What is galvanised steel?
Galvanized steel is the steel that has been immersed into molten zinc to obtain a coating that is metallurgically bonded and will offer long term corrosion protection.
What is galvanised steel used for?
With a history that stretches back over 150 years, there are innumerable examples of galvanised steel in use in many environments, which prove its performance.
Galvanized steel is all around us, in a whole variety of industries including road, rail, energy plants, oil and gas, agriculture, water and waste and sports and leisure. It can play an important role for buildings, bridges, facades, signal gantries, storage containers, gates, balconies, or even sculptures. Wherever there is a risk for corrosion of steel, galvanising should be used.
What are the advantages of galvanized steel?
Galvanised steel offers many advantages and benefits: it’s proven, honest, sustainable and more.
Find out below why it is crucial to galvanise steel.
1. It’s proven
There are innumerable examples proving the performance of galvanized steel in many environments, industries and applications.
In Dorset, a bridge at Lydlinch was constructed in 1944 to assist the flow of supplies during the D-Day landings.
The Callender-Hamilton design was originally intended only to be a temporary bridge but is still in use 70 years after construction.
An inspection of the bridge was conducted by Galvanizers Association in 1999 after 55 years service. This indicated that the galvanized steel was in excellent condition with no signs of rust on any members.
It is anticipated that the coating will achieve a maintenance-free life of more than 100 years. Read more about how long galvanizing lasts.
2. It’s honest
Due to the unique alloy growth that occurs when clean steel is immersed into molten zinc – the coating effectively becomes part of the steel – if it looks good on day one it will remain so for many many years to come.
3. It’s sustainable
The long-term durability provided by galvanizing is achieved at relatively low environmental burden in terms of energy and other globally relevant impacts.
Several studies have demonstrated the high economic and environmental costs associated with the repeated maintenance painting of steel structures. These burdens can be significantly reduced by an initial investment in long-term protection. Lack of attention to optimal corrosion protection can leave a damaging economic legacy of repeated maintenance costs.
In social housing projects, future maintenance costs will be borne by the local authorities. In public infrastructure projects, use of galvanized steel leads to lower maintenance budgets, releasing public funds for other purposes.
4. It’s tough
The unique nature of the galvanizing process – formation of a series of zinc-iron alloy layers – provides a tough and abrasion resistant coating.
This means less site damage and speedy erection of structures.
5. It’s fast
The actual process of dipping steel in molten zinc takes just a matter of minutes. What takes a bit longer is the preparation of the steelwork and in practice there is a lot of other work being processed at the same time. So the typical turnaround time is about three days. By arrangement, however, galvanizers can offer a 24 hour turnaround. Find your local galvanizer.
6. It’s self healing
Zinc corrodes in preference to steel and sacrifices itself to protect the steel, hence hot dip galvanizing will provide this sacrificial protection. The corrosion products from the zinc are deposited on the steel resealing it from the atmosphere and therefore stopping corrosion.
7. It offers complete coverage
The fact that steel is being dipped into a bath of molten zinc means that hot dip galvanizing can provide protection to external and internal surfaces of the steel component.
Where can you galvanise steel?
The design of the component may be important for successful galvanizing and early consultation between galvanizer, fabricator and designer is the key to obtaining the best result.
The bath dimensions noted within the following pages indicate the length, depth and width of the galvanizing bath(s) at each works. These bath dimensions give an indication of maximum size of fabrication which can be processed at that plant.
It is important to recognise that these dimensions do not, in themselves, represent the maximum size of fabrication which can be dipped.
Find out more details and see who your local galvanizer is by clicking here.