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Old 21-08-2003, 12:32 AM
Gregory Young
Posts: n/a
Default Pond Guard vs roofing liner - Firestone's answer!

Hi all:
To settle the discussion (I can't locate the original thread) as to whether
or not there are differences between roofing liner (Firestone Rubbergard
line), and pond liner (Firestone PondGard), I called Firestone today in my
"official capacity" with the state to get the straight answer.
I talked first to TH, who could not answer my "detailed" questions, who
referred me to BJ, one of their engineers.
Firestone called me back, to confirm I was who I stated I was, before they
would go into specifics. I was told the specifics, but can share only
generalities with you in this forum. You make your own decisions..
The bottom line, according to Firestone, there is a "decided difference"
between the 2 liners:
1) I questioned why the MSD sheets (Material Safety Data sheets) another NG
reader had shared with us comparing the 2 products seemed so similar.
Their answer: Manufacturers are required only to list potential hazards of
their products along with the general type of material, physical, chemical,
etc properties, etc.
They are not required to list individual components as long as any potential
properties of them are included in the above for their product. Their
processes and product lines are patent protected.
The MSD sheets may look similar, according to Firestone, but they are not.
In fact he said to be sure to notice that under the product identification
section, the chemical name descriptor, PondGard is listed as "cured rubber
material", with no similar reference in their roofing line MSD sheet. Why?
... read on.
2) Their roofing liner has "additional processing", which "adds certain
chemicals useful to extend the life of the material". He would not identify
the specific agents added, except to agree with me that "some" companies add
plant inhibiting compounds to their roofing liner.
3) More importantly, the 2 are "cured differently". PondGard meets rigid
specs. for potable water to "insure Koifish kept in peoples' ponds are not
affected". In fact this liner could be used to hold potable water based on
its curing process, although he was very clear that Firestone does NOT
warrant this liner for that purpose! Their roofing liner (made at the same
plant, and using the same overall equipment) is NOT cured in this fashion.
There are no provisions in the processing of the roofing liner to inhibit
chemicals from leaching out of the material, although he projected this
would take at least 3 or 4 years to become an issue.
4) There is nothing to "wash off" of their products, for either use. As the
chemicals are incorporated into the material, "they can not be washed out."
5) The difference in the price they charge to dealers is based on the curing
process of the PondGard, which ensures "there will be no leaching of
chemicals, until its warranted lifespan has been exceeded". He stated they
do NOT spend the $$ on this curing process, and label some material coming
off their line as PondGard, and other as Rubbergard. It would be a waste of
Dealers clearly have a healthy mark-up on PondGard, from what was shared.
6) The bottom line, I asked if it were him, and this was to be used in a
potable situation (for fish again, not for drinking water for people), what
would he do. He stated he would "certainly pay more and get the right
Now you have the facts direct from Firestone, who make PondGard. That is one
product from one company, so you can not automatically generalize the above
statements to other companies.
Happy ponding,