GRP water tanks, short for Fiberglass Reinforced Plastic water tanks, are the market-leading standard water storage devices for industrial and residential use. With many advantages such as lightweight, robust construction, modular and sectional assembly with standard panel design, GRP tanks provide a safe environment without the risk of bacterial corrosion.
In addition, the raw materials used to manufacture the tanks themselves are resistant to harsh weather and high temperatures, which means that the tanks have a long service life. At the same time, the properties of all the raw materials determine the flexibility of the tank for any particular visit or need.
FRP (also known as fiberglass or GRP) is a fiber-reinforced polymer made from a plastic matrix reinforced with fine glass fibers. It is an inexpensive, lightweight, extremely strong, and robust material that can be easily molded using a molding process. This is the reason why more and more traditional water tanks are being replaced by GRP water tanks.
Stainless Steel Water Tank
The individual glass fiber structure is stiff and strong in both tension and compression, that is, along its axis. While one might think that the fiber is weak in compression, it is actually only the aspect ratio of the fiber that makes it appear so; that is, because the typical fiber is long and narrow, it bends easily. On the other hand, glass fibers in shear-that are, across their axis-are not stiff and strong. Therefore, if a collection of fibers can be permanently aligned in the material in the preferred direction, and if the fibers can be prevented from flexing in compression, the material will become preferentially strong in that direction.
Sounds good, which is why so many companies choose to replace old water tanks with GRP tanks. However, most of our rework is done on GRP tanks and we would like to share why.
Cement erosion occurs when the joints and steel bolts holding the panels together begin to corrode and subsequently provide a safe harbor for bacterial growth. The permeable blistering of the GRP substrate due to water penetration can also lead to deterioration of the gel coat and subsequently, the surface is highly likely to harbor and promote the growth of microscopic aquatic organisms. This can be a very serious situation because if ignored, this internal water-permeable blistering can eventually rupture and release its contents into drinking water. Not only do these chemicals have a very unpleasant odor, but they are also dangerous if they come into contact with people.
Black spore fungus is often found in worn-out GRP tanks that need repair. It can be extremely difficult to remove if not treated at the right time, which is why regular audits of the tank are recommended. Black spore fungus, like all molds and fungi, is very common in the UK as it is often cold and wet, which is a perfect breeding ground - much like water tanks. Mould is a health hazard and should be dealt with appropriately.
If you are unsure how to treat your water tank, please read our advice page on GRP water tanks and contact us with any questions you may have.