion-resistant and abrasion-resistant.
Like everything, anodizing has a couple of disadvantages as well.
- The anodizing color options are limited.
- The touchup of severely damaged is more visible.
- Only specific grades of aluminum can be used with anodizing finish.
What Products Use Anodizing?
Anodizing is preferred because of its unique quality of being flexible yet strong. It is used in many products, and some of its applications are as under.
|Architectural structures||roofing systems, storefronts, curtain walls, and building exteriors|
|Appliances||refrigerators, microwaves, televisions, coffee brewers, and dryers|
|Building products||commercial and residential buildings like wall switch plates for buildings, vents, patio covers, awnings, bathroom accessories, dust covers, mailboxes, light fixtures, storm doors, and window frames|
|Furniture||tables, beds, and storage cabinets|
|Sporting goods||boats, golf carts, and fishing gear|
|Motor vehicle components||trim parts, wheel covers, control panels, and number plates|
|Jewelry and artwork||Necklaces, earrings, art frameworks, decorations|
What Is Powder Coating?
Powder coating is a type of dry powder, like polyester, is applied to the surface of the aluminum. It is electrostatically spray-,deposited to the surface, and cured in an oven or under ultraviolet light.
Powder Coating Finish Advantage and Disadvantage
There are various advantages and disadvantages of powder coating:
Powder Coating Advantages
- Powder coating gives more options for colors
- Powder coating is environmentally friendly
- The powder coating finish is highly resistant to wear and tear.
- The exterior powder coating can be used in sunlight.
Powder Coating Disadvantages
- The powder coating finish is vulnerable to ultraviolet rays.
- You cannot change the color first applied.
- The powder coating process costs are high.
What Products Use a Powder Coating Finish?
There are numerous products in our daily use that use powder coating finish. A few of them are as follows:
|Powder Coating Application||Products|
|Appliances||sides of refrigerators, ranges, washer tops and lids, dryer drums|
|Household items||lighting fixtures, antennas, and electrical components|
|Everyday items||strollers, cribs, metal toys, lawnmowers, snowblowers, barbecue grills|
|Automotive industry||bumpers, hubcaps, wheels, truck beds, door handles, decorative trim, radiators, truck beds, filters, and numerous engine parts|
|Architectural structures||frames for windows, doors, and modular furniture|
Anodizing Vs. Powder Coating
Let us compare the two:
|The anodizing layer is pretty thin.||The powder coating film is thicker.|
|The variety of anodizing colors is limited.||A variety of beautiful powder coating colors is available.|
|The anodizing finish has excellent resistance to wear and tear.||The powder coating film’s resistance is low to wear and tear.|
|The anodizing cost is much pocket friendlier.||The powder coating cost is slightly expensive.|