More from: drip diverter

Cohesion and Adhesion: The Chemistry of Drip Diverters

There are some people in this world who like to explore beyond the basic or expected functions of any object. They want to know how and why it works as well. If you belong in that specific group of knowledge seekers, we want to talk to you about drip diverter tarps. Also known more simply as drip diverters, these are small vinyl tarps that are deployed to divert water away from sensitive areas.

We have customers who buy drip diverters to protect hay or equipment stored in a barn with a leaky roof. We have sold them to commercial property owners looking to protect sensitive equipment while maintenance crews are trying to figure out why an air-conditioning unit is leaking. We have even sold them to truck drivers dealing with leaky trailers and sleeper cabs.

In terms of the science behind what makes drip diverters effective for task, it is all about chemistry. In fact, it is all based on two properties that water possesses: cohesion and adhesion. If not for these two properties, a drip diverter tarp would be a useless piece of vinyl suspended from the ceiling.

Water Molecules and Cohesion

In chemistry, the property of cohesion is the ability of identical molecules to attract one another. One water molecule sticks to another water molecule to form a drop because of this property. Indeed, cohesion is what makes a water drop a drop.

Water’s cohesive properties are found in the way the two hydrogen atoms are aligned in relation to the single oxygen atom. Opposite charges keep the molecule together. As an added bonus, those same charges also attract other water molecules. Why does this matter when using drip diverters? Because it is cohesion, combined with gravity, that causes water to run off a drip diverter.

Gravity begins the process before cohesion takes over. It is a lot like a siphon. Once water molecules start flowing out of the drip diverter and down its tubing, each water molecule flowing in a downward motion pulls other molecules along with it. This is what prevents water from pooling inside the diverter.

Water Molecules and Adhesion

In chemistry, the property of adhesion is the ability of different molecules to attract one another. Have you ever seen a drop of water stuck to the edge of a pine needle? That happens because the surface of the water is attracted to the surface of the pine needle due to the alignment of electrical charges. That is adhesion. The two surfaces attract one another.

Adhesion plays a role in drip diverters inasmuch as water does not adhere to vinyl tarp material as well as it does to other surfaces. In fact, water tends to bead up and run off as long as there is an outlet. That’s because the cohesive bond between water molecules is stronger than the adhesive bond between water and vinyl.

This is not to say that water does not adhere to vinyl surfaces. It can and does. It’s just that it is not so easy. Compare vinyl to other fabrics – like cotton. Water will run off vinyl a lot more readily than it will cotton. In fact, the adhesion between water and cotton is such that a cotton cloth will absorb more water than it repels.

Now you know how cohesion and adhesion work together to make drip diverter tarps useful. Isn’t science fascinating? Perhaps you don’t care, and that’s okay. The most important take away here is that Mytee Products carries drip diverters. If you need to temporarily divert water away from something until permanent repairs can be affected, a drip diverter is one option.


Drip Diverters: A Smart Solution to a Big Problem

A drip diverter is a purpose-built device intended to capture leaking water and divert it away from sensitive areas. Drip diverters come in many different forms, including the tarps we sell here at Mytee Products. Our drip diverter tarps are ideal for truck drivers, farmers, RV owners, and others.

The most important thing to know about the drip diverter is that it is offered only as a temporary solution to a potentially big problem. Relying on diversion for too long, rather than addressing the root of the problem, only leads to bigger problems down the road.

Drip Diverters on the Farm

We sell a lot of drip diverters to farmers. It turns out that these highly utilitarian products have plenty of great uses ranging from keeping tractor seats dry to making sure feeding areas are not deluged by summer rains. We have even worked with farmers who want drip diverters to protect their hay.

Imagine a barn filled with hay for the winter. Much to the farmer’s delight, the hay stays dry – unless the roof suddenly springs a leak. The last thing that farmer wants to do is climb on top of the barn in the middle of winter to affect repairs. Enter the drip diverting tarp.

The diverter can be hung from the ceiling directly underneath the leak. Then it can be angled in such a way as to divert the water away from the hay. This is not a solution we would recommend long-term, but it will get the farmer through until nicer spring weather allows for roof repairs.

Truck Drivers and Drip Diverters

If you think truck drivers do not have any use for drip diverting tarps, think again. Truck drivers are known for doing all sorts of ingenious things with limited resources. There is a lot they can do with a drip diverter.

For example, you might have a truck driver who likes to sit outside his rig at the end of a long day. A drip diverter makes a perfect canopy so that he’s not stuck inside the cab if it’s raining. That same drip diverter can be used as a temporary solution if the sleeper cab springs a leak in the middle of a trip. It will do the trick until the driver can get his rig in for repair.

We have seen truck drivers use their drip diverters as impromptu sun blockers as well. In the right position, a folded drip diverter can block portions of the side window, thus keeping the sun at bay without affecting the driver’s ability to view side mirrors.

The All-Purpose Tarp

Most of the customers we sell drip diverters to are farmers and truck drivers. But really, this is an all-purpose tarp that has plenty of uses beyond what has been described here. RV owners use drip diverters to keep rain off their picnic tables and grills. They use them to cover their gas tanks during travel.

At home, drip converters can be used in the garage the same way a farmer would use one in the barn. In short, drip diverters are a temporary solution to a big problem. By catching water and the diverting it away from sensitive areas, a drip-diverting tarp can save you a ton of money and a lot of hard work by preventing a minor leak from becoming a major disaster.

We invite you to check out our inventory of drip diverters. We offer three sizes: 10′ x 10′, 7′ x 7′, and 5′ x 5′. Each one is constructed with vinyl-coated material and heavy-duty grommets in the corners.