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What should you know about industrial painting?

Last modified: 2021-08-02 | Approximate reading time 4 mins

Amanda Harvey

Among the renovation projects most accessible to apprentice renovators, there is always painting work. Indeed, painting is part of our daily lives and few will never have to grab a brushstroke to change the appearance of one or more rooms inside their home.

However, we rarely discuss the difference between industrial paint and the one we use for residential projects. Here’s everything you need to know about industrial painting and its specifics.

Industrial painting: everything you need to know

From the outset, you may be wondering about the relevance of using paint specifically designed for industrial spaces. Why exactly would we avoid the use of standard paint? Keep in mind that industrial spaces are generally exposed to very specific conditions including cooling or heating, frequent use and exposure to chemicals, which tends to accelerate surface wear.

To maintain favourable conditions for the preservation of paint and its durability, it’s necessary to resort to using industrial paint and painting methods. Indeed, this type of paint must provide effective protection against physical attacks, both chemical and environmental, while also playing its role of making rooms aesthetically beautiful.

Industrial paint: what is it exactly?

Although it often comes in liquid form, industrial paint may also come in powder or paste form. When applied according to the procedure indicated by the manufacturer, the paint will adhere adequately to the surface and become a solid filter that protects it.

Of course, the specific type of paint purchased will depend on its intended use. Thus, it’s essential to take into account the surface on which the paint will be applied: gypsum, aluminum or wrought iron structures, machinery, concrete blocks, floors, and so on.

Industrial paint: what it contains

Thinners

As the name suggests, thinners help to give the paint an appropriate consistency, which is favourable for its application. Otherwise, the paint would be much too thick to spread over a surface. Also, thinners serve the purpose of stabilizing paint inside the container. It’s important to emphasize the presence of several types of diluents: ketones, chlorides, aromatic/aliphatic hydrocarbons and alcohols.

Pigments

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As with residential paint, the pigments found in industrial paint obviously give it its colour, but also its opacity. It should be noted that there are several types of pigments:

  • Inert pigments: Usually, this type of pigment is used for undercoats and coatings. These have a low refractive index and thus have a moderate impact on the colour of the paint itself. They’re used for obtaining satin or matte finishes.
  • Special pigments: These refer to a set of different pigments whose unique nature doesn’t allow them to be included in the other categories in this list (toxic, pearlescent, intumescent and metallic pigments).
  • Covering pigments: Once again, this type of pigment has a name that evokes its properties! It’s used to opaquely cover the surfaces to which it’s applied.
  • Anti-corrosion pigments: As their name suggests, anti-corrosion pigments prevent corrosion from forming. This is why they’re used for the layers of paint in direct contact with steel, as well as for plaster.

Additives

As far as additives are concerned, their aim is to achieve specific objectives that fulfill particular needs incurred by various types of projects. Among these, there’s the need for colour nuance, to generally improve the quality of the paint or to accelerate the hardening of the surface to which it’s applied.

Binders

For their part, binders give the paint its ability to protect the surface by forming a film where the paint is applied after it’s dried. Binders include various categories such as polyester resins as well as those based on polyurethane, acrylic and epoxy.

Industrial painting project: the steps to follow

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When it comes to carrying out this project, we’ll first apply one or more coats of paint, referred to as primer coats. So what’s the role of a primer? As this is the first coat of paint that comes into contact with metal surfaces (cast iron, stainless steel, galvanized, etc.), it aims to protect the surface from oxidation thanks to its anti-corrosion pigments.

Having little binder and a certain amount of resin, the undercoat or primer smooths the surface, which sets the stage for the application of subsequent coats. As with a home painting project, it’ll be essential to fill any holes or imperfections in the surface before proceeding with painting. Also, before moving on to the next step, it’s necessary to wait until the first coat is completely dry.

Then, you’ll need to apply an intermediate coat (if necessary). Due to its thickness, this coat eliminates the need to apply more than one topcoat. Note that this has fewer pigments and binders than the undercoat.

Once this step is complete and the drying time respected, you can apply a topcoat. This will be carried out directly on the intermediate layer or on the primer (in the case where the application of an intermediate layer was not required). Finally, this project ends with a varnish, the finish of choices can vary between very glossy, glossy or even mat.

As you likely already know, an industrial painting project can take on many forms. As the paint is applied to different surfaces (concrete, wood, metal, gypsum, etc), it’s necessary to carefully select the correct coating to make this project a reality. Either way, the paint needs to be as durable as it is tough.

Would you like to have an estimate of the cost of your industrial painting project? Try our price calculator!

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