July is the peak of summer, when many of us are outdoors enjoying the warm weather and soaking up plenty of sunshine. And getting some sun is good for you — it improves your body’s vitamin D production and may also help you feel happier and fight depression. While the sun provides many benefits, it is important to be mindful of its dangers, as well. Ultraviolet, or UV, radiation can be harmful for people, which is why we wear sunscreen. But the sun’s rays can have adverse effects on other things, as well.
At LEM Products, Inc., we also know the importance of UV protection in the printing process of industrial identification. In honor of July as UV Safety Month, we answer a few common questions about how the sun impacts safety signs, tags, and labels.
Why do colors fade after prolonged sun exposure?
All color absorbs wide spectrum light from the sun. That’s because the light from the sun is polychromatic, which means that it consists of both all visible wavelengths of light, as well as those colors that are not visible to the human eye. One of these types of light that is not visible is ultraviolet. These wavelengths of light are one of the leading causes of fading, as they can break down the chemical bonds in ink and begin to fade the color on a sign.
Why does red fade faster than other colors?
Red fades faster than other colors because it absorbs more UV light than other colors. Ultraviolet waves are short and high energy, while red wavelengths are on the other end of the spectrum and are longer, with less energy. Because red pigments are absorbing more of the destructive UV light, they will degrade more quickly.
How can you minimize fading from the sun for signs and labels?
We offer numerous options for signs that need to withstand harsh environments to help protect your signs and extend their lifespan. UV ink is denser than regular ink, and it produces sharper images that add durability and fade resistance to printed images. Over-laminating with UV laminate can also provide protection and decrease fading over time.
What are some applications for UV protection for signs and labels?
UV protection for labels, signage, and nameplates has numerous applications, including:
- Signs and nameplates used on appliances
- Industrial equipment
- Outdoor safety identification
- Other applications where a sign will be in direct sunlight
Signs That Are Made to Last
Contact LEM Products, Inc. today to learn more about safety signage products that can withstand years of UV light exposure for your specific application.