CLADDING & SHEETING
Finish with finesse
There are many architectural building products and components that can benefit from a powder coated
finish. In this article, John Park-Davies, director of Vertik-Al, advises readers on the best way to handle
powder coated goods when storing and moving them on-site, how to clean the products, and what to look
for when sourcing a coating supplier
Now, I know many of you will
have handled powder coated
products, but do you know
what this actually means?
Powder coating, as the name
suggests, is a type of coating that
is applied as a solid powder rather
than the liquid of more conventional
coatings. The omission of any liquid
solvents and their ability to be infinitely
recycled during the application process
results in an exceptionally eco-friendly
Normally factory applied to metal
substrates (non-heat sensitive) via an
electrostatic application method, the
powder coated film is very tough and
Handle with care
While powder coating provides a
durable and resistant finish, coated
items must be handled with care,
especially when they arrive
on-site. In an age when we’re all
trying to be more waste aware,
some powder coaters and product
manufacturers are working to
reduce packaging and are choosing
instead to tape the profile and put
“The coated products are at their most
vulnerable once they arrive on-site.
Storage and movement around the site
have the potential to cause damage.
During storage, the items should be
protected from the elements”
protection on each corner. The hope is
that this will encourage handling with
care because there is no protection.
Taping of the profile is key
to protecting the coating during
manufacture, transport and installation
of coated parts. The protective tape
must be removed within three months
or the glue residue may start to affect
the coating. Powder manufacturers
recommend using a mild detergent to
clean and remove the tape.
The coated products are at their
most vulnerable once they arrive
on-site. Storage and movement
around the site have the potential
to cause damage. During storage,
the items should be protected
from the elements, away from direct
sunlight and rain, and ideally placed in
sheltered storage. On-site and during
construction, coated products should
be protected from damage caused by
abrasion and materials, such as paint,
mortar and cleaning chemicals.
If these, or any other construction
materials come into contact with the
coated surface, they must be cleaned
immediately. If left to dry, they may
require aggressive cleaning, which in
turn, may damage the coated surface.
If damage does occur, we would
recommend contacting the coating
supplier direct or via the product
manufacturer, to find the best solution.
Alongside coating and powder
suppliers, most manufacturers of coated
products offer cleaning guidance. These
are supported by guidelines produced
by associations, such as QUALICOAT
(UK and Ireland).
QUALICOAT is a product
certification scheme and is the standard
for coated architectural aluminium.
There are currently 16 QUALICOAT
members in the UK and Ireland.
The association advises on the
is director of
32 www.rcimag.co.uk May 2020