What Is The Difference Between Chrome Plating, Nickel Plating And Zinc Plating?

In industrial design, the electroplating process is used frequently, so firstly let’s understand what electroplating is.

Electroplating is the process of plating a thin layer of other metals or alloys on the surface of some metals using the principle of electrolysis.

It is a process that uses electrolysis to attach a metal film to the surface of metal or other materials to prevent metal oxidation (such as rusting), which improves wear resistance, conductivity, light reflection, corrosion resistance (like copper sulfate etc.) and aesthetics enhance and other functions.

Electroplating is divided into copper, gold, silver, chromium, nickel and zinc plating and other specific processes, in the field of industrial design, especially galvanizing, nickel plating and chromium plating is the most widely used.

And there must be some difference between these three methods, right?

01 Zinc plating


Zinc plating refers to a surface treatment technology that coats a layer of zinc on the surface of the metal, alloy or other materials for aesthetics and rust prevention.

Features: low cost, general corrosion protection, silvery-white color.

Applications: screws, circuit breakers and industrial supplies etc.

Zinc plating

Zinc plating

02 Nickel plating


The method of plating a layer of nickel on metal or certain non-metals by electrolysis or chemical methods is called nickel plating.

Features: beautiful, can be used for decoration; high price; slightly complicated craftsmanship; the color is silvery white and yellow.

Application: Energy-saving lamp holder and coins etc.

Nickel plating

Nickel plating

03 Chromium plating


Chromium is a kind of silver-white metal with a blue tint.

The method of plating a layer of chromium on metal or some non-metals by electrolysis or chemical methods is called chromium plating.

Features: There are two types of chrome plating.

The first is for decorative purposes, with a brighter appearance, better abrasion resistance, less rustproof than galvanizing, and better than oxidation.

The second type is to increase the hardness and wear resistance etc. of metal parts, which is the functionality of the part.

Application: Bright decorative parts on home appliances, electronics and other products; faucets etc.

Chromium plating

Chromium plating

Chromium plating

Chromium plating

Chromium plating

Extended Knowledge:

  • Electroplating production is mainly used for heavy metal pollution in sewage and sewage, the state has strict control over the expansion of the electroplating industry, and cut down it year by year.
  • China’s electroplating process is mainly zinc, copper, nickel, chromium plating, with50% of the zinc painting and 30%of copper, chromium and nickel painting, respectively.
  • If the purpose is to prevent rust, zinc or cadmium plating can be used; if the focus is to prevent wear and tear, nickel or chromium plating is the best choice.

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