Instead of going to your local hardware store for a can or two of spray paint, consider covering your aluminum or plastic in different more durable materials. While the materials may be a bit more expensive at first, it will prove to be money well spent in the long run as these coats will last a long time.
Aluminum & Plastic Coating Aletrnatives
- Anodizing This first process applies only to Aluminum and is an electrochemical coating that forms a coating of aluminum oxide on the surface of the aluminum. Here are some general pros and cons
- Can only be used with Aluminum
- This is cheaper than most painting options
- This coating cannot peel because its integral to the metal
- The thicker the coating the longer the life of the coating
- Poor chemical resistance but still better than pure aluminum (ie acidic rain)
- You can paint or cover the anodizing with another form of paint or coating
- Environmentally friendly as it emits no VOC’s and uses no heavy metals
- A few colors available
- Easy to scratch
- Able to be done at home with the right chemicals and materials
- No curing time needed
- You can’t remove the coating
- Powder Coating This process involves spraying powder onto the plastic or metal part and then melting and baking that powder onto the material coated. Here are some general pros and cons to powder coating
- Multiple colors available
- Most resistant to chemical and physical abuse
- It can chip and peel, although not easily
- More expensive than spray paint and anodizing
- The coating is thick
- Environmentally friendly
- Can be used with multiple materials
- Hard to do it yourself
- Short curing times
- More flexible coating meaning its more durable with moving parts
- Easy to clean off the powder and restart before you cure it
- Paint Finally, the tried and true spray can. This involves spraying paint onto the metal or plastic and then waiting for the paint to dry or curing the paint in an oven. Here are some pros and cons
- Easiest to do at home
- Cheap for simple paint jobs although it can get really expensive with more complex jobs
- NOT environmentally friendly as paint sometimes includes heavy metals and the propellants are usually hydrocarbons and curing releases VOC’s
- Long curing times
- Infinite colors available
- This has the weakest chemical and physical resistance
- Only thin coatings allowed otherwise paint will droop
- Coatings can easily peel and chip
- Easy to clean off and fix any mistakes
Anodizing is cheap and durable but can only be used on aluminum with limited colors and no re-do’s. Powder coating is expensive but offers the best durability with the most flexibility in terms of what it can be applied on and what colors can be used. Finally, painting is easiest to do, but has the weakest durability. Whichever coating you go for, you’ll have an amazing look to admire and protect your materials for years.
I’m sure it’s pretty safe to say that when coating things many people use paint as their first choice of coating material. Why? Paint is generally the easiest to use and the most familiar to people, especially those that are doing a project themselves. Our site mainly focuses on alternative coatings especially for materials such as wood, aluminum, plastic etc. After all paint doesn’t adhere to these types of materials very well and will probably leave you frustrated and defeated should you try. In our first post we thought instead of diving right in to different coatings for such materials we would first share and discuss the coating alternatives to use in place of paint even on those surfaces that paint will easily adhere to. Why you ask again? We thought it would give our readers an idea on what some alternatives to paint might be, especially because painting and the removal of paint isn’t always the fastest or easiest job out there. Check out some of these following paint alternatives and see what you think.
- Wall Decals- basically a giant sticker but meant for your walls they are relatively inexpensive and easy to both put on and remove. They can had design and color to a boring wall and are a lot faster to put on then priming and painting a wall.
- Tile Transfers- Looking to spice up your existing tile without having to remove the old and install new tile? Not only is that a process in itself but it can become expensive and result in a lot of work. Instead look for tile transfers which are basically like stickers or wall decals for your tile. They are easy to put on but can require a little scrubbing and work to remove the longer you leave them on.
- Different Shelving- While shelving is not a coating it can act as an eye catcher so that you wont need to worry about any kind of coating. From shadow box shelving to different size shapes and colors adding shelving to your wall can spice up your space and had decoration. Just be prepared to cover the holes in the wall down the road should you choose to remove them.
- Temporary Wallpaper- Somewhat similar to a larger format wall decal temporary wallpaper is basically a big sheet or removable wallpaper that can be adhered and removed from your wall on your own. While there are some that are better quality than others they are generally durable and easy to install. After time the wallpaper can begin to peel so make sure that when you do put it in place you are doing as thorough job as possible.
- Tapestries- Tapestries or large pieces of fabric can be used in place of paint. While they may be easier than painting a priming a wall they can get a bit expensive depending on the tapestry or fabric. Also you will need to decide how you want to hang it on the wall, screws, velcro strips or even starching it. Starching can be somewhat of a pain and a bit messy so make sure you are sure in your hanging tactic before beginning the process.
While these are definitely different alternatives to coating and painting materials it is always good to explore your options completely before starting out on any project. Different materials such as plastic and aluminum can be tricky and somewhat of a headache to coat but it doesn’t mean it’s in possible!
Hello and welcome all to our site regarding different coatings that can be used in place of paint on different types of materials. Many times you will come across plastic, aluminum, metal or other materials that you would like to enhance or put a type of coating on to protect it or simply make it look better. While paint can go a long way on many things sometimes it is not the best substance to use nor is it compatible with the type of material you are trying to coat. We hope to shed some light and insight on different types of coatings out there that can lend a hand in updating, enhancing or coating all different kinds of materials. Please stay tuned for our first post and we hope that all that visit us enjoy our posts!