When folks picture an aluminum fence, their minds most likely paint a picture of a classic, black, picket-style fence. Around 85% of all aluminum fences sold fall within this black color option. A black aluminum fence mimics a historic, wrought iron look without having to pay the premium for wrought iron.
But black isn’t the only color option for an aluminum fence – aluminum fences offered by Aluminum Fences Direct offer a long-lasting powder coat option in three different colors: black, white, and bronze. Powder coating your fence is just another way to accessorize your fence to make it look great and stand out from the rest of the fences in your neighborhood.
What is Powder Coating?
Powder coating is a dry painting process that has grown in popularity since its creation in the 1960s. Since then, powder coating accounts for more than 51% of the industrial painting market. It’s known for its durability, resiliency, and environmental benefits. Powder coating doesn’t only serve as a decorative finish but also protects and enhances the life of aluminum fences.
Polymer resin systems are combined with curatives, pigments, leveling agents, flow modifiers, and other additives which bind to the aluminum fence surface when melted. The result of this combination of materials is a powder that has a baking powder-like consistency.
The application process is known as electrostatic deposition – a process that uses a spray gun to electrostatically charge the powder. The aluminum fence is then grounded which attracts the positively charged powder particles. The result is an even application of a powder coat. From there, the fence enters the curing process.
Through the curing process, the coating undergoes another chemical change – the coating chemically reacts to produce long molecular chains. These long molecular chains are what give powder coating its durability.
Is Powder Coating Environmentally Friendly?
The powder coating process has a much lesser environmental impact than its solvent-based paint relative. Solvent-based paints are known for generating airborne pollutants that are harmful to both humans and the environment. These airborne pollutants are known as Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)
Volatile Organic Compounds are toxic – they quickly evaporate off from its liquid form and contribute to the generation of dangerous ground-level ozone. VOCs react with nitrogen oxides in the hot summer air to form ground-level ozone, which is responsible for the irritation of the eyes, and throat, and can aggravate asthma and cause other lung complications. If trapped indoors, VOCs can cause serious health problems for those exposed.
Newer paints are either water-based or low-VOC products but are often not capable of providing the same durable finish that high-VOC products can. Powder coating is generally considered non-toxic and does not contribute to any VOC air pollution. For the applicator, it generates very little waste, none of which is hazardous.
The non-hazardous byproduct can actually be recycled directly at the painting facility. The traditional painting process generates hazardous waste through the retouching and disposal processes. Chemicals used to strip paint and clean off wet painting equipment contain additional solvents that must be properly disposed of. With powder coating, to retouch you can simply wipe the part clean or use compressed air instead of using a hazardous solvent.
That said, powder coating does produce a nuisance dust that can be harmful if not properly filtered. With powder coating, the HEPA filtration process is much less complex and requires only a fraction of the amount of energy to maintain. Powder coating isn’t only beneficial thanks to it being a non-VOC product but is also energy efficient.
Why Should I Powder Coat My Aluminum Fence?
Powder coating an aluminum fence results in a thick, even layer of paint that is aesthetically pleasing, durable, and easy to clean. Powder coating is easily cleaned with just mild soap and water. With just minimal care, it will last for years. In addition to being an environmentally friendly product, it is incredibly durable.
The powder coating process also produces a more textured finish. A textured finish on an aluminum fence results in a finish that is similar to that of a wrought iron fence. It protects the metal surface from corrosion and other environmental degradations. It’s more scratch resistant, chip resistance, and generally lasts longer thanks to the thickness of the application. Powder coating is much more common on outdoor products that require durabilities such as aluminum fences, bike racks, and bollards.
To learn more about the benefits of powder coating an aluminum fence, check out this other article written by Aluminum Fences Direct.
What Color Should I Powder Coat My Aluminum Fence?
Aluminum Fences Direct offers three colors of powder coating: black, white, and bronze. Which color you choose is often up to you and your taste. A black coating gives your fence a traditional, wrought iron appearance. A white aluminum fence is a great option to brighten up your yard. If your house is painted white or has white trimming, then a white powder coating is a great option for you.
The bronze option is more historic in its looks. A bronze accent is more ornamental and more clearly defines the property line. Bronze is ideal for elegant entrances such as country clubs and commercial businesses.
How Much Does Powder Coating Cost?
Powder coating is slightly more expensive than its wet paint counterpart. This additional cost is well worth the advantages that it has to offer in durability and ease of maintenance. On average, powder coating costs about $2,000 versus an average cost of wet paint of $1,900.
Aluminum Fences Direct does not upcharge for a black aluminum fence – in fact, it is already included in all black fence varieties. The white variety costs the same amount as black, but is takes a week or two longer to produce. The bronze variety is similarly offered at the same price, but it too takes a week or two longer to produce.
Powder coat paints have many advantages over their wet paint counterparts. For outdoor metal products like aluminum fences that require durability and resiliency, powder coating is the better option. The powder coating process generates an even, textured appearance that is aesthetically pleasing and long-lasting. It’s easy to clean, easy to maintain, and much better for the environment.