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Powder coating is a common way of painting and protecting aluminium extrusions on windows and doors. Powder coated window frames are used in both residential and commercial properties – in fact, these days, pretty much every modern aluminium window you see is powder coated.
Powder coating’s numerous benefits explain its popularity: not only is it available in a vast number of colours and textures, but it’s also long-lasting and largely weather resistant. Of course, powder coating is not invincible. Without the right care, powder coated window frames can become dull, damaged and unsightly.
So, how do you know when it’s time to arrange for some aluminium window frame repairs and what does this restoration work involve? Simply keep scrolling to find out! In this blog, Spectrum’s experts dish all the details on powder coated aluminium, including the 4 signs that indicate they need repairing.
What Are Powder Coated Window Frames?
In contrast to a wet paint or spray, powder coating (as its name suggests) uses a dry powder made from polyester to colour and protect the material it is applied to. As well as being durable and low maintenance in comparison to something like timber, it’s also more environmentally friendly than solvent-containing wet paint, which releases toxic fumes into the atmosphere.
The powder coating process itself involves three main steps. Firstly, the aluminium bars are thoroughly cleaned and degreased. Next, an electrostatic charge is passed through the aluminium to make it conductive, which works to attract the ionized powdered (and coloured) plastic material when it is sprayed. And finally, to cure the coating, the aluminium is passed slowly through a specialist oven. This fuses the powdered particles together giving the surface of the metal an even coating.
Signs Your Powder Coated Window Frames Need Repairing
Powder coated window frames require careful cleaning to keep them looking their best and lasting their full 20-year lifespan.
However, even with a strict maintenance regime in place, powder coated aluminium can become damaged for a number of reasons, including faulty application or environmental factors such as UV exposure or pollution. Because of this, if you own powder coated windows, there may come a point where you need to invest in specialists who can carry out window frame restorations.
Here are 4 signs of damage or oxidisation you should look out for:
1) Your powder coating appears dull or faded in appearance
2) You notice bubbling underneath the powder coated surface
3) The coating looks visibly damaged (e.g. with scratches)
4) Your powder coated window frames feel chalky to touch
Although aluminium is pretty resistant to corrosion, especially when encased in powder coating, it can still suffer from atmospheric oxidisation if that coating fails. While oxidisation is non-destructive, it’s unsightly and can negatively impact the curb appeal of your building.
It’s also important to note that any damage to the powder coating reduces its overall effectiveness, which may result in more comprehensive window frame restorations in the future.
How to Restore Powder Coated Window Frames
When the need for this type of window frame refurbishment arises, the vital first step is to inspect all powder coated surfaces, looking for any signs of blistering or flaking. Why is this so important? Any signs of this kind indicate that the anodized aluminum, below the powder coat, has oxidized. As a result, a debonding of the coating from the metal surface has occurred.
The treatment for areas suffering from a dull appearance or superficial scratches is relatively straightforward. It involves the application of a non-abrasive industrial anti-microbial, which is rubbed onto the surface by hand. This product removes the top micron layer revealing the original colour of the powder coat underneath.
When it comes to deep scratches, or blistered and flakey areas, however, more serious interventions are required. The area is first abraded with specialist tools, before being feathered back to prepare for a recommended primer which is applied and left to cure. After this, a 2-part epoxy paint is used to recoat the area. To protect the frame from future UV degradation and water, the final step includes applying a hydrophobic coating.
Provided the new coating is carefully colour matched with the existing coating, post-repairs your windows should look as good as new!
Spectrum’s Specialist Metal Works Service:
When it comes to finding experts to manage your aluminum window frame repairs, Spectrum have got your covered.
Our fully inclusive exterior metal refurbishment service includes everything from repairing and restoring powder coated aluminum window frames, to removing rust from iron and steel.
As a team, we’re unrivalled in our combination of experience, cutting-edge industrial equipment, and the various access methods at our disposal. Our expertise in this area means we can transform and refurbish any type of metallic element on the exterior of your property.
Get In Touch
Worried about the state of your powder coated window frames ? Then why not get in touch with the team at Spectrum. No matter the size or scope of the problem, we’re certain we’ve got an aluminium window frame repairs services to match.
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