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Corrosion and repair of corrosion damage are multi-billion dollar problems. Estimates show metallic corrosion costs the United States approximately $297 billion annually, or about 3% of the national GDP. Although corrosion is a natural phenomenon, and can never be completely eliminated, utilizing adequate corrosion protection systems in harsh environments can drastically reduce the costs. Hot-dip galvanizing after fabrication is a cost effective,  maintenance-free corrosion protection system that lasts for decades even in the harshest environments. For more than 100 years, hot-dip galvanized steel has been utilized extensively to combat corrosion in major industrial environments including petro-chemical, transportation, and public utilities.

The zinc of the hot-dip galvanized coating is more corrosion resistant than bare iron and steel. Similar to steel, zinc corrodes when exposed to the atmosphere; however, zinc corrodes at a rate approximately 1/30 of that for steel. Also like steel, zinc corrodes at different rates depending on its environment. Therefore, the performance of hot-dip galvanized steel varies from environment to environment. Environments in which galvanized steel is commonly used include indoor and outdoor atmospheres, the storage of hundreds of different chemicals, in fresh water, sea water, soils, concrete, and/or in conjunction with other metals, treated wood, or extreme temperatures. Because of the many years galvanizing has been used for corrosion protection, a wealth of real-world, long-term exposure data on zinc coating performance in a wide variety of environments is available. Because hot-dip galvanized steel is used in so many different applications, it is important to understand what factors affect its performance in each of these environments.

Developed in 2010, this 16-page publication details hot-dip galvanized steel’s performance in various environments. 

The AGA has translated this publication into Spanish. This publication is only available to download as  a PDF.

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Available for download in PDF format. Terms of Use.

Copies of this resource are available for purchase. Architects, engineers, and other specifiers in North America may request a single copy of any publication at no charge, unless otherwise indicated. Multiple copies require a $25.00 (US funds) minimum order, plus shipping and handling. Prepayment is required. (Member galvanizers are not eligible for complimentary printed copies and require a $75.00 minimum order.) Non-member galvanizers must contact the AGA directly at 720-361-4483.

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