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What is Hot-Dipped Galvanized Steel?

At FSS, we are committed to using innovative and effective solutions so your foundation repair lasts a lifetime. We exclusively use hot-dipped galvanized (HDG) steel products to provide the most durable and reliable foundation repairs. Not only do we use American-made products in our foundation repair services, ensuring stability for life, but the products we use are also environmentally friendly.

A Brief History

The first record of zinc being used in construction dates back to 79 AD, but the first record of galvanizing was in 1742 by a French chemist. As of today, according to the American Galvanizers Association, more than 600,000 tons of zinc is consumed annually in North America to produce hot-dip galvanized steel 200,000 tons for after fabrication (batch) process and 400,000 for the continuous galvanizing process. Galvanizing is found in almost every major application and industry where iron or steel is used.

How it’s Made

Hot-dipped galvanized steel is created by dipping fabricated steel into a kettle containing molten zinc. There are three main steps involved in the process: surface preparation, galvanizing, and inspection

Hdgprocess
  • Surface preparation is typically a three-step process that degreases, removes various oxides including iron oxide, and coats the steel with a protective layer to prevent any further oxide formation prior to galvanizing. The steel must be clean in order for the zinc to react properly; this is a crucial step in the process
  • Galvanizing: once immersed in the kettle, the iron in the steel reacts to the molten zinc; this bath sits at a warm 830° Fahrenheit
  • Inspection of the newly coated steel

What Are the Other Options?

Other foundation repair services provide steel products; however, they typically use painted steel. This system involves the use of several layers of coating, and sometimes different formulations of paint. The paint is applied using a brush or spray which inevitably causes inconsistencies in the thickness of the coating. This leaves the edges, corners, and interior of the hollow structures uncoated and unprotected.

Businesses using this method are unable to provide permanent stabilization of your home’s foundation.

Fun Fact

When the Brooklyn Bridge was built, over 14,500 miles of hot-dip galvanized wire was used for its four main cables. Over 100 years later when the bridge underwent massive rehabilitation, the hot-dip galvanized wire was in excellent condition. Hot-dip galvanized steel lasts longer today than it did 20 years ago. Because of environmental laws, our air is cleaner and less contaminated with corrosive emissions. So imagine that same HDG process applied to the steel pier systems FSS utilizes in its foundation repair services!

If you’re ready to sleep better at night knowing your home’s foundation is permanently stabilized, contact FSS today to schedule your free inspection.

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