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In the automotive industry, there is a heavy reliance on material testing. Automotive parts are subjected to stringent quality checks before they go into production. The reason for this is any defect in the product can lead to failure that will compromise the safety and comfort of the driver or passenger.
Importance of testing in each component
There are various components manufactured in the automotive industry. Each of these components has its importance and hence requires specific testing. Here are a few crucial points to help you understand how material testing helps each of these components:
- Metal testing: This process is a physical examination, mechanical evaluation, and inspection of materials. The test helps us identify defects or damage during handling, transportation, manufacture, or testing by a third. We perform various tests on sheet metals like bend test and tensile strength to their uses.
- Paint Testing: Before painting an automobile body, we test the durability against chemicals like water and heat resistance. Furthermore, there should not be any cracks visible upon the magnification, which means your coat bonding is proper with the substrate (body panel).
- Plastic Testing: This method helps determine if your plastic part will break down due to environmental conditions such as UV light exposure but also helps measure how well some plastics withstand abrasion from sand particles etc..
These tests ensure the consistency and quality of products
In the automotive industry, material testing is crucial to ensure the consistency and quality of products.
We perform material testing to check whether the materials used in a product meet their required specifications, whether they can maintain their properties under different environmental conditions, and various impacts on the performance of other components. For example, a car door handle made from aluminum alloys is susceptible to corrosion if exposed to moisture or water vapor. In this case, you require material testing as part of your certification process.
When you use metal with low fatigue strength in an area that undergoes repeated loading, there is premature failure of the component even though the maximum stress is below the tensile strength of the metal.
Numerous metals used in automobile components undergo heat treatment for good mechanical properties. Testing for the metallurgical properties and the presence of inclusions can avoid material failures at a later date.
Choosing the appropriate metal is crucial in areas of potential corrosion. Testing for corrosion properties of metals can avoid the formation of rust that can lead to eventual failures.
We do paint testing to ensure its quality, consistency, and durability. The paint must have good adhesion to the base material and be resistant to corrosion. We conduct this test on new equipment in the shop or at plants already on production lines so that we take corrective action early.
Paints undergo tests like appearance, adhesion, corrosion resistance, and gloss retention depending upon the intended use of the paint. We use the appropriate standards per ASTM/EN/ISO to judge the appearance or color quality of the coating system.
The automobile industry uses paints for decorative purposes and rust prevention, so testing for these properties is essential.
Plastic testing is imperative in the automotive industry. There are different types of plastics, and they undergo various tests. Some of these include:
- Plastic foams- This type of plastic has a high strength-to-weight ratio and provides good shock absorption, hence used for seats, cushions, and door panels
- Polypropylene – A flame retardant material, making it suitable for car interiors that pass stringent safety standards.
- Polycarbonate – Suitable for making windshields because it does not shatter even when subjected to high temperatures or pressure from exterior forces like stones flung at it or on the road during an accident.