Rubber Linings: Storage Tips
Blair Rubber Co.’s quality rubber linings can provide up to 20 years of service when properly installed and maintained. Improper storage of rubber linings can lead to degradation and shortened lifespans.
Learn what elements can affect your rubber lining and get tips for proper storage:
Weather can severely alter the durability of your rubber lining. Exposure to sun, extreme heat and cold, ozone and thermal stress can all cause damage.
Most rubber linings need protection from sunlight. In fact, rubber linings should never be exposed to direct sunlight or direct outdoor weathering for more than a few days. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. Chlorobutyl, Hypalon and Neoprene linings are inherently ozone and UV resistant and therefore can withstand sun exposure for extended periods of time without harm. If other rubber types are in use, especially natural rubber, Blair Rubber Co. recommends that these linings be periodically painted with Agetech.
In the summer months, it is imperative to protect your rubber lining from sun exposure and extreme heat.
When possible, store rubber tank linings in shaded areas to avoid hot afternoon sun. Painting the outside of the tanks with aluminum or white paint will also lower the internal temperature. Cover with a tarpaulin to limit sun exposure. Keep a closed tank ventilated for best results.
During the colder months, keep your tanks partially filled to avert freezing. Blair Rubber Co. suggests either a 5% sulfuric acid solution, 5% sodium carbonate solution or a weak salt solution for storage in equipment that can be sealed. Contact Blair Rubber Co.’s technical department for anti-freeze solution compatibility.
It is best to avoid sudden temperature changes across all seasons, but especially winter. Handle equipment carefully and protect it from external forces, such as sudden blows, flexing, twisting, etc.
Idle Equipment Storage
When equipment is not in use, some level of maintenance is important to prolong the effectiveness of your rubber lining. Idle tanks require protection from excessive drying and temperature changes. Partially fill standby equipment with a diluted solution of the chemical it’s designed to contain. Blair Rubber recommends consulting with the tank lining supplier for the ideal mixture, yet a 1%-3% chemical concentration is usually sufficient.
Keeping tanks moderately filled will help the lining maintain flexibility and minimize any expansion and contraction issues. Also, it will decrease the possibility of thermal shock when the equipment is put back in service.
Job Site Protection
Your job site could present several hazardous issues to your rubber-lined equipment, both inside and outside of structure:
- Ozone from welding.
- Ozone from portable generators, power relay stations and electric motors.
- Fumes from generators such as nitrous oxide.
- Arcing from electrical equipment and hook-ups.
- Oils and liquids of many types.
Suggested preventative measures include:
- Rubber installation should be as near to the end of the construction phase as possible.
- Openings to rubber lined equipment should be closed as much as possible to prevent attack from hazards such as those noted above.
- The ends of rubber lined pipe should be blanked off and kept that way until ready for use.
- All portable rubber covered items should be covered for protection.
Additional protective measures are available from RMA, ASTM and other Blair Rubber Co. publications.
Looking for more advice on maintaining or repairing a rubber lining? Contact us today or call us at 800-321-5583.