Q-Lab offers a wide variety of physical testing, evaluation and measurement services at its Florida and German facilities, including color, gloss, mechanical testing, and much more.
Quantify Your Exposure Testing Results
It is important to quantify the results of any exposure testing program. Typically, customers are interested in the amount of change their material experiences during the exposure. Change in some properties, like color or gloss, can be measured with specialized optical measurement instruments. Change in other physical properties can be measured with mechanical testing. Other changes like cracking, peeling, chalking, blistering, or rusting can be evaluated visually and rated according to standard scales.
Our staff members at our facilities in Florida, Arizona and Germany are actively involved in standards organizations and are extremely familiar with evaluation techniques and reporting scales. Visual evaluation reports detail all defects observed, including cracking, blistering, peeling, chalking, adhesion, color change and corrosion. All visual ratings are made under standard lighting conditions to provide accurate, repeatable results.
Examples of visual evaluations (and applicable methods) include:
- Chalk - ASTM D4214, ISO 4628-6
- Blistering - ASTM D714, ISO 4628-2
- Cracking - ASTM D661, ISO 4628-4
- Checking - ASTM D660, ISO 4628-4
- Flaking/Scaling - ASTM D772, ISO 4628-5
- Erosion - ASTM D662
- Mold, Mildew, and Fungus - ASTM D3274
- Dirt Retention - ASTM D3274
- Gray Scale - ASTM D2616, AATCC EP1
- Adhesion - ASTM D3359
- Corrosion - ASTM D610, ASTM D1654, ISO 4628-3 & -8
- Filiform Corrosion - ASTM D2803, ISO 4628-10
Color and Gloss Measurements
Instrumental measurements of appearance and surface characteristics include gloss, distinctness of image, and color. These are used in place of, or in addition to, the visual ratings. Electro-optical measurements are required by many standards, and provide the data from which statistical calculations can be made.
Mechanical Tests, Including New Tensile Testing Service
Mechanical tests on physical properties are necessary for many products and materials. These tests include:
- impact & pencil hardness
- tape adhesion & tape chalk
- bend & abrasion
- adhesion & tensile testing
- load at break & elongation
- shear & peel strength
- gravelometer chip impact testing
Q-Lab Florida can perform tensile, load at break, elongation, shear and peel testing using our recently acquired Instron Universal Testing Machine. Tensile testing is typically performed before and immediately following your exposure testing, allowing you to compare results and determine changes in the specimen’s physical properties. We can test according to numerous standards including ASTM D412, ASTM D638, ASTM D882, ASTM D1876, ASTM D5304, plus many others. We can perform testing up to 1000 Kgf on a variety of materials including: rigid plastics, films, membranes, textiles, threads, rubber, sealants, and more.
Additional Services, Including Digital Photography
A complete test program often includes other special services or handling. Common services include washing, polishing, scribing and specimen weighing. Q-Lab can also visually record weathering and lightfastness changes through digital photography.
Frequency and Reporting
Evaluations and measurements can be scheduled on any time-frame. The property of interest is measured or rated prior to exposure. Evaluations are then performed on a monthly or quarterly basis to quantify the progress of the test specimen. Reports are used to chart the time/degradation progress in both hard copy and electronic data formats.
Please contact Q-Lab for more information on our test services, which may be available in Florida, Arizona, Germany, or all locations.