Three Anti-Corrosion Coatings for Commercial Steel Structures

23 May 2016
 Categories: Industrial & Manufacturing, Blog

Steel is a popular material in the construction of commercial and industrial buildings. This can be attributed to advantageous aspects such as high strength, durability, fire resistance and considerably affordable price of purchase. Basically, this metal alloy can handle the structural and environmental stress attached to commercial buildings. Unfortunately, steel has one major weakness as a building material: its susceptibility to rusting and chemical corrosion. Therefore, it is important to ensure that the surfaces of your steel structures are coated to prevent this form of degradation. Here are the main anti-corrosion coatings to consider for your commercial building.

Paint Coating

Industrial-grade paint is an ideal coating product for protecting steel against corrosion and enhancing aesthetics. The common painting systems for modern building usually consist of a primer, one or more undercoats and the finishing layer for visual appeal. The level of protection on your building will depend on the combined performance of these coatings. The primer is primarily designed to promote adhesion of the main surfaces, but it is advisable to choose a primer with corrosion inhibiting compounds. The undercoat is the main layer, so you should choose resilient paints. Epoxy coatings are popular because they can resist mechanical and chemical damage. However, there are other advantageous options which include polyurethane, fluoro-polymer and phenolic paints. The top finishing layer can be glossy, matted or a subdued semi-gloss, depending on your preference.

Hot-Dip Galvanisation Coating

This type of anti-corrosion is essential for high humidity environments as well as industrial spaces that deal with corrosive materials. Basically, galvanisation involves coating the steel building features using zinc. This layer is not vulnerable to rust or corrosion, so it will provide long-lasting protection. Hot-dip coatings are produced by dipping an entire steel product in molten zinc. Therefore, this option is only viable if you are still in the process of construction. You can request for this treatment to be performed by the steel fabricator. The advantages of choosing this form of galvanisation include abrasion resistance, general toughness and sacrificial zinc protection if the inner steel is exposed.

Thermal Spray Coating

If hot-dip galvanisation is not an option for you because your structure is already established, consider selecting thermal spray coating. This type of anti-corrosion layer is manufactured using metallic elements which can protect steel in aggressive environments such as industrial buildings that deal in high salinity and acidic materials. As implied, this metal is applied using spraying equipment for uniformity. The common metals incorporated into the protective coatings are zinc, aluminium and an alloy of both.