Galvanized vs. Galvalume vs Galvanneal: What’s the Difference?
Galvanized, Galvalume and Galvanneal are three of the more popular coatings used to protect steel from corrosion. Each of these coatings has unique properties and advantages, making them suitable for different applications and we will provide more clarity on why you may choose one over the other!
What is Galvanized Steel?
Galvanized coating is made by dipping steel into molten zinc, which forms a protective layer over the surface of the steel. Zinc is an excellent sacrificial material, which means that it will corrode before the steel does. This means that even if the zinc layer is damaged, the steel beneath it will remain protected. Galvanized coating is affordable and easy to apply, making it a popular choice for various applications.
Advantages of Galvanized Steel
- Zinc layer acts as a sacrificial layer, protecting the underlying steel from corrosion.
- Can be cut, bent, and formed into various shapes without compromising its strength.
- It does not need to be painted or coated, which reduces the overall cost of maintenance.
Disadvantages of Galvanized Steel
- The zinc layer can wear off over time, especially in harsh environments.
- Galvanized coating does not offer the same level of corrosion resistance as Galvalume.
Common Galvanized Applications
- Roofing and Siding
- Fencing and Guardrails
- Electrical Conduit and Wiring
- Nuts, Bolts, and Other Tools
- Automotive Parts and Frames
What is Galvalume Steel?
Galvalume is a coating made of a combination of aluminum, zinc, and silicon. The aluminum provides a barrier against corrosion, while the zinc provides sacrificial protection. Silicon is added to improve the adhesion of the coating to the steel. Galvalume is a popular choice for roofing and siding applications, where it provides excellent corrosion resistance.
Advantages of Galvalume Steel
- Galvalume provides excellent corrosion resistance, making it suitable for harsh environments.
- The combination of aluminum and zinc provides both barrier and sacrificial protection, ensuring long-lasting protection.
- The silicon improves the adhesion of the coating to the steel, providing better paint adhesion.
- Galvalume is widely considered more aesthetically pleasing than galvanized materials
Disadvantages of Galvalume Steel
- Galvalume coating is more expensive than galvanized coating.
- Galvalume does not hold up as well as galvanized in alkaline environments.
- If end use has potential for scratches, then galvanized steel may be better suited.
Common Galvalume Applications
- Roofing and siding
- Agricultural buildings, such as barns and sheds
- Automotive parts, such as mufflers and exhaust pipes
- Gutters and downspouts
- HVAC ducts and equipment
What is Galvanneal Steel?
Galvanneal is a coating made of a zinc-iron alloy. The steel is dipped into a molten zinc-iron alloy, which forms a tightly bonded coating on the surface of the steel. Galvanneal is often used in applications where the steel will be painted, as it provides excellent paint adhesion.
Advantages of Galvanneal Steel
- Galvanneal provides superior paint adhesion, making it an excellent choice for applications where the steel will be painted.
- Galvanneal steel is more rust and corrosion-resistant than Galvanized Steel
- The coating is tightly bonded to the surface of the steel, providing long-lasting protection.
- Improved weldability compared to Galvanized Steel.
Disadvantages of Galvanneal Steel
- Galvanneal is more expensive than galvanized coating.
- The coating is not as effective as Galvanneal in harsh environments.
- Galvanneal Steel has a dull gray matte appearance.
Common Galvanneal Applications
- Automotive Parts (Door Panels and Hoods)
- Appliances, such as refrigerators and washing machines.
- Electrical enclosures and cabinets
- Shelving and storage racks
- Agricultural equipment, such as grain bins and silos
Coatings for Corrosion Comparison Table
Galvanized Steel Shiny Rough Spangle
Galvanneal Steel Dull Gray Matte
Galvalume Smooth Matte Spangle
Galvanized Steel Less Weldable
Galvanneal Steel Ideal for Spot Welding
Galvalume Less Weldable
Galvanized Steel High (Not Necessary)
Galvalume High (Not Necessary)
In conclusion, each of these products has unique properties and advantages, making them suitable for different applications. Galvanized coating is affordable and easy to apply, making it a popular choice for outdoor or electrical applications. Galvalume provides excellent corrosion resistance, making it suitable for harsh environments. Galvanneal provides superior paint adhesion, making it an excellent choice for applications where the steel will be painted. Understanding the differences between these products can help you choose the right product for your specific needs.
About Online Metals
Online Metals is the world’s leading eCommerce metal supplier, specializing in small quantity cut-to-size metals and plastics, delivered in a fast and reliable manner.
Since 1998, Online Metals has expanded our catalog to over 85,000 different cut sizes, grown our national footprint to six pickup locations across the U.S., and continued to improve upon our best-in-class customer experience.
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