Manufacturers and machine shops rely on powder coating daily to enhance the properties of the metal goods they create. Powder coating is a dry finishing process used throughout many industries to add a durable, high-quality finish that protects metals from environmental conditions and prolongs product life.
Powder coatings consist of resins combined with additives such as pigments, leveling agents, curatives, and flow modifiers processed into a flour-like consistency, then applied to a metal substrate by electrostatic spray deposition. This blog post will discuss the powder coating process and its associated costs.
Powder Coating Cost Considerations
Quoting the cost of powder coating has more variables than other finishing processes, such as painting. It isn’t just the square footage that impacts cost, though it is fair to say that a larger surface area will drive up the price of the job. Some other factors that will affect the overall estimate include:
- Color. Special colors, metallics, and color matching to an existing tint can be more expensive than some standard colors.
- Specific gravity. The specific gravity impacts the coverage per pound. Industry standards assume a solid-to-liquid density ratio of one, though that density may vary between colors.
- Thermoset vs. thermoplastic. As more durable and more heat-resistant materials, thermoset plastics cost more to powder coat than thermoplastics.
- Thickness of the powder coating. Thicker coatings require additional material, which drives up costs.
- Prep time. Previous coatings or the size, cleanliness, and geometric complexities of the part will all impact preparation time. Longer preparation times will result in higher costs.
- Number of items. Higher volumes gain economies of scale on setup and material costs, which helps to lower the cost per coated item.
Is Powder Coating Worth the Cost?
Powder coating has a higher upfront cost than wet painting, which might make the process intimidating for some projects. If you’re considering an investment in powder coating, here are some of the benefits powder coating has to offer over standard wet paint:
- Corrosion protection. Most metals are prone to oxidation. Applying a powder coating protects the metal from oxidation and corrosion by creating a tough, virtually impenetrable barrier.
- Sustainability. Powder coating is more environmentally friendly than most paints. It has negligible levels of VOCs and no waste to affect groundwater or runoff. Preventing corrosion also reduces long-term waste from rusted products that can no longer be used.
- Longer lasting. Paint or metal sealants must be reapplied periodically to maintain coverage and preserve the look of the metal. In contrast, powder coating requires only a single, long-lasting application.
- No fading or color change. The color in paint fades and changes over time and exposure to the elements. Powder coating will remain the same color without fading, preserving aesthetics and resale value.
Quality Powder Coating is Worth the Investment
Powder coating is a widely used process for a reason. It provides a virtually impenetrable coating to prevent rust and oxidation while providing appealing color and finish. Not only does it resist fading and color change, but this long-lasting protective coating is more environmentally safe than paint. Powder coating applied by a qualified expert means you only have to do it once.
For the highest-quality powder coating services, turn to the experts at Pyramid Fab & Finish. Our powder coating capabilities extend to a variety of metal components, including metal enclosures, brackets, boxes, and frames in many colors, finishes, and textures. We also offer cost-saving services, including in-house design and manufacture of custom racking systems for optimal line density and custom masking fixtures to meet complex masking requirements.
To see how we can help with your project, please contact us today.