People often debate whether liquid or powder coatings are superior. Liquid coatings are highly economical (specifically in large-scale coating applications) and don’t require oven-curing processes. Powder-based products are thicker, often last significantly longer, and feature more customization options than liquid coatings. Some liquid-based products boast low VOC content, but are powder coatings safe for the environment too?
The short answer is yes: power coatings are environmentally friendly. Let’s look at why this is and even briefly explore how liquid coatings compare.
Volatile Organic Compounds
Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are in most types of liquid coatings and paints. VOCs act as solvents and thinners, interacting with resin to create materials that stick to their substrates. Unfortunately, VOCs can also pollute surrounding ecosystems, contaminating the air and negatively impacting the ozone layer. Some low- or non-VOC liquid coatings are suitable for sensitive environments (healthcare facilities, residential buildings, etc.), but most of those options are more expensive and less available. One of the main appeals of powder coatings is that every variation is VOC-free, making them safe and more environmentally sustainable.
Product Manufacturing Considerations
Consider how the manufacturing processes of liquid and powder coatings contribute to environmental problems. Liquid coating requires chemicals and toxins on production lines, generating more hazardous waste. Conversely, powder coating uses significantly fewer toxic substances during production, limiting pollution overall. These differences may seem marginal, but the impact of reducing riskier manufacturing practices goes a long way in protecting the environment.
While some liquid coating products don’t have VOCs, almost all are not recyclable. Powder coating, however, is sustainable. Companies can collect and reuse overspray, helping to maximize consumption. This sustainable practice is extremely beneficial for surrounding environments and ecosystems. As a bonus, it’s also immensely economical and good for businesses overall.
Not only are powder coatings safe for the environment, but they’re a wise investment for any company. Look out for signs that you need powder coating services, and contact a professional powder coating business for expert assistance!