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Graffiti removal is not only time-consuming, but it may also be costly. Although budgets for graffiti removal on city property are in place, undesirable graffiti invites more graffiti.
Anti-Graffiti coatings sound fantastic. You put it on, and spray paint will not adhere to it. Isn’t it just that simple? The truth is that there are numerous types of Anti-graffiti coating products with varying degrees of quality and functionality. Before utilizing an Anti-graffiti coating on any structure or asking for it from your construction designer or contractor, you should have prior knowledge of it.
The main idea to understand is sacrificial versus permanent coatings.
All Anti-graffiti coatings attempt to keep paint from adhering to the surface of a building or structure. Sacrificial coatings form a clear polymer, wax, or acrylic layer over which graffiti can be painted. After an area is tagged, maintenance employees can pressure wash it clean, which may remove the Anti-graffiti coating. This is what identifies it as sacrificial. To protect the surface from further graffiti, personnel must reapply the coating. Some sacrificial coatings can withstand one or two cleanings before the need to reply. They are sometimes promoted as “semi sacrificial,” but the coating must be reapplied to remain functional.
Permanent coatings are exactly what their name implies. This Anti-graffiti coating only needs to be applied once and is resistant to solvents that can remove most varieties of graffiti paint and markers. It’s important to use a coating that can withstand both oil-based and water-based paints. Some permanent Anti-graffiti coatings are only hydrophobic and will not withstand certain types of paint. There is a lot of science involved in creating these coatings, but the simplest way to express it is that a perfect permanent coating will resist all sorts of paint and ink.
Aside from how they work, the fundamental difference between sacrificial and permanent coatings is the cost of maintenance. Permanent coatings are more expensive, sometimes significantly so, depending on the type. Permanent coatings, on the other hand, are a one-time expense if the proper type is employed. Sacrificial coatings might be an ongoing expense for many years. Because of the reduced time and maintenance costs, most maintenance personnel feel that permanent coatings are more economical over the life of a structure.
One final consideration is product experience when selecting an Anti-graffiti coating, as not all products operate as promised. Even being labelled “clear,” some Anti-graffiti coatings, particularly sacrificial ones, might leave a filmy or milky residue on the building. These products can make a clean-looking building appear dirty or aged, causing the very problem that the coating is meant to prevent. Other coatings may cure with a faint hue, which is frequently amber or hazy. This can cause a building’s colour to appear different than it should.
General overall benefits of Anti-graffiti Coatings
Sanderson Concrete applies environmentally friendly Anti-graffiti coatings on all precast concrete washrooms and outhouses. Our Anti-graffiti of choice is a clear, semi-permanent, coating formulated for application on painted and unpainted surfaces. The coating creates an invisible barrier to prevent the absorption of paint, ink and other mediums into the layer and prevents adhesion of posters, decals, tape, etc. The surface appearance stays consistent after application. The Anti-graffiti coating is non-ambering and vapour permeable, providing excellent water repellency while reducing cracking, freeze/thaw damage as well as chemical degradation, biological growth, efflorescence, and dirt build-up.