The demand for tank trailers is growing. Spherical Insights & Consulting reported in April 2023 that global trailer market size is forecasted to grow by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.01 percent from now though 2030. This anticipated increase is going to require tank trailers, many with product specific modifications, in order to meet the expected growth in industries such as chemicals, agriculture and food and beverage markets.
Why Modify Tank Trailers?
Rising demand creates opportunities in the tank trailer industry, and this expected demand may be even higher for tank trailers with modifications such as those listed below. The benefits of these modifications include improving safety, preventing contamination of tank contents, extending tank life, and providing cost effective transport for a broad range of liquid bulk products. Tank trailers are vital to many industries, including the petroleum, chemical, food and beverage, and agricultural industries. Tank linings preserve tank integrity, prevent cargo contamination and facilitate cleaning and sanitation. For the transportation of products classified as hazardous, flammable or volatile, tank trailer modifications such as vapor recovery are necessary for safe transport of these products and to comply with air quality regulations.
Common Tank Trailer Modifications:
- Vapor Recovery: Prevent VOCs from being released into the atmosphere during transport for safety and in order to minimize environmental impacts.
- Linings: Protect tanks from chemical absorption and damage while also maintaining product integrity.
- Baffles: Prevents the sudden extreme movement of liquid cargo by inserting dividers within the tank.
- Customized Safety Railings, Ladders, and Walkways: Provides a safer means to access the tank body for repairs, routine maintenance, and during preparation for loading / unloading operations.
- Dip Tubes & Liquid Level Gauges: Allows the operator to read the level of fluid or gas in the trailer tank, and enables the withdrawal of liquid products for sampling.
- Pumps and Venting for Yard / Venting: Allows the tank trailer to “breathe” during filling/discharging.
The Importance of Tank Liners
All of these modifications are important. So important in fact, that many have become routine. However, tank liners are a more complex modification due to their being product and tank material specific. The application of tank liners also requires special equipment. The proper selection and application of liners is important to provide adequate protection of the barrel of the tanker trailer. Nearly all DOT 412s have liners, and they are also commonly used in DOT 407s, which are used for chemical transportation and environmental services. Tank liners minimize corrosion, pitting, and offer product protection. Without tank liners, or if the wrong liner is used for the product or barrel material, or if it is misapplied, the barrel may get corroded or destroyed, resulting in a liability issue and the possibility of product contamination.
Primary Types of Tank Liners for 407s and 412s:
- Rubber (DOT412s)
- Fiberglass reinforced products,
- MDPE or medium density polyethylene resin
- ChemLINE® 784
- ChemLINE® 2400
- Plasite® 3070
DOT407 Tank Trailer Modification Case Study
A Fortune 500 listed chemical manufacturing company and current Matlack customer recently reached out to Matlack Leasing with a request for a tank trailer modification. Specifically, the customer wanted to add two (2) lined 407 tank trailers to their fleet in a relatively short time period. The customer’s internal engineering group specified that a ChemLINE 784(R) liner would be required.*
Matlack’s Operations Team identified available low-mileage existing fleet trailers suitable for lining. The Matlack Team worked with the vendor to confirm product availability, lead time and the cost of materials and labor required to add the ChemLINE 784(R) lining to the two (2) DOT407s. Matlack provided these details and a quote to the customer for a two (2) year term, enabling the customer to spread project costs out over the duration of the lease.
The customer agreed to maintain the tank trailer, including the tank liner, while it is on lease. This includes an annual inspection per FAA requirements. The customer also agreed to remove the liner at off-hire. The lease was signed and the equipment modifications are being implemented.
Matlack adds value by providing a team with tank trailer and transportation industry expertise, vendor relationships, and flexible lease terms which allow the costs associated with tank trailer modifications to be spread out over the lifetime of the lease.
* NOTE: Matlack’s Operations Team, with nearly two decades of direct experience with lining tank trailers, will assist with procuring the correct tank liner for your product even if you don’t have an engineering team available.
Contact Matlack Leasing for More Information on Leasing Tank Trailers with Modifications
Let Matlack Leasing’s team of experienced tank trailer operations professionals work with your team to quickly and accurately provide the tank trailer modifications required to transport (or store) your next product. As one of North America’s leading tank trailer lessors, our tank trailers may be modified to your specifications and product requirements including tank linings from an industry leading polymer coatings company. Contact us today to see which tank trailer modification is right for you.