Which Erosion Control Blanket Is Right For Your Job?
Erosion control blankets can be the solution for your slope stabilization and soil erosion problems. Read more about the different kinds of blankets available to see which one is right for you.
Why Is Erosion a Concern in the Construction Industry?
Erosion is the process by which topsoil is worn away and transported by natural forces like wind or water. Soil erosion is a natural process, but industrial activity can influence it. Construction projects that alter the characteristics of the landscape and remove vegetation can increase the impacts of erosion. When left untreated, it can cause long-term damage to the local environment. Installing solutions like erosion control blankets early in the construction process can prevent erosive damage before it happens, saving you time and money later.
What Are Erosion Control Blankets?
Erosion control blankets are protective layers of natural or synthetic fibers placed on the ground to shield the exposed topsoil from water flow and wind. The blankets are often installed on steep slopes or above ditches in construction sites. They’re beginning to experience an increase in popularity in a variety of industries; a new research report projects the erosion control blanket market to become a $100 million industry by 2024.
How Are Erosion Control Blankets Manufactured?
Erosion control blankets are made using a combination of straw, coconut, or excelsior products that are tightly woven together with mesh netting to create a thick mat. All blankets have a high porosity to promote moisture retention and to allow for proper airflow. They’re delivered rolled up like carpets and then unrolled over their desired location. They keep the topsoil from shifting when properly placed, which prevents erosion.
How Long Do Erosion Control Blankets Last?
Most erosion control blankets are designed to decompose into the soil naturally. This decomposition supplies the topsoil with additional nutrients and prevents you from having to remove them. The durability of the blanket depends primarily on the materials used in manufacturing. Temporary erosion control blankets are divided into four different strength categories:
Ultra short-term blankets offer the quickest decomposition time. Often referred to as accelerated blankets, they typically break down one month after installation and rarely last for more than three months.
Short-term blankets are manufactured in single and double net varieties. They’re the ideal choice when looking for a solution that will last between six and twelve months.
Extended-term blankets are made of slowly degrading fibers that increase their longevity. You can expect extended-term blankets to maintain their strength for two years.
Long-term blankets offer the best UV stability, which allows them to be used for up to three years.
Don’t put yourself at risk for hefty EPA fines. Contact Varsity today, and one of our professionals will show you why we’re a leading landscaping company.
Erosion control blankets are becoming a more accepted hillside erosion control product because of the variety of benefits they offer. Some of these include:
Erosion control blankets are a cost-effective solution. They offer strong soil protection at a lower price than alternative erosion solutions.
Not only do most blankets decompose back into the soil, but they’re also harmless to local wildlife.
Easy to Use
The blankets are user-friendly, and can be installed the moment they arrive at your job site.
Types of Erosion Control Blankets
The kind of blanket used on a project will depend on the worksite and the condition of the landscape. Here are some of the more common erosion control blankets available on the market today:
Photodegradable Erosion Control Blankets
Photodegradable blankets are typically made from plastics that contain UV stabilizers, which quit functioning and break down after a determined amount of time. Photodegradable blankets qualify as short-term blankets and will last about one year before decomposing.
Biodegradable Erosion Control Blankets
Biodegradable blankets are composed of natural fibers instead of plastics. These blankets are an ideal choice for projects where minimum environmental disruption is a priority. Biodegradable blankets vary widely in durability, and can last anywhere from a few months to a few years based on the composition materials.
Permanent Erosion Control Blankets
Permanent erosion control blankets provide the longest-term durability. Unlike photodegradable or biodegradable blankets, permanent blankets are designed to not disintegrate into the soil. There are two common varieties of permanent erosion control blankets:
Turf Reinforcement Mats
Turf reinforcement mats (TRMs) contain a combination of synthetic fibers, nets, and mesh that are bound to form a durable blanket. TRMs also contain degradable straw and coconut fibers to provide immediate soil protection and encourage new landscape growth. Construction companies use TRMs for erosion and sediment control in channels, ditches, steep slopes, and areas around streams and shorelines. TRMs protect the landscape, promote plant life, and provide soil stabilization.
High-Performance Turf Reinforcement Mats
High-performance turf reinforcement mats (HPTRMs) are great for heavy-duty construction jobs. They’re built with higher tensile strength and provide improved stabilization that protects topsoil. HPTRMs can handle intense protection jobs where there is little vegetation or where gravity increases the effects of water runoff. Areas where HPTRMs excel include steep slopes, high-water channels, coasts, and stormwater systems.
Why You Should Consider Varsity for Your Erosion Control Blanket Needs
When your new construction project requires erosion control solutions, partnering with a company you can trust is critical. Varsity offers durable and customizable erosion control blankets that are easy to install and effective for protecting your site from erosion. Contact us today and see how we can solve your slope stabilization and erosion control problems for your construction site.
Varsity Inc. has been providing a full range of landscape related services to the Northeast commercial and industrial markets since 1974.