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February 02, 2016

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How to apply DTM paint while at sea

Waterbased DTM paint is perfect for application while at sea. But it can be tricky to apply given the rapidly changing conditions. 
Here are some practical tips on how to apply DTM at sea: 
  • If its raining -- obviously wet paint will wash right off ​a ​surface in the rain. The key thing to know is how long do you have to wait following rain. You'll need to wait at least 24 hours for surfaces to dry and in particularly muggy circumstances even longer. 
  • On a windy day -- While it's tempting to try spraying​ paint the same direction as wind is blowing for faster application, it generally will only create a huge mess and waste product. If you have to spray in windy conditions, it's much safer to use a brush or roller.
  • What to do about salt water spray? -- If you're using a waterbased DTM paint, you'll have no worries. Waterbased DTMs are compatible with salt water and solvents and the paint will not be impacted​.
  • Painted surfaces -- its fine to use DTM paint over existing paint so long as you take a wire brush to any visible rust flakes and spot paint those areas with a rust converter to prevent future corrosion. Not sure what a rust converter is? You can read more about our rust converter and primer here. 
  • Clean out equipment every day --​ you may think its OK to pick that sprayer back up the next morning, but the reality is the DTM paint from the day before will have dried or coagulated to the equipment's detriment, making an even spray impossible.
Struggling with a different set of "at sea" conditions and unsure of how best to use DTM paint? We have listed some additional technical data for AdCoat DTM Direct to Metal Paint here which may answer some of your questions. 
Or give us a call and let's talk it through. 
October 21, 2015

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How do you stop rust from taking over metal?

Rust occurs when the iron oxide in metal reacts with oxygen and water or air moisture. This "chemical oxidation" comes in varying degrees of rust damage identified as surface rust, scale formation and deep pits.

While rust corrosion is fairly common and can be troublesome, it can also be dealt with.

The first signs of surface rust are the appearance of a reddish-brown or reddish-yellow discoloration on iron or metal. As corrosion continues to the scale formation stage, it will soon form a layer of rust that starts to flake off.

With enough time, rust will begin to form deep pits and degrade any iron mass which can be particularly damaging and costly. Ultimately if untreated, this deep pits stage will lead to the metal surface's eventual disintegrate. 

The good news is, corrosion of iron is preventable AND reversible.

Using a rust converter paint on a rusting metal surface will stop the process of corrosion. Rust converters chemically penetrate existing rust, reverse the degradation and leave behind a high quality latex metal primer.

You will know when the chemical conversion has taken place as the rust converter paints on milky white and dries black upon completion.

By sealing out moisture, using a rust converter extends the life of metal and prevents future corrosion from occurring. Your new surface will be rust proof.

The chemistry works like this:

A rust converter creates a permanent chemical bond, reacting with rust and converting it to a layer of magnetite; a black iron oxide mineral which does not react with oxygen or moisture.

Rust converters are also a metal primer and bonding agent for oil-based coatings (acrylic, enamel, epoxy, polyurethane and moisture-cured urethane) and waterbased coatings.

Effectively, once a rust converter is painted on to a rusted surface, rust is permanently converted, primed, sealed and ready for a topcoat.

You might have a rusted surface that you don't want painted -- if that's the case, you should use a rust remover instead of a rust converter. We wrote an earlier blog post on the key differences between a rust converter and a rust remover which might be helpful.

Where can I use epoxy acrylic paints?

We are often asked why epoxy acrylic paint is so superior to other coatings. Adding epoxy to acrylic acts to fortify the paint and protect surfaces, particularly: 

Surfaces with weight bearing requirements.

Not all floors are created equal. Places like airplane hangars, garages and warehouses simply need to be built to endure more. Because of epoxy's crosslink system, AdCoat’s epoxy coatings can withstand heavy weight and heavy duty conditions and endure the load of cars, airplanes, industrial machinery.

Surfaces exposed to extreme high and low temperatures.

When it comes to driveways exposed to snow and concrete or asphalt in the tropic sun, the magic of epoxy paints is that they expand and contract with changing weather conditions. This means that for cold winters and hot summers, your epoxy acrylic will flex and "breathe" to accommodate the changes. Additionally, the acrylic component prevents UV light from weakening the chemical make up of the coating. This has the added benefit of also protecting the color of the paint. UV light can turn even the strongest of coatings yellow if they do not use acrylic.   

Exterior surfaces exposed to harsh weather conditions.

Epoxy acrylics form a barrier to withstand harsh outside elements including intermittent exposure to water, salt spray and moisture. Some are engineered to provide excellent protection against corrosion and flash rust. This makes them ideal for oil rigs at sea, water treatment plants, marine structures and storage tanks.

If you want to avoid painting multiple coats, you can always opt for a DTM paint made of an acrylic epoxy like ours which acts as a primer, undercoat and topcoat in one. Using a 100% pure epoxy catalyst ensures an extremely durable, bonded paint finish to metal surfaces as well as wood, masonry and aluminum.

If you're unsure of what type of coating is right for your needs, give us a call. We're happy to provide guidance.

Driveway Guide: Considerations Before Painting

How to paint your driveway floor

If your driveway is sun bleached or in need of a fresh coat of paint -- or worse, cracking and becoming catchalls for rain and dirt -- it sounds like you're ready for a refresh. 

Painting the driveway can transform the look of your home, and its an affordable and attractive option to improve the value of your property.  

Prepping the floor and following these steps will ensure you get the most out of your investment.  

  1. Asphalt must be at least 6 months old -- paint will not adhere to new asphalt so it's best to hold off painting your driveway until the time is right.  
  2. Fill all cracks -- use cement filler to fill cracks, strengthen and smooth out the floor surface.  
  3. Avoid rainy conditions -- keep an eye on the weather forecast. If there's even a hint of rain in the coming 24 hours, it's best to wait. 
  4. Hose it down -- the driveway should be dirt free as you want to avoid paint peeling up. Use a hose or pressure cleaner to remove as much as possible. Paint will cover dirt temporarily but will soon peel up since it never had a firm adherence to the driveway surface in the first place.  
  5. Tape off any areas around the driveway -- by doing so, you'll create clean lines and a more aesthetic appearance. Its especially important to use tape when painting around landscaping, sidewalks and lawn decor.  
  6. Use acrylic-based epoxy paint -- this paint is designed specifically for driveways to avoid yellowing caused by sunlight. Note: water-based epoxies CANNOT be used outside and will degrade and turn yellow under UV rays. 

Once you've followed these steps on how to paint a driveway, plant a fragrant bush and sprinkle in some brightly colored perennial flowers. It's sure to make you smile when you drive up to your home after a long day of work. ​

How to ​M​ake your ​G​arage ​F​loor ​P​aint ​L​ast

How do you paint a garage floor -- and make sure it lasts?

Once you've gone through the hassle of hauling everything out of the garage, painting the floor and parking the car on the street waiting for the floor to dry, you won't want to have to do it again anytime soon. 

Here are some tips to prolong the life of your garage floor paint -- and ensure a long-lasting result.   ​

  1. Use an acrylic water based epoxy floor paint -- garage floors are susceptible to UV sunlight, even if only a corner or sliver near the door opening is exposed. In no time at all, the exposed floor will succumb to UV rays and turn yellow. Selecting a floor paint that combines acrylic with an epoxy floor paint will protect from UV sunlight and maintain the integrity and color of the garage floor paint
  2. Use mild soap only -- Harsh chemicals found in some soaps will degrade garage floor paint and over time lead to cracks, peels and rough or scratched surfaces. Mild cleaning agents such as regular household dish soap work best to clean a garage floor while avoiding damage.  
  3. Wait one week before parking your car -- after painting your garage floor, an epoxy floor paint must have time to chemically bond or cure to form the strongest foundation possible. A garage floor that hasn't had a full week to fully cure will peel up or turn black under hot rubber tires.
  4. Avoid spilling solvents​ such as gasoline or oil -- these types of spills or leaks are unavoidable, especially if you plan to park your car in the garage. The worst you can do is let it soak in. By taking quick action to wipe up spills and clean the surface with a mild soap, you will get more life out of your garage floor paint.  

Following this advice, it's possible you can maintain a clean and polished appearance on your garage floor for 5-7 years before having to re-paint. Best of luck!  

Rust Converter or Rust Remover? Which is right for you

Considering how to remove rust?

So you have a rusty object and you’re wondering if you should use a rust remover or a rust converter. 

There's a big difference and in the end it comes down to the rusty object or surface… both what it is and the intended appearance or function you're after. 

With so many products on the market, it can be difficult to assess which rust solution is best for your needs. Here are a few points to consider when deciding which is right for your project. 

Rust Removers will... 

  • strip rust from metal using a concentrated acid formulation. Most are extremely corrosive and hazardous. The rust removal can be pretty time consuming as the acid takes a while to be eaten away. There are a few on the market that claim to be non-toxic so be sure to look for those. 
  • require soaking of rusty items in the solution. For larger or stationary objects, you'll need to coat the surface with the rust remover then cover with plastic to prevent evaporation. Often times, multiple treatments are required and care must be taken to avoid unnecessarily overexposing the surface to the rust remover as the harsh chemicals will cause pitting in the metal. Once rust is removed the item is rinsed. Some removers include a feature to prevent flash rusting which can occur to exposed bare metal.
  • BEST USE:  If you're looking to resurface metal and require that the end result be exposed rust-free bare metal, then a rust remover is better suited for the task. Think rusty screw driver or the inside of a gasoline tank... items that you would NOT want to coat with paint but rather restore to a pure metal state.   
Rust Converters will...
  • literally convert rust into non-rust using naturally occurring plant-based acids. Rust converters chemically react with rust transforming it to an inert and paintable black substance. Most are water based and non-toxic. Rust is essentially removed as a surface problem and you'll be able to coat with water-based or acrylic-based paint.  
  • apply easily like paint and the reaction is fast and long lasting saving time and money. Many rust converters also act as a metal primer and a few claim they are vapor barriers that prevent further corrosion. Most topcoats are compatible including high performance coatings required for a wide range of industrial, construction, OEM, automotive restoration and marine application.
  • BEST USE:  If you will eventually paint the object, like a storage tank, automotive body part or fence railing, you’ll want to use a rust converter. Even better is to use a rust converter and primer in one - that way you only have to apply one coat. 
There are also non-chemical options for rust removal that include sandblasting or grinding. Sometimes people have a need for combining sandblasting AND use of chemicals (i.e. using rust removers or rust converters). 

Examples:  Fine finish ornate objects, such as belt buckles, tools and architectural hardware, and surface areas such as the inside of holding tanks tend to be sandblasted or treated with a rust remover. 

Whereas large (boats, storage tanks) and stationary (bridges, fences) objects are either coated with a rust converter or sandblasted then painted. Auto body parts, including frames and chassis, are also coated with a rust converter before painting. 

Keep in mind, these types of sandblasting processes are costly, labor intensive, not environmentally friendly and require equipment. That said, the result is a smooth exposed metal surface so if that's what you're after, these options might be for you. 

In summary, rust removers and rust converters both serve a valuable purpose. It all comes down to the type of rusted object or surface you want to restore and your ultimate goals for restoring it.