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Powder Coating Booth Temperature: A Factor in Powder Coating Transfer Efficiency

March 19, 2019

When someone talks about the heat, all eyes flick towards the curing oven. Ultimately, that's where the powder fluidizes and hardens, so this kind of reaction is natural enough. Only, the temperature is rising in the powder coating booth, too. Okay, this heat might not impact the process, but it's there. It can't be ignored, not when it could have an adverse effect on output quality.

Managing Powder Coating Booth Temperature

Before rifling off a solution, why is the temperature changing in the booth? Is there a heater inside the booth? A fire safety officer would choke at the very idea. Remember, the dry powder doesn't emit any hazardous chemicals. It's an environmentally safe product. However, the powder does mix with compressed air, so there's a lot of oxygen flowing inside the sealed cubicle. Bottom lining it, the mix of dry powders and compressed air does represent a potential fire risk. The electrostatic ground is continuity-checked regularly because of this combustion potential. Still, dry powders are dense powders. Not the individual grains, of course, for they're very nearly weightless. Like a swarm of tiny insects, the gun-driven powder powers its way into the booth. True, the cloud is impacted by humidity, but this problem is eliminated by air compressors drier and filters. Even so, with the air dry, it's now warmer. Even the temperature of the component, which has perhaps passed through a drier oven, contributes to the hotter environment inside a powder coating booth. Operator body heat, plus parts heat and/or compressed air warmth, equals more excess energy. Things are getting too hot for comfort.

Counteracting Temperature Effects

With both atmospheric factors swinging wildly, the heat and humidity curves seesaw. Transfer efficiency is next to feel the impact of the thermal swings. Even though humidity clumping and the surface blemish issues that accompany this problem are now solved, the amount of transferred powder has risen by 10% or more. The finish is relatively smooth and bump-free, but now it's been applied too thickly. Alternatively, because the temperature curve is moving in the opposite direction, there's not enough powder covering the surface of a workpiece. Okay, so a second sweep will correct the problem, but that means spending more time on a project that should've been finished on the first pass.

Humidity issues tend to draw a lot of attention, and rightly so, for they're generally the primary culprit. Wet air causes clumping and ugly finishes. Still, perhaps even as a result of a humidity correction procedure, which is a fine irony indeed, too much heat can enter the air. As the thermal load fluctuates, coverage problems and transfer efficiency issues escalate. High or low, that temperature mustn't swing wildly out of control.

GP Industries Pty Ltd

Head Office

1 Regal Court,
Vermont South VIC 3133

Phone: (03) 9802 1355

Fax: (03) 9802 6027

Email: gp_ind@bigpond.com

Factory

Factory G,
20 Burgess Road,
Bayswater North VIC 3153

Phone: (03) 9761 7676

Fax: (03) 9761 7671

Email: gpfactory@bigpond.com

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