Comparison of properties of different types of storage tanks
Link to this table

Tank material Advantages Disadvantages
Plastic
Fiberglass
  • Commercially available
  • Alterable and movable (modular)
  • No leak fittings
  • Durable
  • Minimal maintenance needed
  • Light weight
  • If aboveground, must be sited on smooth, solid, level footing
  • Expensive in smaller sizes
Polyethylene, polypropylene
  • Commercially available
  • Alterable and movable
  • Affordable
  • Available in a variety of sizes
  • Easy to install
  • Little maintenance
  • Can be degraded by UV
  • If aboveground (outdoors), painted or tinted
  • Can be insultated and heat traced.
Barrels and trash cans
  • Commercially available
  • Inexpensive
  • Must use new cans
  • Small storage capacity
  • Rarely installed correctly
  • May lead to foundation water issues
Metal
Galvanized steel tanks
  • Commercially available
  • Alterable and movable
  • Available in variety of sizes
  • Possible corrosion and rust
  • Must be lined for potable use
  • Only above-ground use
  • Must be insulated and heat traced
Steel drums (55-gallon)
  • Commercially available
  • Alterable and movable
  • Verify prior to use for toxics
  • Corrosion and rust can leach metals
  • Small storage capacity
Concrete and masonry
Ferroconcrete
  • Durable
  • Versatile
  • Suitable for above- or below-ground installations
  • Can be incorporated into the foundation of a building.
  • Potential to crack and leak
  • Permanent
Monolithic/poured-in-place
  • Durable
  • Suitable for above- or below-ground installations
  • Neutralizes acid rain
  • Can be incorporated into the foundation of a building.
  • Potential to crack and leak
  • Permanent
  • Need drainage in clay soil
Stone, concrete block
  • Durable
  • Keeps water cool in hot weather
  • Difficult to maintain and sanitize
  • Permanent
  • Expensive to build
  • Could harbor biofilms
Wood
Pine, redwood, cedar, cypress
  • Attractive
  • Durable
  • Can be disassembled
  • Available in variety of sizes
  • Expensive
  • Require skilled technician to build
  • Not for use in hot, dry conditions
  • Can be leaky
  • Only above-ground use
  • Not as easily sanitized

This page was last modified on 4 October 2016, at 13:56.

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