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National Coil Coating Association

Why Textured Products are Shaping the Future of Architectural Design in the U.S.


In the 1980s, a new trend in architectural design blossomed in European countries such as Germany and Poland. European-based metal coil coating companies began to manufacture painted metal products that were textured and were being used in both commercial and residential applications. These innovative coating technologies helped expand the visual, durability, and eco-friendly possibilities of coil coated metals. However, it wasn’t until the last five years that the trend took hold in the U.S. As more color and pattern options become available to the market, architects across the U.S. have been incorporating textured products into their design considerations.


“It’s an exciting time for the coil coating industry,” said Marc Fullem, sales manager for architectural, with Steelscape, an NCCA member company. “We’re seeing innovations out there that are going to change the industry. Customers can now get the right look and texture to meet a certain need for a project that a flat paint can’t provide. I firmly believe that there is a trend where designers and consumers want more than just the standard colors and will continue to demand more choices.”


While textured paint is often found in roofing applications for its environmental benefits, the visual and textural innovations of recent years have opened up textured products to a number of different residential, OEM, and commercial applications. Churches, firehouses, barns, and many other types of buildings are using textured paints to recreate the rustic feel of wood, stucco, brick, single skin metal panels, stone, or asphalt. Textured paint works well in a wainscoting, garage door, or a side wall application, where the textures can be viewed and felt up close.

Aesthetic Benefits of Textured Products


There are a number of different aesthetic benefits from choosing textured products. Textured paint and tiles can be made to resemble the textures of countless materials, including asphalt, stone, concrete, barn siding, and other materials. With the growing number of textures and finishes available, architects can meet client demands for visual depth and eye-catching designs that differentiate them in the market and give their buildings a unique look.


“The popularity of textured products stems from its more aesthetically pleasing and visually attractive look that comes from its low-gloss finish,” said Rob Roy, market development manager with Beckers Group, an NCCA member company. “With its textured wrinkle surface, it keeps the same look regardless of the angle, and consumers respond very well to the feel of textured products.”

Most designers find that textured products are just as durable and perform as well as any other painted metal system. Contrary to popular belief, dirt and debris becoming trapped within the paint’s texture is not an issue for concern. As technology advances, the manufacturing processes for textured products have become as seamless as any other paint system.

Durability of Textured Products


Textured paint is designed to be scratch-resistant and reduces the appearance of oil canning, dents, and other imperfections that may occasionally be found on long panels. And for high traffic areas, textured products have the benefit of repelling fingerprints which can sometimes be highly visible on flat painted metal products.


When it comes to installation, many contractors agree the low-gloss finish and less-slippery feel gives textured products an advantage compared to conventional paint. Like other prepainted metals, textured products are designed to withstand harsh weather elements and provide excellent corrosion resistance. This performance is achieved through pretreatment, multiple coatings, and in many cases through the application of the coatings to both sides of the metal, which enhances its long-term durability. For some applications, the coating itself receives an additive that creates a wrinkled appearance. With that, it’s able to hide possible defects of the substrate and reflect light at different angles to give the paint a unique finish.


“With materials like coarsened steel, you are able to print and achieve the aesthetic without the cost, heaviness, or mess of the steel flaking off to give it a ‘weathered’ look,” said Robyn Ommen O'Brien, marketing representative with Valspar, an NCCA member company. “With metal building products, you’re able to deliver the look and feel with better longevity.”

Environmental Benefits of Textured Products


The use of prepainted textured products delivers several environmental and sustainability benefits. Designers who use these products can help qualify their buildings and earn credits and tax savings for LEED, Energy Star and cool roof compliance. In the context of LEED, using textured products on metal roofs can earn points toward LEED certification through reducing the urban heat island effect. The coating accomplishes this through the application of solar reflective materials that reduce the temperature of the building, thus lowering the need for air conditioning within the building.

In addition, by keeping roofs cooler, reflective coatings also extend the life of the roof, saving on replacement costs. Buildings that use prepainted textured products also reduce waste with landfill materials, CO2 emissions, and the roof surface temperature by up to 50 percent.


“'Green' is something we all embrace, and many companies have achieved it,” Fullem said. “We are all looking to expand the color palette and other options to meet more stringent energy requirements.”

NCCA expects to see the trend in use of prepainted textured metal building products continue to grow in the architectural community. These products offer a myriad of benefits both to the specifier and the end user. As manufacturers offer more and more texture offerings, it will be possible to obtain nearly any desired look with textured materials while reaping the durability and environmental benefits.


Leslie Schraff


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