Antimicrobial coating

antimicrobial coating

What is antimicrobial coating?

The demand for antimicrobial coating is constantly increasing. This is primarily due to their vast applications, particularly in the health care industry. The purpose of antimicrobial coatings is to prevent microorganism from infecting different surfaces which usually are susceptible to microorganisms. As such, it is without surprise that the largest industry to use such coatings is the health care industry. Clinics, aged care and even other industries are using antimicrobial coatings to protect patients and workers from becoming infected by microorganisms. Clinics have also used these coatings for sterilizing their equipment so that it is clean and germ-free. The antimicrobial coatings market is more extensive than one might assume. Besides health care, the coatings are also applicable in:

antimicrobal coating

Research labs and schools

antimicrobial coating

Factories and construction

antimicrobial coating

Food processing and catering

Anti microbial coating

Home and leisure







The most common antimicrobial coating applications are on equipment in the healthcare industry, However, they are also suitable for many more applications on different materials. Some uses include:

  • Protecting clothing that may otherwise allow microorganisms to grow
  • Application on water-treatment plants in order to protect the water from microorganism infections
  • Using in industrial settings such as production plants of pharmaceutical companies

Antibacterial is not antimicrobial:The two terms, antibacterial and antimicrobial are often confused and considered synonyms. Even though the terms are close to each other, they are not exactly the same thing. Antibacterial coatings provide the substrate with a layer which kills bacteria. Antimicrobial, for its part, fights against microorganisms which include bacteria, viruses and fungi.

Antimicrobial coating for medical devices

Antimicrobial coating for medical devices

As mentioned earlier, the largest and the most relevant use of anti-microbial coatings pertains to the healthcare industry. Healthcare providers are continually tasked with improving patient health while reducing the risk of infection.  This has led to an increased interest in medical coatings with antimicrobial protection for devices in continuous contact with patients. As a result, manufacturers are looking to antimicrobial coatings that are biocompatible, biostable and non-toxic.

Antimicrobial medical device coatings utilize polymers infused with antimicrobial minerals that can be applied on everything from catheters to medical electronics.

Based on type of material, the antimicrobial coatings for medical devices market is segmented into:

antimicrobial coating for medical devices

There can’t be any risk of getting bacteria on medical devices

  1. Metallic coatings: silver coatings, copper coatings, and other metallic coatings.
  2. Non-metallic coatings: polymeric coatings, and organic coatings.

Based on device types, the antimicrobial coatings for medical devices market is segmented into:

  • Catheter
  • Implantable devices
  • Surgical instruments
  • Others (mandrels & molds, guidewires, epidural needles, and elastomeric seals).

Hospitals are using the coatings to make their devices and equipment germ free. Applying antimicrobial coatings to medical devices can protect both the patient and the doctor from dangerous microorganism infections.

Therefor, use of antimicrobial coatings is more a requirement than a recommendation. With increase in demand of healthcare services, it is vital that healthcare providers uphold their quality standards. It also gives patients a peace of mind as they know that the equipment being used is completely clean and free from micro-organism infestation.

Besides medical devices the coating can also be used to protect various other items. This video shows how aluminum armrests, treated with an antimicrobial copper alloy are protected against bacteria.

antimicrobial coating for ductwork

Antimicrobial coating for ductwork

Poor indoor air quality (IAQ) is a growing, national problem in Canada. The health effects of poor IAQ range from discomfort to a major increase in allergies and asthma, and even respiratory illnesses. Not to mention “mold-related” problems. A major factor in poor air quality is the indoor air pollution which occurs when mold, bacteria, and fungi that exist everywhere in the environment enter our buildings through air duct intakes, or multiply in the ducts themselves. These microorganisms put out spores that grow wherever they have access to dust, dirt, and the minerals found in moisture.

Protect ductwork with antimicrobial minerals

Antimicrobial coating for ductwork

Ductwork with mold and harmful microorganisms

A way to prevent mold and harmful microorganisms from growing is to treat them with a antimicrobial coating based on silver or calcium hydroxide. Silver and calcium hydroxide are proven antimicrobial. And using an epoxy coating with one of these compounds on the inside of ducts is proven successful in controlling the growth of bacteria, mold, mildew and other fungi.  The coatings are formulated to allow the metal to be pressed, drawn, bent, roll formed and otherwise fabricated, without loss of coating or efficacy.

These epoxy coatings offer an added benefit of chemical corrosion resistance. Coated steels are more stain resistant and easier to clean.

Application of antimicrobial duct coating

These antimicrobial coating for ductwork is applicable to 300°F, and the ceramic structure is stable up to 1600°F. The epoxy is baked onto the surface of chemically treated galvanized and stainless steels. Factory cleaning and pre-treatments ensure coating adhesion. A coil process is used to apply the coating. A mill-certified coating thickness of 0.2-0.3 mil is applied to both sides of the steel. The coating is cured at temperatures above 500°F.

Another method is painting the interior of ducts afterwards. This requires 20-25 mil wet coating to ensure a 10-15 mil dry coating thickness. The increased thickness of post-coating is required to ensure adequate coverage due to inconsistencies of field application.

A antimicrobial coating for ductwork is not a substitute for duct cleaning. Coated surfaces must still be cleaned of dust and debris periodically.

Antimicrobial coating for plastic

Plastics are widely used in manufacturing various types of products today. Plastics are essentially polymers which can be protected from microorganism infections. The coating applications increase the durability of plastic products and improves the overall quality. Furthermore,  products also appear more aesthetically appealing since the coating protects it from any types of infestations. The benefit of antimicrobial coatings is that it is applicable on all types of plastics.

Industries can be the primary benefactors of this method. In fact, items such as plastic kitchen ware, can use such coatings to increase safety for the users. Not only does this improve the end product but also creates strong competitive edge for producers of such products. The coatings can also be applied to plastic protective coverings making the cover much more effective.

Antimicrobial coating companies and prices

Because of the broad market there are many companies in Canada that provide anti-microbial coatings. Aereus Technologies provides copper coatings to prevent microbial growth. Canhealth is also a provider that caters to healthcare clients in terms of providing anti-microbial coatings. Caliwel is also a well known brand in this area.

There are different prices depending on the brand, substrate and coating type. For a standard Caliwel antimicrobial surface coating you can expect to pay $465.00 per five gallon pail.


Looking for a competitive quote? We are here to help!

Make use of our free coating quote service. Are you looking for coatings, paints, products or services? We connect you with the right coating partner.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *