Influence of Surface Treatments on Durability of Painted Aluminum Alloys
Increasing use of aluminum in automotive components has led to lower fuel consumption and enhanced performance of automotive designs. From a manufacturing standpoint, aluminum provides the additional advantage of utilizing same processes as steel. Performance and durability of painted aluminum cars, however, is dependent on proper optimization of process conditions. As part of an extensive study of factors influencing corrosion resistance of painted aluminum, the present study deals with the influence of pretreatment and coating variables and the interaction of alloy composition with zinc phosphate and electrocoat. Interfacial analysis of corrosion products indicates the relative influence of alloying elements on stability of the metal/phosphate/electrocoat interface. As a result, guidelines and recommendations on aluminum processing in an automotive manufacturing floor have been developed.