How Does Gas Catalytic Drying Work?

Posted by Daniel Smoot on Oct 15, 2018 2:22:23 PM

Whether it’s convection or electric infrared, most body shops are familiar with the traditional paint dryers. However, have you heard all of the talk surrounding gas catalytic drying? The collision industry is evolving every single day. And while electric infrared and convection drying has worked well enough over the years, there’s a reason you may be hearing more about gas catalytic drying.

What works “well enough” isn’t going to make your body shop better or more successful. And with the evolution from tram gauges to computerized measuring systems, brazing to spot welding, and laquer to waterborne– why shouldn’t the way we dry paint evolve, too? Electric infrared and convection dryings works. There’s no doubt about that. But did you know what takes them an entire day to complete– plus another 100 minute process– gas catalytic drying can do in 16–30 minutes?

The collision industry is always changing. Even the type of paint we use has evolved. But there’s been little change in the U.S. over the last 100 years when it comes to how we dry it. How much money would your shop bring in if you could work on even just 2 or 3 more cars a day? Gas catalytic drying can help you do that with ease.

As experts in the field ourselves, we know that telling you isn’t enough. The facts are what matter and we want you to stay ahead of the curve and use the best technology out there.

How Does Gas Catalytic Drying Work?

There’s plenty of “revolutionary ideas” out there, but gas catalytic drying isn’t an idea– it’s a science. And it’s one that has grown greatly in popularity over in Europe. But, how does it work?

Now, The Technical Stuff

It’s not the most complicated idea in the world, but it’ll be a bit more technical. Basically, gas catalytic drying uses propane, a propane/butane mix, or methane– passing the gas through a catalyst to cause an exothermic chemical reaction. The exothermic reaction works by releasing energy through heat or light. It does so in contrast to endothermic reaction– which absorbs heat, thus cooling the surrounding area.

The gas itself doesn’t burn in the way we’re used to since there’s no source for ignition. And since there’s no flame, heat occurs only from a chemical reaction in the catalyst. However, the catalyst is composed of aluminum composite and is mixed with palladium oxide, zirconium, and platinum in order to make the catalyst last as long as possible. The reaction is then caused by hydrocarbon molecules breaking down.

To put that into perspective, the catalyst will last for roughly 30,000 treatments before needing to be replaced. However, to make the reaction occur, the catalyst needs to be preheated to roughly 140˚F with an electrical element before the gas is let in. And if you don’t preheat, the reaction won’t be able to happen. Once everything is is preheated, the gas is introduced and it all jumps up to roughly 840˚F– making the reaction sustainable for the paint drying process.

The robotic framework holds the catalysts, and the gas is carried to them and out to a series of very tiny holes along the edges of the machine. The holes blow an incredibly small amount of gas over the front panel. And with gas catalytic drying the gas consumption is roughly 70% less than electric infrared and convection dryers.

How Gas Catalytic Dryers Fit Into existing Paint Booths

A GasCat Dryer is mounted on two fixed rails on opposing sides of the booth. The robot uses one drive motor and two drive shafts. The catalytic panels are fixed on an arch to decrease breakage and reduce the number of moving parts and motors. The programming itself is pretty easy. Enter the type of material being cured, manually position the shaft stop magnet trip points to align with the area being cured, and press enter. GasCat systems can be installed in most paint booths and single arches can be installed in a prep deck– servicing up to three work bays at once.

GasCat Dryers

GasCat Dryers provide you the best, fastest, and most efficient drying solutions out on the market. We believe that time is money. With this advanced drying system, your business will reliably process more vehicles each and every day.

Let us help you save time and streamline your paint booth drying processes. Contact us today!

Topics: Gas Catalytic Drying, GasCat Dryers, How Does Gas Catalytic Drying Work?