Is It Done Yet – Ceramic Coating vs Powder Coating

The metal production process is incomplete without coating and finishing. The coating serves various important purposes in metals, including improving their functionality and increasing their durability. However, some coating materials perform better than others, and it is important to pick one that satisfies all of your needs and preferences. 

Powder and ceramic are the most popular metal coating materials. Here is an overview of ceramic coating vs powder coating, their pros, cons, and recommended applications. 

As part of the Elemet Group, we at Glenn Metalcraft specialize in extreme heavy metal spinning and other services, including cutting and welding. We partner with the other companies in our group to provide a complete range of metal fabrication services, including powder and e-coating through Minnesota Industrial Coatings. Request an estimate and put our excellent customer service and industry knowledge to work on your next project.

ceramic coated flexographic printing roller

Ceramic Coating 

A ceramic coating uses a clear liquid polymer. Its clear appearance characterizes it – essentially, you can see the metal through the clear coating. Ceramic coating is also characterized by its glossy, shiny appearance, excellent for aesthetic appeal. 

The ceramic coating process utilizes two methods: 

Spray Application 

Large metal parts typically call for the use of the spray application. It entails spraying liquid ceramic onto the metal’s surface. The process involves exposure to temperatures as high as 750 degrees Fahrenheit, and the parts are required to have high heat resistance. 

Dip-Spin Application 

Smaller metal parts are more suited to the dip-spin method. It entails immersing the entire metal part into ceramic liquid, effectively coating its whole surface. The process uses a specially designed bin perforated on the sides and bottom. It also involves exposure to high temperatures. 

Pros 

Some of the most notable benefits of ceramic coating include: 

  • Resistance – Ceramic coating exhibits high resistance against heat and scratching. 
  • Aesthetic Appeal – You can see the metal’s original paint through the clear coating, and its glossy appearance adds a shiny and smooth finish to its overall aesthetic appeal. 
  • Easy Maintenance – Parts coated in ceramic are easier and quicker to repair than parts coated in powder. 
  • Affordable – Ceramic coating is also slightly cheaper than powder coating. 

The most notable benefit of ceramic coating is its high resistance against heat, scratching, corrosion, chipping, and other destructive elements. Ceramic coating can withstand temperatures as high as 3,800 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Cons 

One notable disadvantage of ceramic coating is its limited durability compared to powder coating. Ceramic coating can last for up to five years with the proper care and maintenance. In contrast, powder coating can last for up to 20 years.

When to Use Ceramic Coating 

Ceramic coating is recommended for use under varying circumstances. Most notably, it is an ideal option if you are on a restricted budget and your part has a short lifespan, as it is cheaper than powder coating. 

Ceramic coating is also recommended if the metal being coated will be frequently exposed to harsh elements such as heat and corrosion, thanks to the ceramic’s high resistance against such elements. Ultimately, your choice of whether to use ceramic coating will depend on your needs and preferences. 

powder coating line conveyer with parts hanging

Powder Coating 

Powder coating uses polymer resins and various pigments. The materials are heated, melted, cooled, and then crushed into the final coating powder. Electrically charging the powder makes it ready to stick to the metal’s surface. The powder is then sprayed onto the metal using compressed air and cured. 

Powder coatings are cured under temperatures between 350 and 425 degrees Fahrenheit. It is also worth noting that the surface preparation process entails cleaning the metal using chemicals to make it compatible with the electrostatic painting

Pros 

Some of the most notable benefits of powder coating include: 

  • Durability Powder coating can last for up to 20 years with the proper care and maintenance. 
  • Resistance – Powder coating is also resistant to destructive elements such as heat, water, humidity, UV rays, and chemicals. 
  • Aesthetical Appeal – Powder coating also comes in many textures, colors, and styles, making for a vibrant, luxurious aesthetic appeal. 

The most notable benefit of powder coating is its durability. The coating is resistant to heat, chemicals, and physical impacts, and it can maintain its glossy appearance for up to 20 years. The coating also helps protect the metal from these and other destructive elements, increasing their durability exponentially. 

Cons 

Powder coating can be slightly more expensive than ceramic coating, and it may pose more challenges during repairs. However, its high durability offsets the extra cost. 

When to Use Powder Coating 

Powder coating is an excellent option and is especially recommendable for its durability, as it can last for up to 15 years longer than ceramic coating. It is also perfect for aesthetic appeal as it comes in many colors and textures – you can also paint over the coating. It is also worth noting that powder coating is popular for use with used metals. 

a pile of blue powder coated metal ring components

Ceramic Coating vs Powder Coating Done Right 

Now that you understand the differences between ceramic and powder coating, you are ready to start your next project. Glenn Metalcraft Inc. provides the best manufacturing solutions from the first cut through finishing and the final coating via Minnesota Industrial Coatings. Get in touch today to learn more about our services.

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