Understanding aluminium corrosion

If you are dealing with aluminium products in your workplace, you will need to understand the process of the aluminium corrosion. If you want to be able to offer aluminium products that will stand the test of time, comprehension of corrosion is essential.


The first aspect that needs to be taken into consideration when it comes to the corrosion of aluminium is the fact that aluminium does not rust when it is exposed to harsh weather elements. This is one of the major benefits to using aluminium in these products. Unfortunately, it can still experience corrosion over time. This corrosion will cause the aluminium to become dull and may create indentations in the metal if it continues to be exposed to the corrosive conditions. If this happens, these indentations can get filled with oil, grease, dust and calcium, making it impossible to clean and potentially rendering the product useless. Additionally, aluminium can experience staining if it is exposed to water for too long.


The corrosion of aluminium is caused by the creation of aluminium oxide. As soon as the metal is exposed to the elements that cause the corrosion, aluminium oxide will begin to generate. Unlike rust, aluminium oxide will protect the rest of the product from further damage, such as flaking or cracking. However, aluminium oxide is a dull grey colour, which will make the product look as though it needs to be cleaned and polished.


If you want to make sure that your aluminium products are able to keep up with the elements that can create corrosion, you will need to get them tested properly. These tests are conducted by a cyclic corrosion tester. This tester will expose the aluminium product to elements that would normally cause natural atmospheric corrosion. During this process, the aluminium will be exposed to a series of different environments on a repetitive cycle that will mimic common real-world conditions. The type of machine used will determine what the product will be exposed to. In most cases, salt spray and Prohesion® tests are conducted. Additionally, a multitude of cyclic automotive tests may be performed in order to create further data regarding how the aluminium will react to certain elements.


These tests are necessary if you want to know that the product you are releasing onto the market can withstand the corrosion of aluminium that comes with natural atmospheric elements. If your product does not meet the desired specifications, you may need to change your product to make it stronger.


It is essential to get your products tested at a lab that has the best equipment. At Avatar Solutions we supply leading equipment to a number of laboratories, including corrosion testing systems. If you are in need of an upgrade, or want to find out more information about our products, you can visit our website www.avatar-solutions.co.za.