Does baling wire rust?

Baling wire is made of steel, which can rust when exposed to air and moisture. Depending on the type of baling wire, rust can be postponed or happen fairly quickly.

Let’s look at the types of baling wire available, and how rust-resistant they are.

Does galvanized wire rust?

Galvanized wire can rust eventually after the protective coating wears off. It lasts much longer than other types of wire, though. Galvanized baling wire is coated with zinc during the galvanization process, which makes it more resistant to rust, even in wet and humid conditions. The zinc coating acts as a barrier between the steel wire and moisture in the environment, providing corrosion protection.

Even though galvanized bale wire has good rust resistance, it can eventually wear down over time, especially in highly corrosive environments. The zinc coating will start to corrode before the actual steel underneath, thus protecting the steel itself for some time. However, once the zinc layer is fully worn away, the steel itself will begin to rust.

Our galvanized wire manufacturing process is done to the highest quality standards to ensure maximum strength and longevity.

Class 3 galvanization

Here at Baling Wire Direct, we offer Class 3 galvanization, which offers significantly higher corrosion resistance than the standard Class 1 galvanization. Here are some of the differences between the two classes:

  • Class 1 galvanization. Our Class 1 galvanized steel wire offers a basic zinc coating that uses 0.28 ounces of zinc per square foot. Class 1 galvanized wire is more cost-effective, but will typically rust after anywhere from 2–11 years, depending on the environment. In coastal areas, Class 1 coating fails even sooner due to saltwater corrosion.
  • Class 3 galvanization. With 0.80 ounces of zinc per square foot, this premium galvanization is nearly 3 times thicker than Class 1. The robust coating is more resistant to corrosion, providing a lifespan of 13-30 years. Class 3 galvanization is the ideal choice for extreme environmental conditions.

Our galvanizing process

Here is how we carry out our hot-dip galvanizing process:

  1. Surface preparation: first, the wire is cleaned to remove any impurities from the surface of the metal. This is important for ensuring proper adhesion of the zinc coating.
  2. Pickling: the wire is then immersed in an acid solution to remove any remaining oxides and scale. This process prepares the surface for galvanizing by creating a clean substrate.
  3. Fluxing: the wire is then immersed in a flux solution (zinc ammonium chloride), which helps to prevent oxidation and promotes a uniform application of the zinc coating.
  4. Galvanizing bath: next, the wire is dipped into a bath of molten zinc at a temperature of around 450°C (850°F).
  5. Alloy formation: while immersed in the molten zinc, a metallurgical reaction occurs between the iron in the wire and the zinc, resulting in the formation of a series of zinc-iron alloy layers. These provide excellent adhesion properties and corrosion resistance.
  6. Withdrawal: the wire is then slowly withdrawn from the zinc bath. The rate at which the withdrawal takes place is controlled to allow excess zinc to drain off and ensure the final product has an even coating.
  7. Quenching: the coated wire is then quenched in water or a quenching solution to cool it rapidly. This process solidifies the zinc coating and completes the galvanizing process.

This multifaceted process creates a durable and corrosion-resistant coating that protects against the elements.

Our galvanized wire is available in stems and also as bale ties

Does annealed wire rust?

Annealed wire rusts much more readily than galvanized wire. Our black annealed wire is a high-quality baling wire used to bind a wide range of recyclable materials, from cardboard to plastics to foam. 

The annealing process involves heating and cooling the wire under specific parameters to make it much more flexible while retaining tensile strength. 

Because it does not resist rust, we recommend annealed wire for indoor applications. For exterior or wet conditions, use our galvanized or high tensile wire.

Our black annealed baling wire is designed for single-ram auto-tie horizontal balers and has excellent ductility for ease of use. We sell it by the box (black annealed box wire) and also by the stem (black annealed stem wire). 

Does cardboard baling wire rust?

The cardboard recycling industry uses a variety of baling wire finish types to bind OCC into bales. Rust resistance varies greatly based on the type of wire. Here are the types of wire we offer for cardboard recycling.

  1. Bright finish. Our double loop bale ties are available in a bright finish, meaning that the raw steel is unprotected from the elements. While the bright finish looks attractive, it is not recommended for environmental conditions that involve moisture.
  2. Galvanized finish. We sell galvanized stem wire and galvanized single loop bale ties for use in vertical baling machines. The galvanized finish resists rust, and our optional Class 3 galvanization increases corrosion protection even further.
  3. Black annealed finish. We sell black annealed wire by the box and the stem, as well as black annealed single loop bale ties for auto-tie balers. Our black annealed wire has a small amount of corrosion resistance but is not recommended for applications in which bundles are exposed to moisture.

Baling wire products we offer

Baling Wire Direct sells the following high-quality baling wire products.

Baling Wire FAQ

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