What is the Melting Point of Aluminum?

Wondering what the melting temperature of aluminum is? Understanding this crucial aspect is essential for various industries. To help you find the right answer, we’ll delve into the specifics of aluminum’s melting point and how it influences manufacturing processes. We’ll also cover essential insights about this fundamental property of aluminum.

What Temperature Does Aluminum Melt?

When we talk about the melting point, we’re referring to the temperature at which a substance changes from solid to liquid. This property is crucial for metals like aluminum, affecting how they’re handled and used in industries. 

Aluminum melts at approximately 1220°F (660°C). Compared to other metals, it’s double the melting point of zinc but half that of stainless steel. A key fact to remember is that the melting point of aluminum can vary depending on its alloy composition. Knowing what temperature aluminum melts is essential in manufacturing sectors.

Melting Point of Aluminum and Its Oxide

Understanding the melting point of aluminum and its oxide is key for industries that work with these materials.

Aluminum’s Melting Point

As discussed, aluminum has a melting point of about 1220°F (660°C). This is the temperature at which aluminum changes from a solid state to a liquid one. Knowing the melting temperature of aluminum is crucial for processes like casting, welding, and manufacturing, where aluminum needs to be in liquid form to be shaped and used in products.

Aluminum Oxide’s Melting Point

Aluminum oxide, or alumina, melts at a much higher temperature, around 3762°F (2072°C). This significant difference is important in the production of aluminum. Before aluminum can be melted, alumina must be processed at high temperatures to extract the metal. This step is vital because it separates the pure aluminum from its oxide form.

Factors Influencing Aluminum’s Melting Point

Various factors affect aluminum’s melting point, which is crucial for industries to understand and control during the manufacturing process. Here are some of these factors.

Alloy Composition

The type of alloy, or mixture of aluminum with other metals, greatly influences what temperature aluminum melts. Different alloys have specific melting points. Aluminum, when combined with other elements to form an alloy, the melting temperature can vary. For example:

  • Alloy 1100 (almost pure aluminum): 1190 – 1215°F
  • Alloy 2024 (aluminum with copper): 935 – 1180°F

Chemical Impurities

The presence of impurities, such as elements or compounds not part of the intended alloy composition, can lower the melting point of aluminum, a phenomenon known as melting point depression. 

They can be mixed with aluminum during processing or from recycled materials. It’s vital to control impurities to maintain a consistent melting point. In industry, knowing the melting temperature of aluminum at different purity levels helps in adjusting processes for melting and casting.

Molecular Structure and Bonding

The internal structure of aluminum, including how its atoms are bonded, also affects its melting point. Stronger bonds between atoms require more heat to break, leading to a higher melting point. 

Since aluminum forms covalent bonds within its structure, it needs a specific amount of heat to reach the melting point. Understanding what temperature aluminum melts at based on its molecular structure is important for processes that involve heating or melting the metal.

Pressure Effects

The pressure applied during the heating process can change the melting point of aluminum. Under high pressure, the atoms are forced closer together, which can either raise or lower the melting point depending on the conditions. 

For aluminum, extreme pressures can significantly alter the melting point. In industrial applications where pressure varies, knowing the melting temperature of aluminum under these conditions is crucial for maintaining the integrity of the metal during processing.

Practical Applications of Aluminum Melting

Knowing the melting temperature of aluminum is a foundation for numerous applications in various industries. Here are practical uses of aluminum melting, highlighting its significance in different sectors.

Manufacturing and Construction

In manufacturing, knowing the melting temperature of aluminum is critical for processes like casting and molding, where aluminum needs to be in liquid form to create various shapes and products. For example, in the construction industry, aluminum is used to make window frames, doors, and structural components. These items are often created by pouring molten aluminum into molds to form the desired shapes.

Automotive and Aerospace

The automotive and aerospace industries greatly benefit from melted aluminum. The melting temperature of aluminum is a vital piece of information for making engine parts, panels, and frames. Once cast into components, aluminum’s lightweight and strong nature contributes to fuel efficiency and performance in cars and aircraft.

Electronics and Appliances

Aluminum’s excellent conductivity and melting point make it ideal for electronics and appliances. Manufacturers need to know the melting temperature of aluminum to integrate it into products like smartphones, computers, and refrigerators. In these devices, aluminum helps with heat dissipation, keeping the electronics cool during operation.


Recycling is another crucial application where the melting temperature of aluminum plays a key role. Recycled aluminum is melted down and reformed into new products. This process not only requires knowledge of aluminum’s melting point but also contributes to sustainability, as recycling aluminum uses only 5% of the energy required to produce new aluminum from ore.

Aluminum Processing Techniques

Aluminum, known for its versatility and wide range of applications, undergoes various processing techniques to meet the demands of different industries. These techniques are fundamentally influenced by the metal’s melting point. 

Casting Methods and Applications

  • Die Casting: This method involves forcing molten aluminum into a mold under high pressure, ideal for making complex, detailed parts like automotive components.
  • Sand Casting: A versatile technique where molten aluminum is poured into a sand-based mold, suitable for larger items like engine blocks and machine frames.
  • Permanent Mold Casting: Reusable molds are used here, offering a balance between the detail of die casting and the size capacity of sand casting.

Furnaces for Aluminum Casting

  • Design and Function: Different furnace designs, like crucible, tower, and reverberatory, are chosen based on the quantity of aluminum, melting efficiency, and the specific casting process employed.
  • Temperature Management: Accurately reaching and maintaining the aluminum’s melting point in the furnace is key to successful casting, requiring sophisticated control systems to monitor and adjust the furnace temperature.

Aluminum Extrusion Process

  • Procedure Overview: Extrusion involves heating aluminum billets to a pliable state (just above their melting point) and forcing them through a die to create long, uniform shapes.
  • Application Diversity: Extruded aluminum is used in various products, from window frames and doors to automotive parts and aerospace components, benefiting from aluminum’s lightweight and strong characteristics.

Safety Measures in Melting and Casting Aluminum

Safety is paramount when melting and casting aluminum due to the high temperatures involved and the metal’s physical properties. Knowing the melting temperature of aluminum is crucial for processing and implementing the right safety measures to prevent accidents and injuries.

Fundamental Safety Tips

  • Protective Clothing: Wear heat-resistant clothing, gloves, aprons, and face shields, to shield against molten aluminum splashes and burns.
  • Temperature Monitoring: Use temperature monitoring devices to track the melting point of aluminum during the melting process and ensure it remains within safe limits.
  • Proper Handling: Use appropriate lifting equipment and techniques to handle containers of molten aluminum safely, avoiding spills and accidents.
  • Flame Retardants: Use flame-retardant materials near molten aluminum to minimize fire hazards.
  • Ventilation Systems: Install effective ventilation systems to remove fumes and gasses generated during the melting and casting process, maintaining a safe working environment.
  • Air Quality Monitoring: Regularly monitor air quality to ensure it meets safety standards and minimize exposure to harmful substances.

Additional Tips

  • Storage Procedures: Store aluminum ingots and scrap materials in designated areas with proper ventilation and fire prevention measures.
  • Emergency Plans: Develop and implement emergency response plans for spills, fires, or accidents involving molten aluminum.
  • Training Drills: Conduct regular training drills to practice emergency response procedures and familiarize workers with evacuation routes and safety protocols.
  • Fire Extinguishers: Ensure that fire extinguishers suitable for metal fires, such as Class D extinguishers, are readily available in areas where aluminum is melted or cast.
  • Implement Controls: Implement measures to mitigate risks, such as engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective equipment.

Shop Top-Notch Aluminum Solutions at FastMetals Today!

When it comes to aluminum processing, FastMetals is your ultimate destination. Catering specifically to smaller, specialized end users like fabricators, hobbyists, artists, and machine shops, we pride ourselves on delivering premium aluminum solutions customized to your precise needs. Backed by our extensive expertise and unwavering dedication to customer satisfaction, FastMetals is your trusted ally in the world of aluminum processing.

Shop now!