Can Powder Coated Metal Still Oxidize?

Powder coating is an excellent way to increase the durability and lifespan of a part. However, powder coating is not always a perfect process. Occasionally you’ll hear about a powder coated part that still rusted and started to peel, even though the process, when done correctly, should eliminate that possibility.

The key phrase here is “when done correctly”—a powder coating job that was performed incorrectly, or a powder coated part that is asked to withstand unreasonable conditions, can create situations in which the part could rust or go bad.

Here are some factors to consider, courtesy of the experts at a powder coating shop in Washington.

Poor application of the coating

Just because you used the right coating does not mean you applied it correctly. A company that does powder coating should never skip any steps or cut any corners. A failure to properly prepare the part by blasting off all the debris or a misapplication of any of the coatings could result in parts going bad, despite the coating.

This is why the blasting process is so important—it gives you a chance to remove any rust or debris from the part before the coating process begins. If there is rust located on the part underneath the coating, eventually it’s going to work its way through the powder—there’s no getting around that.

Exposure to harsh environments and materials

There are some environmental factors that can result in the failure of a powder-coated part. While powder coating makes parts resilient, it can only take so much. Exposing that coating to the wrong chemicals or stress factors can result in that coating being eaten away and permanently damaged.

You should know which chemicals to avoid with powder-coated parts. For example, nylon-based powder coating is susceptible to damage caused by methanol exposure, or by exposure to extremely high temperatures (hundreds of degrees). Exposure to these stress factors will result in the protective powder coat being pulled away.

General wear and tear

While powder coating does make materials highly durable, there is no such thing as an impervious powder coating. If you regularly use these parts and they get a whole lot of wear and tear, eventually they’re going to start to fail to protect the material that was coated. This means you might need to take your parts and reapply powder coatings from time to time, just to make sure they’re going to last for as long as you need them.

If you do reapply a coating, you must make sure you have properly prepared the part, just as you would with a part that has never been powder coated. This means removing the old coating and refinishing the surface to get rid of any potentially problematic particles.

For more information about how to prevent rust and other damage from becoming an issue with your powder-coated parts, we encourage you to contact our powder coating shop in Washington, and we will be happy to provide you with some practical tips.