If you have ever manufactured metal parts, VCI (Volatile Corrosion Inhibitor) is part of your vocabulary as well as VCI packaging. But what exactly does VCI do and how does VCI packaging work?
VCI was developed to help avoid rust on metal. Rust occurs when oxygen steals electrons from iron, creating a new compound called iron oxide or “rust.” The oxygen is activated by moisture or destructive elements. In order to stop the process before it starts, VCI papers, bags, and emitters were developed. They create an invisible layer of corrosion protection which migrates from the VCI packaging and “sticks” to the metal’s surface, reaching into all the nooks and crannies where corrosion typically begins. VCI self-adjusts to temperature and humidity.
Although VCI starts working immediately, maximum protection is reached once the entire metal and its environment are saturated with VCI. Typically, maximum saturation occurs anywhere from 12 to 24 hours after the VCI packaging has been applied.