PVC Layflat hoses are an important invention of the last century, which has affected many industries, but none more than agriculture. It has made it possible to supply water in remote areas, or in difficult landscapes without the complications and costs of an underground piping system. It is user-friendly, easy to install and store, cost-efficient to transport, needs very few spare parts to assembly and can cover huge territories with ease and flexibility.
Layflats are far from being limited in application possibilities to irrigating crops. They are widely used for sprinklers and high-pressure sprayers (for pesticides and others).
Also, jumping past its most common field of use, Layflat hoses also have Industrial applications. A very popular one is in construction engineering, where these hoses are a very good fit due to their flexible properties. On construction sites it is hard to deliver water, because most places are hard to access. But not for the Flat hose, because of its extra flexibility and compact nature.
We should not forget to mention more specific fields of application for the Layflat as Oil and Gas extraction and the Mining industry.
After summarizing the numerous opportunities for usage of Layflat hoses it is not a surprise that since its invention in the beginning of the last century it has become a complete hit and there has been a lot of investment in R&D to make the product more diverse.
In the beginning the structure of the hose was only the so-called Double Layer, meaning that you have an inner layer, then a yarn reinforcement and finally an outer layer cover. These hoses are usually heavier and more resistant to pressure and weather conditions.
Nevertheless, the focus on the agriculture market demanded a more cost-efficient solution and that is how the Single Layer Layflat was born. It differs in its structure, because it consists of just one layer of PVC, in which the yarn reinforcement is sort of injected. This product is mostly limited to use in irrigation.
Other experiments include not only the structure, but the materials for the hose. For the walls, instead of PVC we can find PU or PE or Rubber, for the yarn: it can be Polyester, Cotton, or Metal.
Nevertheless, let’s for now focus on the comparison between the PVC Double or Single Layer hose. How to chose and what to have in mind when making the decision.
We talked a lot about applications, but just as any hose really, the Layflat can in many cases be best identified as Multipurpose, meaning it depends on the end consumer for what they will chose to use the hose.
That being said, it is incorrect to talk about a “better hose” when comparing Single and Double Layer Layflats. It is more appropriate to say “better suited for my needs”. That is why it is essential to know what you will actually use the Layflat for in preparing to making the right choice between the two options.
The first point to have in mind is the cost/price, where due to its lighter weight the Single Layer has an advantage.
And second - the pressure. The Sigle Layer Layflat is almost exclusively used for irrigation, whereas the Double Layer is the preferred option for more pressure demanding applications like Pumps, Sprinklers, Construction, Dewatering and Mining.
Of course, apart from the obvious price or application, there are also some General points of Consideration, which it is good to have in mind when analyzing the differences between Single and Double Layer Layflat hoses.
For example, a great number of the Single Layer Layflats on the market come for Non-European countries and very often do not meet the EU Quality and Safety requirements. This also makes the price gap between the two products much easier to understand and defend.
Also, Single Layer hoses are more sensitive to scratches and weather conditions, which can easily lead to holes or bursts on the surface. In comparison, a Double Layer hose, is much more resistant to pressure,harsh terrains and conditions with one exception. In case of breaking the surface of the hose by piercing a hole in it for irrigation a Double Layer hose hides the danger of creating an air bubble between the two layers and causing a burst. This is not the case with Single Layer hoses. Nevertheless, this effect can be avoided if a rule of thumb is followed – when piercing a Double Layflat hose one should cut the allowed pressure going through the hose in two (if it was 4bars, no more than 2bars, should go through the hose).
In 2016, when we in Plexistab were posed with the decision to choose between producing Single or Double Layer Layflats we did not hesitate to create the brand BULFLAT, which is a Double Layer PVC LayFlay Hose.
We have multiple series, depending on the different pressures – 4bar, 5bar, 8bar, 10bar, 16bar.
The reason behind the decision is that we always bet on the best know-how, which in this case came to us from Plexaco, Greece – a pioneer in the production of Layflats and well established and tested on the market. Also, our company identity lines best with a product which is more quality oriented and with specific instead of mass consumption.
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