How to Clean Metal For Powder Coating
Powder Coating is often overlooked when it comes to cleaning or preparing the surface before coating. Much like automotive paint you need to clean the parts very well before coating or you may have adhesion issues, finish defects, or premature failure of the coating. We decided to give a crash course in our top ways to prepare a part for powder coating.
- Mechanical Abrasion- Don’t have a media blaster, don’t have a parts washer? Mechanical abrasion is the simplest way to prepare metal for powder coating. You can use a wire brush, wire metal wheel, sandpaper, or even a grinder to freshen up the metal for coating. Be careful when using a grinder or sander as to not mar the surface too much that it will show through the powder. We suggest using a wire wheel to remove old paint and grease quickly and following up with a wire brush by hand. You can then use paint prep to clean the residue off before coating.
- Chemical Cleaning- If the item is free of old coatings and you just want to apply a fresh coat of powder you still need to use a chemical cleaner to get any residue off the surface. Old grease, oils from your hands, or dirt/debris from stripping could be present. We prefer to use PRE Paint Prep for the best pre-coating wipe down. If you’ve blasted the parts you can first use Eastwood After Blast to clean and etch the parts for the ultimate powder adhesion.
- Media Blasting- By far the best way to clean a part for powder coating is to use a media blaster to clean the surface. Media blasting ticks off a number of boxes when powder coating. First it completely removes any dirt, old coatings, and corrosion off of the surface and leaves you with perfectly clean virgin metal; which is best for coating. The second is that it gives the metal a slight texture to give the powder some “tooth” to bite into when cured onto the surface. 100% of the time a media blasted part will give you a longer lasting powder coated finish with less chance of chipping. We have an entire line of media blasters that range from small job kits for small air compressors to large pressure blasters for professional level blasting.
If you want to start out on your powder coating journey we can outfit your shop or offer you powders to make your next powder project really pop. Find all of our Powder Coating Products HERE.