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Electroplating vs. Galvanisation: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 25, 2023
Electroplating involves coating an object with a metal using electrical current, while galvanisation is dipping steel into molten zinc for corrosion resistance.
Electroplating vs. Galvanisation

Key Differences

Electroplating is a process where a metal layer is deposited onto a surface using an electric current. It's primarily used for enhancing appearance, corrosion resistance, or to reduce friction. Galvanisation, on the other hand, specifically involves coating iron or steel with zinc to prevent rusting. This process doesn't necessarily need electricity and usually involves dipping the metal into molten zinc.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023
The techniques used in electroplating require a direct current to reduce dissolved metal cations so they form a coherent metal coating on an electrode. This method allows for precise control over the thickness and composition of the plated layer. In contrast, galvanisation typically involves a simple dip in molten zinc, with less control over the coating's uniformity but a strong bond formed due to metallurgical reactions.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023
In terms of applications, electroplating is often used in industries like electronics, automotive, and jewelry, where specific characteristics such as conductivity or aesthetic appeal are important. Galvanisation is commonly used in construction and outdoor structures like fences and light poles, where the primary concern is longevity and protection against environmental elements.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023
The environmental impact of both processes also differs. Electroplating can involve a range of chemicals and requires careful waste management, while galvanisation is generally simpler and involves fewer hazardous chemicals. However, the high temperatures required for galvanisation can be energy-intensive.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023
Finally, the cost and complexity of electroplating can be higher due to the need for specialized equipment and precise control systems. Galvanisation, while still requiring significant industrial processes, is typically less complex and can be more cost-effective for large-scale projects.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Process

Uses electrical current to deposit metal.
Involves dipping steel in molten zinc.
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Dec 17, 2023

Application

Electronics, automotive, jewelry.
Construction, outdoor structures.
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Dec 17, 2023

Control over Coating

High precision in thickness and composition.
Less control, but strong metallurgical bond.
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Dec 17, 2023

Environmental Impact

Involves various chemicals, requires waste management.
Fewer chemicals, high energy for heating zinc.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Cost and Complexity

Higher due to specialized equipment.
Generally less complex and more cost-effective.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023
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Electroplating and Galvanisation Definitions

Electroplating

Electroplating is the process of applying a metal coating on an object using an electrical current.
The jewelry was electroplated with gold to enhance its appearance.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Galvanisation

Galvanisation is the process of applying a protective zinc coating to steel or iron.
The bridge was galvanized to protect it from corrosion.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Electroplating

It is a method to deposit a layer of one metal on another.
Electroplating copper onto iron creates a corrosion-resistant surface.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Galvanisation

Galvanisation is widely used in construction and outdoor applications.
The galvanised pipes are ideal for outdoor plumbing due to their resistance to weathering.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Electroplating

Electroplating enhances the aesthetic quality of objects.
Electroplating the vase with silver made it look more elegant.
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Dec 10, 2023
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Galvanisation

Galvanisation is done to prevent rusting of iron or steel.
Galvanisation of the fence ensured it wouldn't rust easily.
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Dec 10, 2023

Electroplating

Electroplating is used to increase corrosion resistance of metals.
They electroplated the car parts to prevent them from rusting.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Galvanisation

It involves dipping the metal in molten zinc.
The steel beams were sent for galvanisation to enhance their durability.
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Dec 10, 2023

Electroplating

Electroplating can improve a material's wear resistance.
The gears were electroplated to extend their operational lifespan.
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Dec 10, 2023

Galvanisation

It provides a rugged, protective layer to the metal.
Galvanisation of the metal sheets made them suitable for roofing.
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Dec 10, 2023

Electroplating

To coat or cover with a thin layer of metal by electrodeposition.
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Dec 10, 2023

Galvanisation

Alternative form of galvanization
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Electroplating

Present participle of electroplate
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Dec 10, 2023

Galvanisation

Stimulation with a galvanic current
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Dec 10, 2023

Electroplating

A process of coating the surfaces of a metal object with a layer of a different metal through electrochemical means, usually to exploit different properties of the materials.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Galvanisation

Stimulation that arouses a person to lively action;
The unexpected news produced a kind of galvanization of the whole team
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Electroplating

The art or process of depositing a coating (commonly) of silver, gold, or nickel on an inferior metal, by means of an electric current. The metal to be deposited on an article is usually used as the anode and the article to be plated as the cathode, in an electrolyte solution in which the plating metal is the cation. The process is conducted in a tank called an electroplating bath, which holds the electrolyte solution.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Galvanisation

Either the work of covering with metal by the use of a galvanic current or the coating of iron with zinc to protect it from rusting
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Repeatedly Asked Queries

What is electroplating?

Electroplating is a process of coating an object with a thin layer of metal using an electrical current.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Why is galvanisation important?

Galvanisation is important for protecting steel and iron from corrosion, especially in outdoor applications.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Why is electroplating used?

Electroplating is used for enhancing appearance, corrosion resistance, and wear resistance of metals.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Is electroplating environmentally friendly?

Electroplating involves chemicals and requires proper waste management to be environmentally friendly.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

What is galvanisation?

Galvanisation is the process of applying a zinc coating to steel or iron to prevent rusting.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

What metals are commonly used in galvanisation?

Zinc is the most common metal used in galvanisation for its protective properties against rust.
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How is electroplating thickness controlled?

Electroplating thickness is controlled by the duration of the electroplating process and the electrical current used.
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Dec 17, 2023

How long does a galvanised coating last?

A galvanised coating can last several decades, depending on the environment and thickness of the coating.
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Dec 17, 2023

What are the limitations of galvanisation?

Galvanisation can be less effective on complex shapes and joints, and the coating can be damaged by harsh impacts.
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Dec 17, 2023

Can electroplating be done on any metal?

Electroplating can be done on most metals, but the process and chemicals used vary depending on the metal.
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Dec 17, 2023

Can electroplating improve electrical conductivity?

Yes, electroplating with conductive metals like gold or silver can improve electrical conductivity.
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Dec 17, 2023

Can electroplating be used for repair?

Electroplating can be used for repair, such as replenishing worn surfaces on tools or parts.
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Dec 17, 2023

How does electroplating affect the appearance of an object?

Electroplating can significantly enhance the appearance, giving objects a shiny, polished look.
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Dec 17, 2023

Can galvanised steel be recycled?

Yes, galvanised steel can be recycled without losing its protective properties.
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Dec 17, 2023

What is hot-dip galvanisation?

Hot-dip galvanisation is a process where steel is submerged in molten zinc, forming a thick, rugged coating.
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What safety measures are needed for electroplating?

Proper ventilation, chemical handling protocols, and protective gear are essential for safety in electroplating.
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Dec 17, 2023

Does galvanisation affect metal strength?

Galvanisation typically doesn't affect the strength of the base metal significantly.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 17, 2023

Can electroplated surfaces be painted?

Yes, electroplated surfaces can be painted, but surface preparation is necessary for proper adhesion.
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Dec 17, 2023

How does the cost of galvanisation compare to other protective coatings?

Galvanisation is generally cost-effective compared to other protective coatings, especially for large-scale applications.
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Dec 17, 2023

Is galvanisation suitable for all weather conditions?

Galvanisation is highly suitable for various weather conditions but can be less effective in highly corrosive environments like saltwater areas.
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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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