Things You Should Know About Automotive Powder Coating

Nowadays, if you’re looking to protect a car’s metal components, look no further than that old mainstay: powder coating. Powder coating is hard to beat when it comes to dependability and visual appeal. While it started as a more economical solution to wasteful paint-coating, automotive powder coating has really gained a solid foothold in various industries. A quick internet search for ‘how to powder coat a car’ will return countless results.

What is Powder Coating?

Powder coating is a more efficient, less wasteful, and less toxic alternative to the original practice of paint-coating metal components to prevent damage. Modern powder coating is typically applied in a controlled environment using an electrostatic spray gun.

Pros of Powder Coating

Powder coating is extremely durable and able to resist the effects of various contaminants which would otherwise damage the metal underneath. It is also environmentally friendly, does not contain harmful VOCs, and does not require thinners or clean-up. The overall operational cost of powder coating is also quite low, and this, combined with the product’s durability, makes it a very cost-effective part of business.

Cons of Powder Coating

While there aren’t many, powder coating does have its drawbacks. Thermoset and thermoplastic materials can easily become contaminated with foreign substances if not kept properly sealed and well away from potential hazards. Powder coatings are not hydrophobic, which means that while smooth to the touch, powder coated wheels, for instance, will still attract grime and road debris. There’s also the matter of the initial investment cost. While the overall day-to-day operational cost of powder coating is low, the initial outlay required to secure the necessary equipment is substantial.

The Future of Powder Coating

Powder coating has come a long way since its first test run, and it remains one of the most dependable pieces of automotive history to this day. However, the introduction of an easy-to-install ceramic coating may just unseat this king of the car world in the future. DIY nano ceramic coating is extremely hydrophobic, making the damage incurred from de-icing agents and general road grime a thing of the past. Additionally, it requires no special training or equipment to apply and will adhere to a laundry list of surfaces.

For the moment, however, you’re still likely to see powder coating as the industry’s go-to, not just in the automotive world, but for laptop cases, microwaves, and a wide variety of other products that have benefited from its invention. There may also be room in the market for a hybrid approach — a sort of 1-2 punch of powder coating and a durable ceramic overlay. But only time will tell how the dust settles on this one.