Metal surfaces are tougher to paint, especially those that must withstand outdoor elements.
Rollers and brushes can leave visible streaks, and latex and oil-based paints can bubble or peel on intricate surfaces. For a smooth, durable painted finish on almost any metal surface, electrostatic painting is the best option, offering superior results.
What Is Electrostatic Painting?
If you understand how a magnet sticks to the side of a refrigerator, you know that positive and negative molecules attract. The metal in the refrigerator has negative molecules and the magnet is positively charged, creating a pull between the two surfaces as the molecules reach to connect with each other. The same concept is used for electrostatic painting.
With electrostatic painting, the paint molecules are positively charged as they leave the spray nozzle in an electric field that directs them toward the negative charge of the metal surface. The attraction between positive and negative molecules is 75 times stronger than gravity; the pull is so strong that even paint sprayed slightly over or away from the metal surface will try to change direction to land on the metal. The paint molecules are attracted to the highest charge; droplets sprayed will automatically go to the area without paint to create an even surface.
Electrostatic painting differs from standard spray painting due to the magnetic attraction between the paint and the metal surface. Paint from conventional sprayers goes where the gun is pointed, but there is more overspray and it is difficult to create an even coating. Electrostatic painting creates an environment where the paint is sprayed, then self-propelled toward the metal with the magnetic attraction, reducing the overspray and uneven coating during the process.
Benefits of Electrostatic Painting
Once you understand how electrostatic painting works, it is obvious that it is easier to paint metal with this method. However, it is more than just ease that makes this process more desirable. There are many other benefits to using electrostatic painting for a variety of metal surfaces.
- Powder-like coating. Powder coatings are popular for metal surfaces for protection and durability, but they usually must be applied in a factory setting. Electrostatic painting creates an equally smooth and protective coating, but the process is portable and can be done on-site to refurbish existing metal objects.
- Reduced paint loss and overspray. Electrostatic painting can have up to 98% transfer rate, reducing overspray and waste of paint. Typical paint sprayers only have about 40% efficiency, with more overspray and some paint drying in the air before it ever hits the surface.
- Added value. Electrostatic painting is not necessarily cheaper than other types of painting, but it does add more value. Due to the efficiency, quality and even coating, most items only need one coat of paint. Plus, there is the value of extending the life of metal items with a quick coat of paint; they look new again and are protected for years from rust and deterioration.
- Quick and convenient. Many electrostatic painting projects can be done at your home or business for the convenience. Plus, the drying time is minimal. Most electrostatic paint jobs are dry within hours.
- Durable, versatile surface. Electrostatic painting creates a non-porous surface that is easy to clean and hygienic. It resists stains and spills and most cleaners can safely be used without damage to the surface.
- Sleek surface. The electrostatic paint not only attracts the metal; it also does not clump or drip like conventional paint. This is because the paint molecules are all positively charged and repel from one another, creating a fine mist that is better for metal surfaces and coats it evenly for a sleek surface.
- Old items look new again. Whether it is an old claw foot bathtub in your home or metal commercial equipment at your business, you can restore usable items that just need a surface makeover.
- Color options. Electrostatic paints come in many color options to meet your needs, including customized paint colors to match existing surfaces.
When it comes to painting metal like wrought iron fencing, outdoor equipment, old refrigerators, antique bathtubs, and office equipment, electrostatic painting offers many advantages. However, it does require the right expertise, equipment and paint to create the new surfaces you desire. Our crews at The Painting Company are electrostatic painting experts with the right training and equipment to restore your metal surfaces with the highest quality paint.
If you have metal surfaces that need a new color or look, or are beginning to rust or deteriorate, give our team a call at The Painting Company. We can perform most electrostatic painting projects on-site and restore the look and durability of your metal surfaces. Contact us to learn more about our metal painting services—we also offer interior and exterior painting for homes and businesses in Arizona, Colorado, and Nevada.