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Fast hardeners and thinners in winter

Fast hardeners and thinners in winter

When the first cool days of fall arrive, we begin to think about how to paint safely. After all, working time is considerably lengthened, but customers do not want to wait, and expect the same quality of repairs as at other times of year.

At times of unfavorable weather conditions, fast thinners and hardeners adapted for evaporation at lower temperatures can be helpful. Their short drying time is a result of the speed of evaporation of the thinner from the surface, or of the faster forming of chemical bonds in hardeners. When using these products, we must be careful – for a surface with adequate strength to be created, time is needed for strong chemical bonds to be formed and for the paint to spread evenly over the surface. Maintaining the correct balance is a necessary condition to guarantee the repaired surface.

If we fail to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations, we risk experiencing painting flaws such as gassing, problems with adhesion, the orange peel effect, etc. For most products, both upper and lower temperature limits for application are provided. The lower limit is usually in the area of 5ºC.

Fast thinners and hardeners are suitable for application in a temperature range from 5ºC do 18ºC. By using these products, we can considerably speed up the preparation process. In many manufacturers’ systems, these are universal products suitable for use with a variety of primers and surface paints.

Similar additives may also be used in the preparation of 2K clear coats.

What needs particular attention?

You should definitely avoid using “fast” products on large surfaces, at high temperatures, and when creating thick fill layers.

Fast evaporation can be used when working with base coats, but care must be taken to avoid the appearance of so-called “clouds”. This is a basic error resulting from premature evaporation of thinner from the base coat. In this case, it would be better to create the appropriate temperatures to allow slow but steady evaporation.

Evaporation of the base coat can, however, be accelerated by using IR radiation, providing that previously applied materials were dried in the same way.

When working with infrared radiation, it is important to remember that plastic elements such as bumpers may suffer distortion of their shape under the influence of heat.

All materials and methods for accelerating drying can be used year-round, but with common sense and according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.