Galvanized chain wire is one the most wide spread fencing solutions in Melbourne. But do you really know what is the difference between galvanized chain wire, and the chain wire that hasn’t gone through galvanizing process? Let’s clear that one up for you, shall we.
First things first, let’s start with defining what is galvanizing or galvanization.
What is galvanizing?
It’s a process used to protect metal from corrosion. But saying it’s a process doesn’t say much, so let’s dig a little bit deeper. Galvanizing is a process of applying zinc coating on the metal to protect it from the surrounding environment and therefore helps to protect the metal from corrosion, and eventually helping to prevent rust. This think zinc coating applied on the metal has a mute silver colour.
Okay, now we know what galvanizing is, but let’s ask the following question.
How does galvanizing work?
As we mentioned then galvanizing, or thin zinc coating, protects the metal from the surrounding environment, hence the protection against water, moisture or other elements in the air that might damage the metal underneath the coating.
– zinc coating helps to stop the corrosive elements to reach the metal underneath
-zinc coating applied on iron will corrode first
– even when scratched, zinc coating can protect from corrosion. Only when the scratch is so deep that the underlying metal is exposed and zinc can’t be electrically coupled, then localized corrosion of the metal underneath the coating can occur.
Galvanizing your chain wire also protects from galvanic corrosion, meaning that in this electrochemical process one metal corrodes preferentially when it’s in electrical contact with another, in the presence of an electrolyte. So in our case a thin zinc coating on your chain wire will start corroding first and therefore protecting your chain wire from corrosion.
Will galvanizing chain wire protect it forever? Saying forever is too optimistic. Galvanisation or thin zinc coating can protect your chain wire for even decades, but it does have an expiration date. It will corrode eventually. At first it inhibits the attack of the underlying metal, but exposure to the environment will eventually get to it. Changing, wet weather or especially acid conditions can get to it. If you live by the sea, so marine and salty environment surrounds you, then the lifetime of your galvanized chain wire will be also lower because the high electrical conductivity of sea water increases the rate of corrosion, and it’s doing it by converting solid zinc into soluble zinc chloride, and then it is washed away by the sea water or rain.
You don’t have snow problems in Melbourne, but for example in the areas with a lot of snow, salt is used to make the roads less slippery for the safety purposes and car frames in those areas corrode much faster as they are exposed to road salt.
What causes a faster rate of corrosion?
In non-salty environments corrosion is mainly caused by sulfur dioxide found in the air. Sulfur dioxide is a colourless gas and plays an important role in atmospheric corrosion in urban and industrial atmospheres. It’s highly soluble in water and is absorbed on metal surfaces. Sulfate ions that are formed in the surface moisture layer by the oxidation of sulfur dioxide is considered to be the main corrosion accelerating effect from sulfur dioxide.
In salty environments, meaning in the marine environments, sea water increases the rate of the corrosion.
We’ve also written a great piece about galvanizing and galvanic corrosion, therefore we won’t rewrite it, but we do recommend for you to take a look:
Galvanizing & Using Galvanized Fencing In Melbourne
To answer our initial question which was what’s so special about galvanized chain wire, is a simple task to do. Galvanized chain wire is special because it saves you heaps of time and money in the long run because it fights corrosion for longer than non-galvanized chain wire. In the inland where there is no salty seawater, galvanized metal can even last for a century.
Hopefully that was a sufficient reason. So if you’re interested in installing galvanized chain wire, or any other metal fencing type, contact Diamond Fence and we’ll help you out!
Call us on (03) 9753 4566 , shoot us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org , or just get a FREE online quote.