Six Surface Treatments for Aluminium Extrusions

Low-cost and versatile, aluminium extrusions are a great choice for your project. With a high strength to weight ratio and solid green credentials, aluminium will also accept a range of high-performance coatings that can enhance its look and improve corrosion resistance for extreme conditions.

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These are six of the best coatings that will stand up to anything and help you achieve the right look.

1. Pretreatment

If you want to powder coat or paint your aluminium extrusions, you’ll need a pretreatment. First the aluminium is cleaned or etched with acidic or alkaline materials before the pretreatment is applied to improve the adhesion of the finishing product.

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2. Mechanical Finishes

These types of finishes can look good on their own, depending on the application, or prepare the extrusions for other surface treatments such as those supplied by Mechanical finishes include buffing, polishing, blasting and grinding to create a range of different effects.

3. Anodizing

While aluminium has its own natural oxide film, the anodizing process helps to add extra protection against corrosion. During this electrochemical process, a porous and highly durable anodic oxide layer is deposited on the surface of the aluminium. If you intend to use bright colours, this is also an excellent pretreatment, as anodized aluminium accepts vibrant colours very well.

4. Bright Dipping

If you require a high-shine mirror finish for your aluminium extrusions, the bright dipping process is the way to achieve this. The aluminium is dipped in a specially prepared solution of hot nitric and phosphoric acids and can then be anodized to further improve resistance to corrosion by thickening the oxide layer.

5. Liquid Paint

If you require a highly coloured finish, the liquid paint process creates a uniform film thickness that can help you create a particular look. Although the coating may contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), these are driven off during the baking process, leaving an even coating of film along the profile.

6. Powder Coating

This process creates a film that meets strict environmental criteria on VOCs. The product is applied as a solid and then baked, during which process the particles fuse to create a film also suitable for sublimation printing.


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