Building products that are used outdoors are subjected to varying weather conditions. ASTM has developed several standards to assess a product’s durability to such conditions. For building products manufacturers, two important standards that outline requirements for products subjected to outdoor environments include:
- ASTM G155: Standard Practice for Operating Xenon Arc Light Apparatus for Exposure of Non-Metallic Materials
- ASTM D2565: Standard Practice for Xenon-Arc Exposure of Plastics Intended for Outdoor Applications
Testing laboratories use specialized equipment to simulate solar radiation using xenon lamps and advanced filter systems. This is done in order to comply with the requirements in standards ASTM G155 and ASTM D2565. This equipment uses interchangeable glass filters to match the xenon light spectrum to the light conditions in the product’s environment, making it ideal for testing products exposed to harsh weather conditions. In addition to testing direct sunlight, the equipment can also test temperature and/or moisture, which play an important role in mimicking weathering conditions.
Building products that are typically subjected to weathering tests include paints, polymers, plastics, coatings, siding/cladding, sealants, roofing, decking, railing, trims, windows, doors, and more.
The duration of exposure to weathering conditions for a test specimen depends on the type of product being tested and its performance requirements. Samples are then compared to unexposed control samples to measure color changes, change in physical properties, haze, chalkiness, durability, cracking, corrosion, strength, stiffness, and other properties.
Controlled laboratory tests for accelerated weathering can offer crucial and meaningful data for building product manufacturers when making decisions about the production of materials. The data collected from these tests can assist in improving product durability, increasing product quality, or simply assuring that current manufacturing processes are competitive.
PHOTO PROVIDED BY ATLAS MTT LLC
If you are interested in finding out more about Xenon Arc Accelerated weathering tests, Learn more here.