What to expect from metals

At Extremis we don’t like to make compromises, our outdoor furniture needs to be strong, durable, low-maintenance, and beautiful all at once. In our search for materials that can truly stay outdoors, last more than a lifetime, and don’t need protective covers we’ve found that metals fit the bill!

To protect metal products from damage and wear, both indoors and outdoors, a durable finish coat is essential. At Extremis, we offer powder coated metals and hot-dip galvanized steel finishes. While these finishes are comparable with one another, they’re far from the same, and each one produces different outcomes.

What to expect from metals

Galvanization is an extremely durable method to protect the steel from rusting. This star-spangled coating absorbs corrosive materials before they can reach the metal. From a maintenance point of view, we always suggest opting for galvanization, however, it only comes in one color - silver.

Powder coated products demand a bit more maintenance but do come in a wide range of colors to choose from. This technique provides a strong and even finish that makes the metal resistant to rust and corrosion.

Galvanized

The George Clooney of coating techniques

Furniture with galvanized surfaces are masters at camouflaging dirt. If you’re not big on cleaning, this is your go-to choice! This rough, patterned material is ‘the George Clooney’ of coating techniques as it gets more beautiful with age... At first, galvanized pieces are shiny, metallic silver but gradually they become matte under the influence of sun and rain. Combined with the natural patina of our wooden finishes, the entire piece gets a silvery-grey and timeless appearance.

Galvanized steel is the ideal material for outdoor, low-maintenance, and intensively-used spaces such as public places, educational settings, and all-weather spaces. The material is known for its durability against the elements and its sturdy, impregnable surface that makes it nearly impossible to get scratches on.

While galvanization is an energy-intensive process, the extreme durability and recyclability of the steel make up for this. The specific process we use even received the Cradle2Cradle certificate from the Products Innovation Institute (US).

Colors? Unlike powder coating, zinc coatings are available in only one color — silver. 

How does it work? Galvanization is the practice of dipping steel in hot, molten zinc. This process makes the structure last longer – about 50 to 100 years (!) - and low-maintenance. When exposed to moisture from outdoor environments, the protective zinc layer protects the furniture from rust.   

Damage? If the layer gets damaged, the metal under it will start rusting. However, any damage can be touched up with zinc paint available from any DIY store. 

Powder coated

An even finish in a wide variety of colors

Powder coating is a resilient, durable, versatile, and attractive finish to our products. Powder coatings prove to be a worthy match when compared to the durability of galvanized steel. It lasts for years under the most intense weather conditions and provides protection from wear, rust, weathering, and also fading when exposed to outdoor elements.

The beauty of powder coating is that it provides an even finish along the surface of the furniture without marks of running, dripping, or sagging. While galvanizing comes in metallic silver, powder coatings come in a wide variety of colors that matches your furniture setting with any colored theme. Another clear benefit of powder coating is how environmentally friendly the process is from preparation to completion.

Colors? Powder coating comes in many colors to give a stylish look to your outdoor furniture that matches your area. We must warn you to only choose white powder coating when you are willing to clean the surface regularly. There is nothing uglier than a dirty piece of design furniture, right? 

How does it work? Powder coating is a technique of applying dry paint. The powdered paint is electrostatically charged and sprayed onto the metal. The piece is then placed in an oven and the powder particles melt and coalesce to form a continuous film, that is durable and resistant to chips and corrosions.

Damage? Although powder coats create a “shell” or “skin” around the piece, it isn’t 100% damage proof. When abused or not properly maintained, the coating can get scratched, or even chip or crack. If these damages extend to the underlying metal, it is recommended to touch up the paint. For small damages, you can use a touch-up marker. For bigger damages, we have touch-up spray cans. Please advise Extremis for the proper use of this.

Choose wisely

Galvanized, powder coated or wooden?

Chipping, fading, and corrosion are common concerns when deliberating over the use of galvanized versus powder coated versus wooden finishes for outdoor furniture. Depending on the intensity of use, placement, aesthetics, and maintenance, each choice has its own pros and cons. 

Powder coated materials are easy to maintain and will not change color, however, they are more prone to scratches than galvanized steel materials. A scratch on a powder coated surface can be touched up with a marker, but applying a new powder coating is expensive. A scratch on a wooden surface can be sanded, or in the worst case, replaced by a new wooden part.

Learn more about wood →