Manufacturers Control Costs With Prepainted Metal
July 15, 2009
CLEVELAND - In today's economy, many companies are finding that converting to coil-coated metal is a great option to keep costs in check, while also improving quality.
When manufacturers use prepainted metal for their products, the painting process is completed by the coil coater, which reduces manufacturers' overall costs. This is due to the many direct and indirect costs associated with painting products in-house, including materials, maintenance of equipment, energy and manpower to operate an in-house paint shop, as well as clean-up and reporting costs to meet EPA standards. Paint and coatings are some of the most regulated areas in manufacturing due to their flammability, potential health risks to employees and release of VOCs into the environment. With prepaint, the coil coater now is the one responsible for cleanup, meeting new environmental requirements and reporting to the EPA.
In addition to the cost savings brought about by outsourcing to a coil coater, there is another indirect benefit. By eliminating an in-house paint shop, manufacturers free up factory floor space for other more profitable uses. Prepaint also reduces the cost of work in process inventory.
On top of the cost savings, coating quality is often improved when prepainted metal is used. Because prepainted metal is coated by unwinding the metal coil, cleaning, pretreating and painting the metal flat, the coating is applied more evenly than other methods. Painting metal flat allows for consistency in film application and color uniformity, so the edge-to-edge and side-to-side variability is virtually eliminated, enhancing long-term durability. The coil coating process can apply up to four different paints in one efficient operation before being re-rolled and sent the manufacturer for fabrication.
When compared to in-house painting, the coil coating process is the most efficient, least wasteful and most environmentally friendly option.