Chrome plating, a process that makes cars stylish

Release time:2023-11-14
Chrome plating, a process that makes cars stylish

        Have you noticed that the surface appearance of new cars in recent years looks very advanced and easily makes people want to buy. This is because the body surface is plated with a layer of chrome, which not only looks bright and clean and plays a decorative role, but also serves as a protective layer to enhance the performance of parts.

        Chromium plating, is a process of plating a layer of chromium on metal or some non-metal by electrolytic or chemical methods. Chromium plating has two advantages: first, decorative effect, chromium-plated appearance is bright, better wear resistance, although the ability to prevent rust is not as good as galvanized, but better than oxidation; second, to prevent corrosion, increase the hardness of the metal parts, abrasion resistance, etc., to play a protective role and enhance the functionality of the parts.
        Common chrome plating classifications include: bright chrome plating, matte chrome plating, hard chrome plating, etc.
Bright Chromium Plating
        Bright chrome plating, i.e., controlling the current density and electrolyte composition during the plating process, makes the chrome layer show a bright color, usually silver-white or golden-yellow. This process is usually used on decorative parts for home and electronic products to increase their luster and aesthetics.

Matte Chrome Plating
        Matte chrome plating, i.e., by adding specific additives to the chrome plating solution, gives the plated chrome layer a dull color, usually grey or black, which prevents rusting and is relatively costly. This process is usually used on decorative parts of cars, motorcycles and other vehicles to increase their fashion and personalization.

Hard Chrome Plating
        Hard chrome plating is a thicker chrome plating layer on the surface of various substrates, which is generally thicker than 20μm, utilizing the properties of chrome to improve the hardness, wear resistance, temperature resistance, corrosion resistance and other properties of the parts.

        Chrome plating generally has five basic stages:
        The first stage, degreasing. Chemicals are used to remove grease from the surface of the metal to ensure that the surface is free of components that would interfere with plating.
        Second stage, cleaning. Thoroughly cleaning the surface helps to remove dirt and residue, such as tiny dust particles.
        In the third stage, the underlying (plated) metal needs to be treated to ensure that the surface of the metal is as smooth as possible, thus ensuring that the plating maintains a high level of integrity over a longer period of time. Commonly used methods include copper plating and nickel and chromium plating.
        In the fourth stage, chromium plating is started by placing the metal in a container with a pretreatment solution and allowing it to gradually warm up to the proper temperature.
        In the fifth stage, the plating process begins, the solution in the container is a mixture of chromium-containing compounds and the compounds are allowed to etch into the surface of the metal (through an electrochemical reaction), and the thickness of the plating layer depends on the amount of time that the metal stays in the container.
        Because of the relatively high finish of the chrome layer's appearance, it is often used for decorative parts of automobiles, such as automobile gauges, interiors, ornaments, and other cosmetically demanding parts.


        Due to the properties of chrome metal, the chrome plating layer can be used for years of exposure to the air, the metal bumper on the car is a good example of electroplating, which can normally be used for decades, and only requires maintenance on a daily basis, so chrome plating is also one of the most commonly used surface treatment processes for metals.
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