Aluminum is an incredible material that offers unmatched versatility not possible with many other metals. Whether using aluminum for products including window and door framing, building construction, commercial architectural, tubing, docks, awnings, RV and campers or an everyday product like a beverage can, there are so many options. Across the various uses, however, finished aluminum products are not always the same. Many choose to add a finish to alter the final look of raw extruded shape to something more desirable. Read on to learn about aluminum anodized finishes, the benefits of finishing your aluminum extrusions, and how to choose the right finish for your project.
What is Anodized Aluminum?
Finishes are often added to aluminum through a process called anodization. Simply put, anodizing is an electrochemical process through which a decorative layer is added to an aluminum extrusion. In this process, the aluminum product is submerged into an electromagnetic bath through which an electric current is passed. With a cathode mounted inside of the tank, the aluminum acts as an anode. Oxygen ions are then released from the electrolyte, combining with the aluminum atoms on the surface of the aluminum extrusion. Compared to other metals, aluminum is well-suited for the anodization process because of its chemical makeup.
Why Add a Finish to Your Aluminum Extrusion?
There are several reasons why one might consider adding a finish to their aluminum products. One of the most important reasons is aesthetics. A finish simply makes an aluminum product look more appealing and polished. Appearance is a factor in many cases in which the finished aluminum product will be visible, so the option to alter the color or texture is attractive to many people.
Another reason to consider adding an anodized finish to an aluminum extrusion is protection from the elements. While aluminum is naturally resistant to corrosion, when exposed to extreme environments aluminum products can benefit from an additional layer of protection. This is particularly the case in environments where temperature, moisture, and humidity are present on a regular basis.
Choosing the Right Finish
When it comes time to choose the right aluminum finish for your project, you’ll first want to consider the overall look you’re going for and the environment in which the aluminum will be placed. For aluminum extrusions that will be installed in corporate offices, for example, you’ll likely want a more subtle and sophisticated finish that highlights and brings together all the other materials used in the space without detracting from the overall feel that was intended by the architect. On the other hand, aluminum extrusions that will be placed in retail spaces or vibrant workspaces where corporate architectural themes and branding environments are highly recognized help achieve consistent corporate branding and appearance.
Additionally, you’ll want to consider if your aluminum extrusions will be exposed to harsh weather conditions. In this case, you may opt for a finish that is less likely to show wear and tear over time. Further, you’ll want to make sure that the finish you choose for this type of extreme environment has the right thickness of protective anodized finish to minimize degradation.
Aluminum Finishes from Eagle Mouldings
Eagle Mouldings has an incredible selection of aluminum finishes to fit just about any project. No matter the look you’re going for, our anodized aluminum colors will suit your needs. From subtle and sophisticated colors to options that are bright and bold, there are so many to choose from. While we offer a range of standard finishes, we also specialize in creating customized anodized aluminum finishes to ensure you get exactly what you’re looking for. Contact us today to learn more about our aluminum anodizing services and the finishes available.