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Corrosion: The culprit behind failure in industrial construction

The sticky and bumpy orange-brown hue often found on the outer structures of your carefully constructed buildings not only dulls down the smooth metal constructions but is also responsible for weakening the core structure. 

While corrosion on the external structures is a sore in the eye, corrosion in fasteners can weaken the core structure and result in the collapse of the structure.

India, as a nation, is investing heavily in industries and construction, most of which involve metal usage in humongous amounts. With a 7000 Km coastline geographically surrounding India contributing to humidity, corrosion and its various fallouts continue to worry India. 

How corrosion in fasteners destroys steel constructions:  

Fasteners are the weakest link in the building but play the most significant role in holding the structure together. They are vital for every application and are especially important to the construction industry. 

As we know, when iron or an iron alloy (such as steel) is exposed to moisture or oxygen for a sustained duration, it leads to corrosion which slowly disfigures the metals and eventually makes them unsafe and useless. Corrosion in fasteners has a direct impact on reinforced concrete structures. It weakens the structure, reduces the bonding strength of the materials, limits the ductility, and reduces the shear capacity of the buildings. It negatively affects the durability and performance of the structure and can lead to severe damage or even the collapse of the entire structure. Thus, it is crucial to invest in high-quality fasteners that do not corrode easily. 

This blog discusses how to protect your constructions from the two most commonly occurring types of corrosion in fasteners and how to choose the most durable industrial fasteners for your steel constructions that do not rust easily and protect your structure for decades. 

Oxidation/Rusting: Most architectural fasteners are made from grades or alloys of steel that react with oxygen and lead to corrosion. Rust weakens and deteriorates steel, especially when exposed to moisture. Once rust starts, it can spread rapidly to adjacent exposed steel surfaces and severely damage the structure. When designing steel-to-steel constructions, the fasteners, and the joined items must be protected against rusting.

Plating helps protect steel against exposure to air and moisture and provides sacrificial, galvanic protection to steel. Roofix screws are coated with a three-layered rust shield russian coating that prevents rusting and protects the life of the roofing metal sheet. It also gives birth to high-performance fasteners. This type of coating is eco-friendly and minimizes the use of heavy metal in fasteners. In addition to corrosion resistance, the coatings’ lubricant threads make fastener insertion and removal easier which helps while doing repairs, remodels, and retrofits. 

Galvanic or Bi-metallic Corrosion.

Self-Drilling screws need to be paired with Ethylene propylene diene monomer or EPDM washers to ensure that they stay in place and prevent water leakages. Galvanic corrosion occurs when dissimilar metals, such as steel and aluminum, come in contact. Bi-metallic corrosion occurs most commonly in EPDM washers. Carbon in the air reacts with the washer and leads to corrosion. With time and continued exposure, the steel becomes virtually useless; this means it may lose its strength and weaken the entire structure. 

Corrosion happens around the surface area of the EPDM washers. This is why you must choose low-carbon EPDM washers, as washers from materials other than EPDM will quickly break down on the roof as temperatures climb in the heat of the day. True-blue low-carbon washers are more durable and last longer. They ensure expansion and contraction due to temperature changes, while washers made of other materials get squeezed and cause water leaks. Roofix screws are paired with the best quality true-blue low carbon EPDM washers produced by DEKS Industries, which is the leader in EPDM products used in roofing and protects against corrosion. 

It is critical to ensure that the base substance of the purlins, roofing sheet, and fasteners is made of similar material like carbon steel to prevent bi-metallic corrosion. While most people are inclined to choose a cheaper fastener alternative, like stainless steel or aluminum, it can lead to rusting faster than you think, thus adding to repair costs. 

How to choose the right quality fasteners to prevent corrosion

As a general guideline, fasteners should have greater corrosion resistance than the joined items to ensure that the fasteners do not become the weakest link in the connection. The best way to combat corrosion is to use the right materials and coatings for the fasteners and washers to help build greater corrosion resistance. If you want to choose the best quality anti-corrosion fasteners, call us on +91-22-2876 6563 and secure the best quality corrosion-resistant industrial fasteners for your steel construction.

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