Main Factors to Consider before Opting for Black Oxide Coating

11 October 2022

Manufacturing companies carry out many processes to ensure that they come up with high-quality parts and products out of durable materials. One of the materials they would often maximise and take advantage of is metal.

Manufacturers mainly utilise metals thanks to their accompanying strength, durability, cost-efficiency, and longevity. And with these qualities alone, they can easily provide industries such as automotive, electronics, food processing, and power their product needs. Now, one common thing about these industries is they would often subject metal parts and products to various conditions. As time passes, they might get damaged by the surrounding elements. Hence, they are recommended to be coated with a compatible surface treatment.

One surface treatment that manufacturers can maximise is black oxide coating.

Black Oxide Coating Quick Overview and Benefits

The black oxide coating is a surface treatment wherein metal parts and products are subjected to an electrochemical or chemical treatment, making their surfaces become matte black. During this process, manufacturers immerse workpieces in an alkaline aqueous salt solution, with temperatures reaching approximately 140 degrees Celsius. 

The formation of the matte black finish is generated by the interaction between the iron component of ferrous metal alloys and the oxide bath. Their interaction produces magnetite, a compound that introduces the changes on their surface finish.

By subjecting parts and products to black oxide coating, their appearance is expected to improve. These parts and products can likewise achieve enhanced dimensional stability and reduced light reflection on their surface. Their thickness may even increase a little bit.

Factors to Consider before the Coating Process

If you are thinking of subjecting your metal parts and products to black oxide coating, you must consider the following factors first before opting for the said process.

Desired Appearance: As mentioned earlier, metals that have been subjected to black oxide coating can boast improve appeal. But the appeal of the said parts can be subjective. And so, if you want to have parts and products with a matte black appearance, you can proceed with the black oxide coating. Alternatively, parts and products with glossy finish may have to be subjected to other processes.

Protection Duration: Another factor you must consider before opting for black oxide coating is the required protection duration. This specific process can provide lengthy corrosion resistance properties to parts and components. However, if they will be used in a high-temperature environment, you may want to opt for other surface treatments as black oxide finish tends to wear off when exposed to the said environment condition.

Environment: Black oxide finish, as previously stated, may not last for a long time if it is applied to parts that will be used in a high-temperature environment. Additionally, this finish may also wear off promptly once parts and products are exposed to specific levels of humidity and vapour. Only maximise this coating type if your parts and products will be used primarily indoors or at optimum temperature, humidity, and vapour levels.

Black oxide coating may have some limitations, but it can still be useful for components used in the automotive, military, medical, and electrical industries. To attain this surface treatment, you can contact us at Alpha Detroit Heat Treatment.

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