The Role of Internal Inspections in Detecting Water Tank Corrosion

A water tank’s interior is one of its most important parts because it directly affects the safety and cleanliness of the water it holds for daily consumption. Clearly, without proper tank cleaning and inspection, organic and inorganic deposits can collect on surfaces inside water storage tanks, leading to issues with the taste and odor of the water, and can even cause health complications. 

Water storage tank inspections should be conducted every year. The purpose of the inspection is to observe the interior steel and coatings to reduce downtime, maximize water quality, and further prevent water storage tank corrosion if found.

But since not all water tanks are the same, selecting the best type of interior water tank inspection based on your system’s unique needs and when the tank is unusable can be tricky.  This article will shed light on the four available water storage tank inspection options to help you decide which one is suitable for your tank. 

What is Corrosion?

Corrosion is when a refined metal naturally turns to a more stable form, like its oxide, hydroxide, or sulfide state, and this usually leads to the deterioration of the material. Metal corrodes when it reacts with another matter, such as oxygen, hydrogen, an electrical current, or even dirt and bacteria. Corrosion can also happen when metals are placed under too much stress causing the material to crack.

Steel and aluminum are common materials for metal water tanks. Steel and aluminum water tank corrosion will compromise the tank’s integrity and seriously impact daily water consumption.



Role of Internal Inspections

The need for a proper tank inspection cannot be overstated, as many common tank materials are subject to corrosion, cracking, or rusting if left unattended. Over time, sediment can gather and collect along the bottom of tanks. Beyond the tank itself, potable water tank inspections are crucial for good water maintenance and tank corrosion control. 

Failure to do an internal inspection may place a utility in hot water, posing public health dangers. This is why interior inspections must be conducted to ensure water tank corrosion protection.

Types of Tank Inspections

Depending on the tank design and materials, what the tank is used for, external and internal conditions, and the type of tank maintenance provided to keep each unit corrosion-free, some or all of these various inspection options are recommended.

1. Visual Inspections

A visual inspection is a straightforward form of assessment that can be performed on a water storage tank. This inspection is as simple as accessing the water storage tanks’ cover, opening it, and recording what is seen. Pictures of the tank’s roof, walls, and bottom are recommended to document the tank’s structural material and the coating systems’ performance.

2. Remote Operated Vehicle Inspection

A remote-operated vehicle inspection is performed when an unmanned submersible craft is placed inside a water tank while it is full of water. The craft then captures pictures and video of the walls and bottom of the tank to record the tank’s structural material and the coating systems’ performance.

3. Dive Inspection

A dive inspection is when a diver dives into a water storage tank full of water. The diver captures pictures of the tank’s roof, walls, and bottom to document the tank’s structural material and the coating systems’ performance.

4. Washout Inspection

A washout inspection is when a water storage tank is drained, and an individual or crew enters the tank to conduct the review. The individual or team captures pictures of the roof, walls, bottom, and all other structures inside the tank to document the tank’s structural material and the coating systems’ performance.

The crew can then power wash all surfaces of the interior of the tank to remove any sediment and organic materials.

Ready to get Your Water Storage Tanks Inspected?

Corrosion is a recurring problem when you have a metal water tank. You know it will happen, but you do not know when. However, other water tank options, like  GRP Panel Tanks and Stainless Steel Storage Tanks, are available at American Tanks.

We have the best water tank inspection and repair team all over the US, providing quality maintenance services, water tank corrosion protection, tank corrosion control, and water tank inspection. 

We love to be your partner in all your water tank maintenance and repair needs! Call us today to learn more about our other services. 

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