What Are the Best Grates for Your Needs?
When it comes to grates for drainage (as well as flooring surfaces), there are a range of materials available, all of which tout their advantages, strongest, most durable, cheapest and so forth.
In this article we will demystify the market, give you some background on the range of options available, when and where they are applicable, and why we legitimately believe that, in the majority of cases, stainless steel grates eclipse all others. particularly where visual impact is valued.
Grate Range of Options Available: When and Where They are Applicable
There are a number of options when it comes to grates, some greater than others, here is just sample of some of the products on the market, a little bit about them and where they are frequently used.
Galvanised Steel Grates:
Galvanisation is a plating over mild steel. They are generally used for outdoor applications such as driveways and pathways
Aside from not being the prettiest of grates, one of the down sides of this material is that over time the galvanise (that which protects it from rust) wears off… you keep walking on it, and sooner or later you wear that layer off and get degradation into the mild steel underneath.
Cast Iron Grates:
Cast iron is purposed for people walking on, not really for trafficable uses because cast iron, being brittle, will snap.
FRP, which is fibreglass, mainly has its place in industry. It is frequently used for the type of walkways that don’t require heelguard grates (you could have an FRP heelguard grate, but it would be very bulky and just not appealing. It is not designed so much for public access), such as on oil platform, in maintenance sheds, or where you’ve got to connect levels or floors.
FRP has good bones, but it’s not designed for water throughput as well as other styles of grating, simply because it requires a mass of material to give it strength. This greater mass of material basically encroaches on the open area or throughput of the grate – it’s essentially interrupting water-flow with its own material.
FRP is chemical resistant. It’s used in some bunding applications, for example, where its industrial, it doesn’t really doesn’t have to be iconic, like stainless steel.
As for the UV properties, we cannot speak with any great assurance on this, but to say that degradation overtime would be likely in very hot and sunny conditions.
Aluminium is lightweight, but it is also soft and bends. While often marketed for aesthetic appeal (not a view we share), aluminium also dulls.
Stainless Steel Grates:
In our unbiased opinion 🙂 stainless steel grates eclipse each of the aforementioned materials, With strength, durability, corrosion resistance, just to begin with, AND the aesthetic appeal, it could be said stainless steel grates have the broadest appeal of them all. From bathrooms, to architectural and civil applications, stainless steel grates are the greatest, and definitely the coolest, all-rounder
Why are Stainless Steel Grates the Best?
When it comes to grates, stainless steel are the relative “new kid on the block”. Having only been booming in the last 10 or so years, there is still education to be done – like any new product, people are reserved until its well and truly entrenched in the market.
Here’s Why YOU Should Switch to Stainless
Ultimately, they’re aesthetically pleasing and functional, but also…
- Stainless steel grates, particularly wedgewire or heelguard, give a clean surface. If you look at the mechanics of stainless steel and the way our grates are manufactured, the debris on the surface would go through the grate and not clog it as much as another style of grate. The reason for this is all other grates are parallel in their slots (gaps). In a wedgewire grate there is a relief angle under each wire, under each broad surface, it bevels away, The theory behind this is that near on size particles won’t peg in the stainless steel grate, they’ll go through, since there is no resistance past that point of contact,
- The applications for stainless steel grates are wide and varied, it covers off on most all the applications combined of other grate varieties, while looking good in the process. For example, both galvanised and stainless steel grates can be used for chemical applications, but only one these looks cool!
- They’re environmentally stable, as far as manufacturing goes.
Price Vs. Value
For some, the price of stainless steel grates can be prohibitive. As a raw material, stainless steel exceeds the price of mild steel six fold. However, unlike other varieties of grate, our stainless steel grates are a one-time buy! In fact, theoretically, stainless steel should last forever, unless of course somebody does something detrimental.
Furthermore, maintenance on our stainless steel grates is near zero, This is NOT common to all types of grating, so much so that we find maintenance is the number one reason that people convert from other grate materials to stainless steel.
Certainly, where aesthetics are important, stainless steel trumps all others, and for this cause are the grates of choice in upmarket projects, where price isn’t really a concern.
When are Stainless Steel Grates not Suitable?
We want our customers to get the best out of our products, and to this end, it behooves us to inform you of the places where stainless steel grates would not be appropriate.
To date, we have yet to come across any application that stainless steel does not lend itself to, with one exception, indoor heated pools, The chemical and heat of indoor pools, such as those used for hydrotherapy, create a chemical reaction with stainless steel resulting in a discolouration of the material. This does nothing to effect the performance of the product, it is merely visual. Furthermore, it is not endemic only to grates in this environment, but beware, to anything stainless, for example door fittings, pool gates, and handles. These things considered, plastic grates are the best choice for indoor heated pools.
Got an outdoor pool and looking for attractive grates… no worries, stainless steel grates are absolutely fine in this environment with the correct handling! Check out our page on pool grates.