Fiberglass Repairs Provide an Alternative to Costly Steel Replacement and Repairs
A revolution is coming in the world of infrastructure installation, repairs, and maintenance, according to Michael Legault of CompositesWorld. It’s being driven largely by the advent of fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP) and the repairs that material makes possible. FRP repairs provide a cost-effective and productive way to heal damaged infrastructure, thus avoiding the need for costly, time-consuming replacements. FRP tanks can also serve as an excellent alternative to steel and concrete in some applications.
An Alternative to Stainless Steel
For organizations that handle fluid and store chemicals in tanks, rising stainless steel costs have become an issue over the years. That has led to “new opportunities for FRP” to compete with stainless steel in those applications. In fact, one industry expert quoted by Legault said that FRP has become “a better choice in many cases” because it both costs less and performs better than stainless steel. One company estimated that in a single project, using FRP tanks instead of stainless steel tanks saved more than $2 million.
Underground Water Storage
FRP has also found a role in underground water storage. Water may not sound especially corrosive at first glance, but as Legault’s article reveals, it can be quite damaging to materials like concrete. That’s because water, given enough time, will make its way into concrete and damage it, often necessitating a tank leak repair. However, some companies are rolling out an alternative to concrete tanks: FRP tanks, which are “cheaper to install.” They also have lower maintenance requirements.
One specific application for these tanks may be for decentralized water storage. An executive revealed to Legault that his company has plans to market FRP tanks to developers and engineering firms for use in residential communities. Specifically, FRP tanks may be quite useful for housing developments that are not located near sources of municipal water.
Along with being the basis of new storage solutions, FRP is also a powerful material when it comes to repairs. Even stainless steel and concrete materials can benefit from fiberglass repairs and upgrades. For instance, FRP linings within a steel or concrete tank can provide protection from corrosion.
FRP can also be used as a material for protecting external surfaces from harmful forces. In waterfront settings, for example, FRP jackets can repair or rehabilitate piers and pilings, which face damage from the sea. Just as is the case with tank leak repair, FRP coatings can greatly extend the lifespan of the structures they are applied to. They can even be used to temporarily plug gas and oil wells, making other types of repairs possible.
Find FRP Tank Leak Repair Professionals
The future of FRP seems bright. As more companies realize the benefits of FRP and pour money and resources into further innovations, its applications will likely only grow. Picon FRP, Inc. is a California based FRP expert and tank inspection, maintenance, coating and service provider. If you need expert assistance with your facilities maintenance contact us today or call 510-232-0065.