Epoxy Coatings-What is Epoxy Paint
Epoxy coatings were first developed in the mid-to-late 1950s and are now the most widely used industrial and marine protective coating. They are two-component coatings packaged in separate containers. One container holds the epoxy resin (base), the other a curing agent (converter). Epoxies get their name from the reactive portion of the base, an epoxide.
There are literally hundreds of epoxy resins and curing agents commercially available. These materials are also used in other applications, such as adhesives and structural repair materials. There are also numerous combinations of bases and curing agents.
Epoxy coatings can be solvent-based, water-based, or essentially solvent-free. Epoxy coatings can also be used in powder coating. Epoxy coatings have excellent adhesion, chemical resistance, water resistance, and wet adhesion. They are susceptible to chalking and are normally top coated with a UV-resistant coating when in atmospheric service. Epoxy resins can be blended with other resins or special pigments to modify the resistance characteristics of the basic epoxy coating:
- Blending with an acrylic resin increases UV resistance
- Blending with a phenolic resin increases chemical resistance
- Adding glass flakes increases impact and wear resistance
- Adding aluminum oxide or other irregular shaped material creates a non-skid material
Some epoxy coatings, called epoxy mastics, are frequently sold and used as “surface tolerant coatings.” This simply means that the manufacturer has said their material adheres well to a surface that is not white-metal abrasive cleaned. These materials are formulated with excellent flow-out and penetration. They also may have an aluminum pigment in flake form to aid in reducing moisture penetration.
Major concerns on application of epoxies:
- Ensure that the correct components are used in the correct ratio.
- Ensure that the correct mixing method are used to avoid air entrapment.
- Ensure that the correct film builds are achieved during application.
- Ensure that the time frames for overcoating or in-service exposure are observed.
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