This is a classic question where many of our customers have seen a geogrid and don’t want a geotextile or vise-versa or that they have been recommended a product from a manufacturer of that type product (basically because they don’t make the other type). this guide seeks to provide an unbiased view of the advantages of both so that you can be guided make a decision yourself or at least understand the benefits of one product over against another.-
Advantages of Geogrids:
- Strength and Stabilization: Geogrids offer high tensile strength in both longitudinal and transverse directions, making them suitable for reinforcement and stabilization of soils and aggregates. They effectively distribute loads, reducing soil movement and enhancing structural integrity. Geogrids are particularly beneficial in applications like retaining walls and embankments.
- Soil Interaction: Geogrids have an open grid-like structure that allows for soil and stone interlocking and confinement. This mechanical engagement restricts soil and stone movement, improving load transfer and enhancing shear resistance and overall stability. Geogrids are advantageous in applications where soil confinement and reinforcement are critical.
- Durability: Geogrids are made from high-strength polymers or composites, making them resistant to chemical and biological degradation, as well as environmental factors like UV radiation and temperature variations. Their durability ensures long-term performance and integrity.
- Construction Flexibility: Geogrids offer versatility in construction applications. They can be easily incorporated into various project designs, such as mechanically stabilized earth walls, reinforced slopes, and pavement systems. Geogrids can be installed horizontally, vertically, or at different angles, allowing engineers and contractors to optimize their use for specific project requirements.
Advantages of Geotextiles:
- Filtration and Drainage: Geotextiles excel in filtration and drainage applications. They allow water to pass through while retaining soil particles. Geotextiles prevent the clogging of drainage systems and are effective in erosion control, subsurface drainage, and filtration behind retaining walls.
- Separation: Geotextiles provide excellent separation between different soil layers, preventing the mixing and migration of particles. This separation function is crucial in applications like road construction, where geotextiles prevent the subgrade soil from mixing with the overlying aggregate base.
- Protection: Geotextiles offer protection against mechanical damage, erosion, and abrasion. They can be used to safeguard vulnerable materials like geomembranes and liners from punctures, UV degradation, and physical wear and tear.
- Versatility and Cost: Geotextiles come in various materials, thicknesses, and strengths, providing versatility in their applications. They are available in woven, non-woven, and knitted forms, each suitable for different needs. Geotextiles are generally more cost-effective than geogrids, making them a preferred choice in many projects.
In specific scenarios, both geotextiles and geogrids can be used together to achieve desired outcomes. Technical designs from geotechnical engineers or specialist suppliers are typically utilized in such cases, considering factors like heavy vehicular traffic, peat areas, and specific project requirements. It is important to note that individual preference, availability, and the unique nature of each project should be taken into account when selecting the appropriate geosynthetic material.
Both products perform well in situations for standard applications and often comes down to individual preference and availability.
This outline is provided from thousands of applications over nearly 50 years experience and is a guide rather than a specific detailed overview and views and opinions should be used alongside your technical teams as no 2 projects are the same.