2015 F-150 Galvanic Corrosion Concerns

Westin f150-alum-body-productsCompatibility of aluminum bodies and dissimilar metals brings out aftermarket parts and upgrades questions

It hasn’t taken long for owners of the new aluminum-bodied F-150s to start thinking about accessorizing their trucks.

One concern that’s been popping up is the issue of “galvanic corrosion,” which is the corrosive interaction between dissimilar metals.

In simple terms, oxidation in the form of rust, pitting and even metal fatigue  can occur when fasteners or parts made of different metals come in direct contact.

Fastenal, a major supplier of fasteners for all industries, says in their pdf on galvanic corrosion the “combination of two dissimilar metals with an eceltrolyte is all that’s needed to form a reaction. The electrolyte may be present in the form of rain, dew, snow, high humidity, ocean salt spray or even air pollution.”

Ford takes special precautions to prevent galvanic corrosion in building the new trucks by electrocoating the aluminum panels to electrically and physically isolate the metals. Ford also applies special coatings on all the fasteners.

But is galvanic corrosion an issue when aftermarket parts are bolted on to the new F-150s? At least one aftermarket accessory supplier is addressing those owner’s concerns.

Westin, a major supplier of aftermarket pickup parts and accessories, released this statement today related to the compatibility of their products with the 2015 F-150s:

“Westin prides itself in the R&D that goes into bringing a product to market. The process encompasses a high standard for quality and the products produced for the 2015 F-150 aluminum body are no exception.
“Westin applications have no metal-to-metal connections for any products being manufactured for this vehicle and we confidently assure customers that we stand behind our products and that Westin products live up to their warranty.”