Posted on January 17, 2022

Powder Coating vs Painting: Which is Right for Your Project?

industrial power coating sprayer

In July, we researched all the things that make powder coating superior to paint finishes. Are there ever times when painting is a better choice for your project? Let’s dig deeper into powder coating vs painting, and see which is right for your needs.

Cost Comparison

Paint may be less expensive than powder coating, but buyer beware: the old adage, “you get what you pay for” is true, even in this debate. For out-of-the-gate price comparison, painting may save you a few dollars on your project, but the finish is far less likely to endure the test of time.


Liquid paint is far more difficult to control, meaning a second coat may not be as even and smooth as you were hoping. Powder coating is typically a thicker finish, however, and if you need a thin finish, painting might be a better option. For a thick, once-and-done finish, a powder coating offers durability and a smoother finish with more predictable, even coverage than paint.

Color Choices

Paint holds a slight competitive edge over powder coating here, with a seemingly limitless variety of colors and options to choose from. With the increase in popularity of powder coating, however, these finishes now also offer an ever increasing selection of colors and effects, very comparable to paint choices.

Weather Resistance

Powder coating is a more durable option than paint, and its resistance to scratching, chipping, and weather make it a better choice for products that will be exposed to the elements or that will be used roughly.

Fastest Curing Time

Powder coating for the win here, too. The curing time of powder coating beats liquid coatings, and has less Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) than paint.

Use on Non-Heated Metals

Paint holds the advantage over powder coating when it comes to finishing projects that cannot, or should not, be heated. Powder coating relies on heat application to achieve its smooth and durable finish, whereas paint is simply sprayed onto metal and left to dry.

Uniform Adhesion to Horizontal and Vertical Surfaces

Liquid paint coatings may not look uniform when applied to horizontal and vertical surfaces, as the nature of liquid is to run and pool. Powder coating covers evenly and completely, however, for a more polished look.

Powder Coating vs Paint?

In most applications, powder coating is a superior choice to paint finish, especially for durability and weather resistance. It’s flexibility gives it an even, thick coating in one application, while paint may require several applications to achieve thickness. On the other hand, paint may be a better choice if your project cannot be heated, or you require a much thinner coating.

Contact the pros at EDCO Fabrication, and let us help you make the finish choices that are best for your project.