Unless you’re in the powder coating business, you’re probably unaware that not all powder coats are created equal. For instance, the powder coating on your metal patio chairs isn’t the same quality that’s used to paint railings at football stadiums. The American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) is the authority that determines the ratings for different kinds of powder coats. Powder coating comes in three different ratings. They can be rated as AAMA 2603, AAMA 2604, or AAMA 2605.
The AAMA does rigorous testing on these coats to determine how well these paints will last over a period of time. They measure many different factors but the big ones are; color retention*, gloss retention, and the thickness of the paint after it dries. They also do “accelerated testing” to see how well the coats stand up against salt spray and humidity.
*Acceptable levels of color retention are defined by the AAMA.
This is the most basic type of powder coating. It’s typically used inside of buildings to paint things like ceiling tiles and the inside of window sills. It’s not meant to withstand extreme outdoor conditions for very long, but it will protect against wear and tear like scuff marks better than regular paint.
- Color retention: The AAMA doesn’t recommend using 2603 for the powder coating process in Preston, WA on materials that need to retain color over a long period of time. Their estimate says that it will begin to fade after one year of use.
- Gloss retention: There is no specification for gloss retention for 2603 rated paint.
- Thickness: To achieve a 2603 rating, paint must be a minimum of 0.8 mm.
- Accelerated testing: 2603 rated paint must withstand 1,500 hours of salt spray and humidity abuse before becoming damaged.
AAMA 2604 rated paint is an intermediary level of powder coating. Experts say it should be used for high traffic areas such as on doors or storefronts because of its durability.
- Color retention: 2604 rated paint must maintain an acceptable level of color change over 5 years.
- Gloss retention: After 5 years, 2604 paint must retain 30% of its gloss.
- Thickness: To achieve 2603 rating, paint must be a minimum of 1.2 mm.
- Accelerated testing: 2603 rated paint must withstand 3,000 hours of salt spray and humidity abuse before becoming damaged.
The toughest powder coated paint on the market is the AAMA 2605. Huge buildings (like stadiums) require 2605 for powder coating process in Preston, WA because the paint is able to withstand harsh conditions for a long period of time before repainting is required.
- Color retention: 2605 rated paint must maintain an acceptable level of color change over a 10-year span.
- Gloss retention: Fifty percent of the paint’s gloss must be maintained after 10 years.
- Thickness: To achieve 2605 rating, paint must be a minimum of 1.2 mm.
- Accelerated testing: 2605 rated paint must withstand 4,000 hours of salt spray and humidity abuse before becoming damaged.
Call us at 425-222-6363 to find out how we can help you decide which powder coat you need for your building.