You don’t necessarily need to add a clear top coat if you are powder coating a part or a surface. However, there are a variety of benefits of clear powder coating that can make it a worthwhile investment as part of your project. Whether you choose to use it or whether it’s required for a particular application will depend on the goals you have for the project, as well as any instructions you receive for manufacturing.
Let’s take a look at what clear powder coating is and how it can be advantageous to use in your projects in Washington.
What is clear powder coating?
A clear powder coating is exactly what it sounds like: a layer of clear coat that typically goes on top of existing powder coating. A clear coat can be applied to nearly any color used for powder coating, and most commonly is used as a means of changing gloss levels on the finish, or adding a bit of contrast or sparkle to some solid tone colors (especially when used with metallic powders).
Therefore, a lot of the benefit to using a clear powder coat is purely aesthetic. There’s no denying that an increased level of gloss or some added work on color balance can create a more “finished” looking project.
That being said, there are some practical reasons to consider using a clear top coat when powder coating a part as well.
With those metallic powders, clear coats are commonly recommended as an add-on feature because of the kinds of metals used in the formulation. The metals in the powder might oxidize over time when exposed to moisture, oils or various other elements. The use of a clear top coat will help you avoid this sort of oxidation, which will keep the part or surface in good condition for a longer period of time.
In addition, a clear top coat can simply add an extra layer of protection. Standard powder coating already provides some good protection to a part, and adding the top coat isn’t always going to be necessary. But having one extra layer of coating can go a long way, especially for parts that see a lot of contact with hands or potential moisture.
When applying a clear coat, keep in mind there are some circumstances in which those top coats can result in shifts in the color. These changes might result from the movement of metallic components when the clear coat melts, or if there is a manipulation of the colors that occurs under the clear layer. To avoid these types of issues, always spray a sample piece before starting large-scale production so you can identify any potential problems resulting from use of a clear coat and address those issues before they show up in large batches.
Interested in learning more about the benefits of clear powder coating in Washington? We encourage you to contact the team at Powder Vision Inc. today with any questions you have. We look forward to working with you to make your project the best it can be.