Anti-fouling paint challenge: Tiles appear promising

17 March 2022

A post by Jack Crassweller

Science and Trade Effluent Manager


We launched this particular challenge to explore the possibility of coating some of the chambers and channels at our water recycling centres with an anti-fouling paint – the idea was that this could reduce the build-up of dirt and debris and further improve our compliance record.

We posted a while back to let you know that we had compiled a shortlist of products to investigate with the hope of moving to trials during the season of spring when regrowth is at a maximum.

Upon investigating the products further we met some challenges. For example, in one possible trial product, the dry time for the primer was too long to be practical.

Following further discussion we have decided not to pursue any of the options that were identified. There are two key reasons:

  • the paints identified don’t last long enough to justify the cost and logistics of taking the tanks offline for application
  • and/or they include certain chemicals that mean they wouldn’t be appropriate for us to use at water recycling centres.

While it’s disappointing not to have identified a solution in the way we had originally envisaged, the Marketplace enquiry has highlighted that tiles seem to be the most promising solution for us. We already have sites that utilise tiles and so we have a good idea of their performance.

Tiles are likely to be a more costly solution than the paint type solution we originally set out to explore. So how widely they are taken forward will depend on resource – for example, tiles could be considered for new assets, but would need to be taken on a case-by-case basis in terms of cost.