How to Choose a Parylene Coating Company
Choosing a Parylene coating company is a critical decision that can influence your product’s quality and, therefore, your company’s brand equity and profit.
For example, if you choose a Parylene conformal coating supplier that initially exceeds quality expectations, but quality slowly declines, it could lead to repairs, warranty claims, downtime, and unnecessary risk, all associated with your product.
No matter what industry you work in or what type of electronic product you design and produce, you should understand how to select the best Parylene coating company to fit your needs. This post will explain how to ensure you choose the best supplier.
Step One: Ensure the Company is Stable and Reputable
Perhaps the worst-case scenario is choosing a Parylene company that is unstable and closes without warning. To prevent this from happening, learn about the company’s leadership and read recent press releases to ensure that the company is well managed and innovative. Determine how long the company has been in business and look for an upward growth trend.
References are an assurance of a company’s reputation. NDAs can cause difficulties in this area, but an excellent Parylene company should have testimonials and case studies on its website. Other ways to gauge reputation include looking into QA certifications, such as ISO9001. This certification ensures that the industry has verified the vendor’s commitment to QA.
Step Two: Look into the Company’s Capabilities
As you evaluate Parylene companies, ask your prospects about their processes and what types of projects they can accommodate. Determine if they can do a quality job, no matter how complex your component is or how many units need coating. Turnaround time is a common concern, so ask about its equipment and how many units it can house.
Look into the Parylene service provider’s technologies so you can take advantage of any benefits the technology might yield, such as cost reduction. Masking and demasking can be costly and labor-intensive, so be sure to ask if your prospect has any technology available to simplify the process.
With Parylene, rework is also a concern, so it is worth asking the company about its capabilities in this area, too.
Step Three: Identify a Company with Relevant Experience
If you were looking for a conventional conformal coating, you would want a provider that had experience with epoxies, acrylics, urethanes, and silicones that could give you a broad view of your options and the pros and cons of each. However, if you know you need Parylene for your application, look for a company with experts dedicated to Parylene.
When an engineer has Parylene-specific experience, they can identify ways to navigate around typical problems, proactively identify potential issues, and they will have the required knowledge to provide a more customized solution for your business.
Finding Parylene providers that have experience with mass production can be difficult, so if this is a requirement for you, it’s a good idea to ask specific questions about your prospect’s abilities to meet this need.
Step Four: Gauge Customer Support and Avoid Surprises
If all goes well, your project will be successful, and you will be in an enduring partnership with the Parylene company you choose. In this case, you would likely prefer a dedicated account manager who responds to questions and concerns promptly and courteously. If you anticipate needing much support, ask if you will have an account manager dedicated to your project, how easy it is to get in touch with engineering, and ask how much assistance you can expect from the technical team.
Finally, either research ahead of time or choose a turnkey Parylene solution to avoid surprises. A turnkey solution provider will coordinate the skill, material, equipment, and processes required to implement Parylene coatings. If you prefer to coordinate between different suppliers that offer these resources separately, however, speak to each one before making any decision to keep everyone accountable.
Tips and Recommendations:
- Ask your prospect about their quality assurance strategies and quality track record.
- If you have difficulty getting transparent answers or even in touch with a potential supplier during evaluation, this may be a bad sign.
- Keep your long-term plan in mind. If you start with small batches but plan to ramp up to mass production, ensure the supplier has experience with both.
- Align manufacturing and shipping locations to your needs if you plan on working with a coating-as-a-service business model. Look for a supplier with multiple, convenient locations.
Remember that as you select a Parylene company, a lot can be at stake in terms of cost and reputation if you make the wrong choice. However, remember that you will likely be in a long-term relationship with your Parylene company, too. Make sure you evaluate each supplier and their capabilities closely but don’t forget to choose a company you will enjoy partnering with.
If you have any questions for our engineering team about Parylene services, contact us today.
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