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Purchasing a Geomembrane? Factors to Consider

Worker Installing Tar Foil
Geomembranes are used by a variety of industries. Their primary purpose is to keep liquids from soaking into the soil or ground that the membrane is protecting. This can help to prevent chemicals from leeching into soil or prevent heavy rains from eroding a hillside.
If you are looking to purchase a geomembrane, you must understand the many different types available. Geomembranes can be made from different types of polyethylene, polyester, bitumen, polysulfide, vinyl chloride, polypropylene and polyethylene, and each material has its own unique characteristics and benefits.
You need to focus on the characteristics that each material has and whether that is a benefit or need for your project to help you select the geomembrane that is ideal for your situation. Here are a few of the factors you should consider as you select a geomembrane.
UV Resistance
The first factor to carefully consider when you are looking to select a geomembrane is the material's UV resistance. Some types of geomembranes are able to repel or block the sun's ultraviolet rays, while others are more readily damaged by these rays.
Carefully consider the weather elements where you live and how much sun the geomembrane will be exposed to. If the membrane will be exposed to direct sunlight, you want a membrane that can stand up to UV rays without rapidly deteriorating.
Resistance to Chemicals
Another important element to consider as you select a geomembrane is the material's ability to withstand the chemicals that it may come into contact with. You may use a variety of chemicals within your factory or warehouse, which is why you need a geomembrane. Unfortunately, certain chemicals can cause certain membrane materials to wear, crack, shrink, or become otherwise damaged.
This shortens the lifespan of the geomembrane and may allow chemicals to seep through the membrane in the damaged area. Consider what chemicals your geomembrane will be subjected to and find a material type that can handle these chemical types.
Flexibility
Different geomembrane materials are easier to work with and lay. They may be more flexible, have more give to them, or have more stretch to them. The more flexible the material is, the easier it will be to lay, which may decrease your installation costs.
However, flexibility is not always beneficial. Sometimes, you may want a membrane that has no stretch or give, as you want the membrane to hold tightly and firmly in place. Always pay close attention to the flexibility each membrane material has and then consider whether you desire flexibility or not.
Water Permeability
The final important factor take into consideration when you are selecting a geomembrane is how much water they let through, or their permeability. Some materials are waterproof - they do not let anything pass through them. Others materials are not waterproof and may allow a small amount of moisture to pass through when they are submerged in a liquid.
In some cases, you need to keep all liquid out of the ground below the geomembrane. You can be fined by the EPA if chemicals from your facility leech through the soil outside your building. In this case, you want a geomembrane that does not allow any water to pass through.
In other cases, it may be fine if a tiny amount of water passes through, as long as the bulk of the water doesn't seep through. Consider your needs and the permeability of the material to find the one ideal for your situation.
Are you looking to purchase a geomembrane in the southeast area of the United States? If so, turn to DX2 Geosyntex, Inc. We can help you with all of your geotextile needs, including geomembranes, geotextiles, and erosion control products. Contact us today to obtain more information.