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Galvanized Steel

Friday, January 20th, 2012 by Anthony Prichard

Galvanization = Applying protective zinc to steel to prevent rusting.

For a century, zinc has enhances the longevity & performance of steel.

Zinc coatings provide the most effective and economical way of protecting steel against corrosion.

Galvanized Steel - Image 1Corrosion must have two things to occur:

1.) There must be two points (anode & cathode) ona metal structure with different electrical potential and these two points must be electrically connected to complete the circuit.

2.) There must be an electrolyte to carry the current, and for the below ground pier applications, moisture in the soil serves this purpose. In crawlspaces, high humidity and condensation serves this purpose. Zinc protects with both a physical barrier and a cathodic action.

Galvanized Steel - Image 2Barrier Protection

Zinc coatings provide a continuous, impervious metallic barrier that does not allow moisture to contact steel. Without direct moisture contact, there is no corrosion. Barrier life is proportional to coating thickness.

Cathodic Protection

Another outstanding protection mechanism is zinc’s remarkable ability to galvanically protect steel. When bare steel is exposed to moisture, such as at a cut edge or surface scratch, steel is protected by the sacrificial loss of zinc in the vicinity of the exposed steel. In the immediate presence of zinc, steel will not corrode until all the zinc has been sacrificed. This is particularly important in comparison to coated steel since corrosion will continually undercut both aluminum or paint barrier coatings Zinc is a metallic chemical element; it has the symbol Zn and atomic number 30. It is the first element in group 12 of the periodic table. Because its ion is of similar size and its only oxidation state is at a +2, it is easily oxidized when connected to the cathode minerals in the earth

About the author
I am a design specialist that has a background as a General Contractor and in construction management. I have been working in the Basement Systems network for 3 years now. I love learning how to run our business better from top to bottom.