Two of the main considerations when choosing a corrosion protection coating system are the time until maintenance is required, and the cost of the coating. The durability of a coating system can be estimated using Australian Standards after estimating the corrosivity of the environment, giving the user an idea of when maintenance costs will begin.
The cost aspect of the coating is usually split into two sections, the initial cost and the maintenance cost. The life cycle cost of a coating combines the total initial cost and all of the maintenance costs together to give the overall coating cost for the duration the steel is in service.
Due to interest rates and inflation, the value of money is rarely constant over time. This is taken into account when performing life cycle costing by converting all future costs into a net present value, the cost at the money of today’s value. Galvanizing has a very long life to first maintenance in most environments and often no maintenance will be required during the entire life of the project. This makes galvanizing hard to beat as a value for money protective coating.
Comparing the life cycle costs of coatings can be tricky, with a lot of variables contributing to the initial and maintenance costs. The Galvanizers Association of Australia’s Life Cycle Costing Calculator is a simple online tool which can help estimate costs and simplify the coating selection process. The tool is free to use and no registration is required.