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Vapour Phase Corrosion Inhibitor


What is VPCI?

VPCI® stands for Vapour phase corrosion inhibitor. These corrosion inhibitors can protect all metals from corrosion damage without having to contact the metal surface directly.

Cortec Corp

VPCI is Cortec patented technology. In the world of industrial packaging VPCI stands for quality. It is well known that a far superior concentration of vapour phase corrosion inhibitor formula is used in the product as well as considerably heavier gauge, thicker polyethylene in our packaging films. It is a market leading, ‘best in class’ corrosion protection solution.

What does VPIC do?

VPCI’s mechanism of action works by vaporizing (or sublimating) off the packaging materials in order to saturate and fill the surrounding atmosphere.
Sometimes it is referred to as a migrating corrosion inhibitor.

Once the VPCI corrosion inhibitor has been given time to fully migrate and bind/absorb onto the metal surface, the action completes by forming a thin, mono-molecular layer for VPCI corrosion inhibiting protection well into the future. The layer effectively stops the ‘pre-cursor’ electrochemical reaction of water, air and contaminants that takes place before corrosion/ rust damage occurs.

The difference between VPCI technology and regular desiccant!

Moisture removal is the only action that desiccants perform within enclosed packaging spaces. This approach can reduce the risk of corrosion occurring however once the desiccant is depleted or the package/container itself is opened prematurely; moisture enters the package area and the desiccant is ineffective.

Vapour phase corrosion inhibitor packaging (VPCI) solves this problem by using a patented self-replenishing action that continues to work providing unbeatable market leading corrosion protection, even if the package is opened briefly.

It replaces legacy rust prevention methods!

VPCI replaces the need for older, legacy rust prevention methods such as barrier film & desiccant, oil-based rust preventatives, non-Cortec VCI products, and finally, doing nothing! Often many ‘work in progress’ product stores & shipments are not preserved and as a result do not arrive with the end user, defect & corrosion free, & in factory condition.

VPCI can also drastically reduce your overall labour, time and handling costs. Steps for processing/packaging are often significantly reduced with the use of VPCI technology. Packaging is a much faster process!

Often single VPCI products can be used as primary layers of packaging for numerous different items & environments/conditions. It is an easy product to maintain from inventory management point of view too. Fewer product codes and well-defined categories keep the managing of VPCI in your system, simplified.

Is there any pre or post packing parts cleaning required with VPCI packaging?

Unique VPCI technology works by first saturating the nearby area and atmosphere within the VPCI Packaging. Once the packaging is opened and the metal part removed the VPCI molecules evaporate from the surface.
You should still prepare the metal surface to which it will be applied though. Ensure it is dirt, oil, grease and contaminant free before application.

Advice on the best way to close VPCI packaging?

There are many different Vapor Phase Corrosion Inhibitor compositions and formats.
When using VPCI flexible packaging, specifically VPCI 126 bags consider an ISZ impulse heat sealer machine for optimal seal quality.

It is also possible to zip tie, zip close or tape the bags close the bags but these are sub optimal and not suitable for product that may be transported or stored for a significant amount of time.


Corrosion Inhibitor Papers can be wrapped or taped around parts. Our WSZ constant heat sealer machine can seal multi layered wax/kraft paper like these.

Does VPCI packaging need to be replaced at any point?

VPCI packaging in most formats can be considered single use, recyclable industrial packaging. This kind of packaging should be inspected regularly, removed or replaced if upon physical inspection you notice any punctures, tears or holes that cannot easily be repaired or covered with heavy duty tape.

Do Cortec VPCI packaging products have a shelf life?

For most products, the shelf life is 2 years. If a product is stored in its original packaging and used within 2 years of its production date, then Cortec is confident that product will work to the same high standards as one just finished.

Can you offer any advice on dosing and placement of VPCI products?

Based on our and our partners continued laboratory tests over many years of successful vapour phase corrosion inhibitor application, we can recommend the below guidelines for use –
• Place VPCI delivery source as close to the metal surface to be protected as possible.
• The optimal distance from Cortec® VPCI 126 for example is less than 30cm/12”.
• If the distance between VPCI 126 is greater than 30cm/12” consider a VPCI 130 foam product or something form the BioPad series. Where this is the case additional VPCI sources should be placed within the packaging enclosure.

• VPCI films should completely enclose the packaging. Consider one of our portable ISZ impulse heat sealer machines for optimal hermitic heat welds/seals.
• When using VPCI 126 film consider using approximately 6m² of material for every 1m³ of space/area to be protected.
• Some projects will call for a thicker film. An important consideration as permeability/MVTR rate (moisture vapour transmission) will be an issue for some products being transported or stored for an extended period.
• Make sure there are no unnecessary obstruction within the packaging enclosure. Vapour phase corrosion inhibitor molecules do need convenient access to the metal.


Best Practices include –

• Minimize distance between the VPCI source/delivery and the metal.
• Keep void air spaces/pockets to a minimum.
• Where a product/asset has large void spaces consider using a combination of VPCI emitters and flexible packaging.
• Anti-corrosion sprays such as VPCI 337 and VPCI 377 when used as a pre-treatment add to the efficacy and longevity of the primary layer of protection.
Final preparation work for the package prior to shipping and opening!

Shipping –

• Vent the shipping container to help avoid excess moisture or mould growth.
• Double bagging can help reduce condensation build up.
• You can use additional desiccants with VPCI. Consider the 1 x Cor-Pak® 1-MUL pouch. Each pouch can protect an area up to 1 ft³ (28 litre)

Opening –

It is often the case that preserved items arrive at their destination and are opened prematurely. Either because –

• They need to be inspected.
• The goods are urgent for the end user.
• Secondary transport, assembly and staging is required.

This is normal. Do remember though once the enclosure is opened the VPCI cannot adapt to the change in environment and so stops working.

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