Nonstick

Life Cycle Cost

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Which one do you choose?

You save both money and the environment if you choose RilonElast - the fantastic silicone coating from RUNEX.

The cost comparison is based on actual data collected over 20 years. Our unique database now includes nonstick coating of 1'150'000 baking trays and baking trays in 500 bakeries, of which 340'000 are tinsets coated with Fluoroplastic. At each recoating event, the life span has been recorded.

We can safely say that a high-quality fluoroplastic coating has a lifetime that is only 30% longer than that of RilonElast. But since the price for a fluoroplastic coating is much higher, the life cycle cost (LCC) for RilonElast is considerably lower, or about -30%.

On top of that, silicone does not contribute to the spread of the pollutant PFAS so your choice should be quite simple - right?

Nonstick coatings

There are two main categories of nonstick coatings for baking trays and baking tins, Fluoroplastics (Flourocarbon) and Silicone.

Fluoroplastics

  • Invented 1938 by Roy J. Plunket who got a patent on Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) in 1941.
  • DuPont, an american multinational chemical company , registrered the trademark Teflon® for some fluoroplastic in 1944.
  • Today there are several producers of fluoroplastics all with their own trade names for their products.
  • Fluorplastics have physical properties that makes them slippery (they repell water and grease) and resistant to mechanical wear.
  • PTFE, a Fluorplastic coating, was first used as nonstick coating of frying pans in1954.
  • There are several types of Fluoroplastic coatings used for nonstick coating of baking trays and pans. They have different properties with regards to mechanical wear, temperature resistance, release properties, etc. The various coating systems are applied in one or more layers with different thicknesses. Prices and performance differ a lot between a 1-layer PTFE (lowest quality) and a 3- or 4-layer PFA or FEP (highest quality). RUNEX offers all these alternatives.
    • PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene)
    • PFA (Perfluoroalkoxy alkane)
    • FEP (Fluorinated ethylene propylene)
  • There is a lively debate about PFAS and Fluorplastics possible health and environmental damage. Partly on different chemical substances used in the manufacture of the material, partly in the application of the material on different substrates, partly in the use of the material in elevated temperatures on hotplates and in ovens, partly in the "burning off" of the material in high temperatures when old coating is to be removed or when it is otherwise removed. But mainly the spreading of these chemicals when nonstick coated products are finally scrapped.
  • One of the advantages of the material is that it is highly resistant to various types of degradation. This fact is mentioned today by some as a strong argument against further use as it accumulates in the environment.
  • Fluorplastic coatings are a source of spreading PFAS - Today's worst environmental hazard?       Read more about PFAS

Silicone

  • Silicon is the second most common element in the crust of the earth after oxygen, and if measured by weight, silicon constitutes 26% of the elements. Silicon is usually found in the form of silica or in silicate mineral in ordinary sand.
  • Silicon is a substance that the body needs a certain daily intake of.
  • Silicone rubber is used in medicine for contact lenses, and for household products for among other things nipples and baby bottles.
  • Nonstick coatings for baking trays, pans and tins are available as Silicone rubber (elastomer) and Silicone resin (hard).
  • RilonElast is our trade name for our unique Silicone rubber coating system (material and method).
  • RilonHard is our trade name for our unique Silicone resin coating system (material and method).
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How many months does a non-stick coating last?

Baking trays and baking tins coated with a nonstick coating can be likened to a wheel for a car. It consists of a rim that lasts for many years and tyres that are worn and replaced many times during the lifetime of the rim. How many months does a car tyre last? It depends very much on the mileage. Your driving style also affects the service life as hard brakings, burn-outs and sharp turns wear extra hard on the tyre. The weight of the car, the nature of the road surface and the outside temperature are also factors that influence. If you drive over a sharp object, the service life can be very short indeed.

It is exactly the same with a nonstick coating. How many months does it last? It depends very much on how many times a day or week you bake on it. Other important factors are the oven temperature and the oven time, but also how much steam you use in the oven. The type of ingredients and various forms of mechanical wear are other important factors that affect the life span.

Our experiences

Release properties

The release properties of a nonstick coating can be measures by recording the Contact Angle where higher value indicates better release property. We have asked IFP (The Institute for Fiber and Polymer Technology) in Gothenburg, Sweden, to analyse four samples of different nonstick coatings:

  • RilonElast (RUNEX's silicone rubber)
  • RilonHard (RUNEX's silicon resin)
  • PTFE (one type of Fluoroplastic coating)
  • FEP (one type of Fluorplastic coating)

Life length

Question: How long is a rubber string? Answer: That depends on how hard you pull it.

Question: How long does a nonstick coating last? Answer: That depends on how hard you use it.

Usage

It does not make any sense taking about the life for any nonstick coating in general terms of months and years.

Some may bake 1 time per day and others bake 5 times per day. The wear and tear of the coating for the latter is 5 times higher per day hence the life measured in days will be 5 times shorter.

Even at the same number of bakes per day the life length in days will differ a lot if you bake at low temperature or short time compared to high temperature or long time. The wear and tear for the latter is higher hence the life in days will be shorter.

The same goes for all load factors from the working conditions (see below).

Environment

The life length for any nonstick coating is gradually reduced with increased exposure to one or more negative load factor from the working conditions. The most crucial of these are:

  • Thermal wear
    • High baking temperature.
    • Long baking time.
    • All nonstick coatings are completely turned into dust after 4-5 hours in 450°C. There is no fixed maximum temperature but a combination of temperature and time.
  • Chemical wear
    • Lots of steam at high temperatures.
    • Lots of sugar.
    • Lots of egg.
    • Lots of starch.
  • Mechanical wear
    • Scratches and abrasion.
    • Soiling of the coating with burnt fat, flour dust, bread residues, etc.

The graphs below are showing the Temperature Durability and the Steam Durability for RilonElast (RUNEX's silicone rubber) measured according to certain criteria in a laboratory environment. They are showing how the life length is gradually reduced with increasing exposure to air temperature and steam temperature.

Material

The lifetime of a nonstick coating depends on the substrate's resistance to rust and other corrosion. It is enough that a small part of the surface gets rusty and the coating comes off,  for the bakeware to be in need of a recoating.

  • To get maximum life length of the nonstick coating we recommend aluminium for baking trays and baking tins as it does not rust.
  • Aluminumize steel is often used today for baking tins, but it is important to remember that it is only a laminate with a core of ordinary mild rust prone steel with a very thin layer of aluminum on both sides. The aluminum does not cover cut surfaces and is removed both in the manufacturing process (welding, grinding and blasting) and also with time when it is used in the bakery. This will cause rust to lift off the nonstick coating in small areas and the tin will be in need of recoating - not because the release properties have been lost - but because of rust. If sandblasting is used to prepare the substrate prior to coating or to remove and old coating, it also removes the anti-corrosive aluminum layer.
  • Ordinary mild steel is nowadays not often used for baking trays or baking tins as it rusts very easily and no nonstick coating will have a particularly long life.
Design

The life length of a nonstick coating depends on the design of the baking tray or baking tin.

  • The draft angle of the tin. The more vertical the sides are the better the nonstick properties must be to release the finished product. This applies to an increasing degree the higher the sides of the tins or the larger its side area is.
  • Embossings of grooves or text on the sides of a tin means that the coating gets more worn when the bread is removed.

Aluminium gets damaged

Aluminum is damaged, it softens and loses its strength, when coated with a Fluoroplastic coating because of the very high curing temperatures needed. In addition, an old Fluoroplastic coating must often be 'burnt off' at very high temperatures for many hours before it can be removed prior to recoating. Overall, this means that baking trays and baking tins made of aluminum and coated with Fluoroplastics will have a much shorter service life before they are so deformed that they have to be scrapped. It is likely that some aluminum bakeware cannot even be recoated at all, but must be scrapped and replaced with new ones. If you add that extra cost to the cost of a Fluoroplastic coating, the cost per bake will be very high.


Baking trays and baking tins made of alusteel are not damaged by the high temperatures that must be used for Teflon and other types of fluoroplastic coatings.

Total cost of ownership

When comparing prices for different types of nonstick coatings, we recommend that you calculate the "Cost per bake" to see the true Life Cycle Cost (LCC) or the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) for the various options.

Cost per bake = Coating price / Number of bakes

We offer - You choose

RUNEX offers nonstick coatings of baking trays and baking tins of both types, Silicones and Fluoroplastics, and supply according to your requirements and wishes.

However, we note that PFAS, which includes fluoroplastics, is highly controverial due to its negative impact on the environment and our health. We cannot decide what is right or wrong or to what extent the precautionary principle should be followed by others, but urge you to familiarize yourself with the question and then decide which material to choose. Read more about PFAS

Bakery Equipment

Find most of the equipment you need for your bakery or pastry shop.