Zinc is usually fabricated into an alloy when used as construction material. Usually, 99 percent is pure zinc, inundated with traces of titanium and copper. Copper allows the zinc to have enhanced mechanical resistance while the titanium reduces the risk of the metal creeping. Zinc panel wall cladding is available in a variety of styles which include simple standing seam panels used for roofing, and interlocking wall panels meant for building facades.
There are several benefits associated with zinc cladding which are overall important. But why use zinc? Here are the distinct properties of zinc that make it an ideal cladding material.
- Resistance to rust
Zinc can resist rust. When zinc is exposed to moisture and carbon IV oxide, a protective coating of zinc carbonate forms on the exterior of the metal. The zinc carbonate layer forms an aesthetically appealing bluish patina. The barrier also ensures that the panels last longer. As the panels continue to patina throughout their existence, any scratches that may have been formed on the surface of the metal get hidden. This also means that zinc lasts for a long time which makes it cost effective in the long run.
- Relatively quiet
Zinc panels are not as rigid as those made from steel or even other metals. When it rains panels made out of zinc will be less noisy than other materials. . Having a quiet interior is good for both industrial buildings and residential ones.
- Environmentally friendly
Zinc panels are also environmentally friendly. This is because they can be easily recycled. Zinc also has the capability of resisting growth of mold, mildew and fungus. This reduces the risk of moss forming on the outer parts of a building. During the production of zinc panels less energy is used when compared to similar roofing metals.
- Soft and malleable
Zinc is relatively soft and malleable. This means that it can be designed into desired shapes with ease. Such features mean that zinc can be used on a wide range of architectural designs. Zinc can be shaped different curves and angles which make it an ideal cladding material. Forming zinc in temperatures below 50F makes it brittle which is the reason why it is recommended that you use an infrared thermometer to measure the surface temperature of zinc to ensure the temperature above 50 F.
- Widely available
Zinc is widely and readily available. In fact, there are 24 isotopes of zinc, and it ranks among the top 30 most abundant elements in the crust. Therefore, you need not worry about its availability locally.
Note that, you should be alert on rampant deterioration of the building material by corrosive elements. It is recommended that zinc should not be used in areas along the coast line where salty water is present or areas that receive minimal or no rainfall at all. The salt found in these areas can have a deteriorating effect on the zinc especially when the zinc is not coated. Further, ensure that uncoated Zinc should not come in direct contact with timber that is acidic such as oak and cedar. Essentially it should be coated with a plastisol coating if such type of timber is to be used.