Care & Maintenance
The life of an anodised finish can be greatly enhanced by the adoption of a regular documented maintenance programme. Any chemical attack on decorative surfaces which is not regularly cleaned becomes increasingly severe and after several years, may be impossible to restore.
A regular cleaning and maintenance regime is essential for two very goods reasons:
- To maintain a decorative appearance and to reduce any chemical attack, if applicable
- Anodised surfaces are cleaned to remove dirt, grime, grit, atmospheric pollutants and iridescence.
The cleaning procedures may be broken down into three distinct categories, namely:
- Primary Cleaning - is the initial cleaning that should occur after completion, to remove atmospheric dust, deposits of dirt, possible cement deposits, glues, etc.
- Secondary Cleaning - This is normally a heavy duty clean that is carried out on a surface that has been neglected for some time. This should be carried out by companies that specialise in the cleaning of facades, windows, doors, curtain walling etc. The most important criteria of an aluminium cleaning agent Is that it should not be toxic, have a pH within 5 - 8 and be free of fluorides, chlorides, or sulphates.
- Periodic Cleaning - This is the cleaning cycle that should be done on a regular basis AFTER the primary and secondary phase. (In the case of a new installation etc. it follows after the Primary). The intervals of each cleaning cycle are dependent on the atmospheric pollutants, area, region, corrosive level, etc. for a particular region. (Refer to Guide to selection of anodic coating thickness)
What You Should Do
- Protect exposed Aluminium surfaces until all wet trades etc. have been completed.
- Any cement or acid should be removed as soon as practical. This will prevent any chemical attack.
- When cleaning, wash down all surfaces with a neutral detergent and rinse thoroughly.
- Remove awkward deposits on ANODISED aluminium, with a suitable nylon abrasive cleaning pad or brush, plus neutral detergent, and then rinse.
To clean long neglected areas it is advisable to use proprietary cleaners specifically formulated for aluminium surfaces. These products contain residual waxes etc. and can substantially improve the appearance of worn or weathered surfaces.
What You should NEVER DO
- Use of wire brushes, steel wool, emery paper are NOT recommended under any circumstances.
- Avoid mechanical damage from scaffolding, bad handling, etc.
- Do NOT allow strong acids such as Hydrochloric, Acetic etc to come into contact with anodised aluminium.
- Do NOT allow mortar or mortar cleaning chemicals to come into contact with anodised surfaces.
- Do NOT allow strong alkalis such as caustic soda, lime, etc. to come into contact with anodised aluminium
- Anodised Aluminium should not be in direct contact with brass or copper.
Ensure that the aluminium is properly protected with interleaved wrapping in paper or plastic and ensure that the wrapping does not get damp during storage.
To ensure that the anodised coating is not attacked by corrosive chemicals, a temporary protective coating can be applied in the form of a suitable non-yellowing lacquer, e.g. methyl methacrylate or cellulose acetate butyrate, or a stripable coating or tape is recommended. Tape and stripable coatings should be easily removable and should not leave residues.
The following colours are listed as suitable for interior use only because they are coloured by immersion in organic dyes and are not resistant to UV exposure. In the same way that colours in your clothing fades over time, these colours will also fade if used externally.
As these colours are used internally, they are displayed in coating thicknesses of 10um - 15um. Thicker coatings are available upon request. For more information contact your local Sapphire representative