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PVC Tarpaulin

Industry Uses, Properties, and Common Questions

PVC tarpaulin is a high-strength fabric covered on both sides with a thin coating of PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride), which makes the material highly waterproof and durable. It is typically made from woven polyester-based fabric, but it can also be made from nylon or linen.

PVC tarps are tremendously versatile, being suitable for a plethora of uses. Due to being strong, lightweight, and cost-effective, PVC tarpaulin is gaining popularity in manufacturing across multiple industries.

So, let’s dive. Read on to uncover the many ways PVC tarpaulin is a game-changer across various sectors, from construction to agriculture.

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What is PVC tarpaulin?

PVC tarpaulin is a heavy-duty, plastic-like PVC-coated fabric. It is typically woven from polyester or nylon threads and dipped in PVC coating to increase its water resistance and robustness.

PVC tarpaulin is strong and tear-resistant yet highly flexible and easily molded into various different shapes and forms. This method of PVC coating allows for the material to remain lightweight and flexible while also being hardwearing. The weatherproof qualities of the fabric make it particularly adequate for outdoor use and protective coverings.

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What is PVC tarpaulin used for?

PVC tarp has multiple applications across various industries, including construction, agriculture, transportation, camping, and more. 

One of its main uses is for protecting goods, equipment, and materials from rain, sunlight, and outdoor weather elements. This may include covers for vehicles, machinery, construction materials, outdoor furniture, crops, hay, and farm equipment, and pool covers. 

PVC tarps are also commonly used to create curtains for trucks and trailers, tents and temporary shelters for camping, disaster relief, outdoor events, and exhibitions.

Welding curtains, safety barriers on construction sites, outdoor banners and signage, sports equipment, such as gym mats, protective padding, and inflatables may also use PVC tarpaulin.

What are the properties of PVC tarpaulin?

PVC tarpaulin has many different qualities that make it well-suited for certain industrial applications.

Durability and resistance

PVC tarps are highly durable even in extreme weather conditions. They are resistant to abrasion, tearing, and punctures.


One of the most characteristic qualities of PVC tarpaulin is its resistance to water. The PVC coating makes the fabric impermeable and well-suited to protecting from rain and moisture.

UV resistance

Being resistant to ultraviolet (UV) rays, PV tarpaulin does not easily fade or degrade in outdoor exposure.

Flexibility and moldability

This foldable and malleable fabric allows PVC tarpaulin to be used for multiple different applications. It can easily adapt to different forms as well as be folded down small for transportation and storage.

Fire retardant

Most PVC tarps are inherently resistant to flames due to their weave and chemical composition.


PVC tarpaulin is an affordable industry option compared to similar materials with the same qualities. Polyester tarps are particularly cost-effective.

Easy to weld

Using heat to weld PVC tarps is an effective method to join the fabric and create more elaborate covers and structures while maintaining water resistance.

Various colours and sizes

PVC tarpaulin comes in a variety of colours and sizes meaning manufacturers can easily customise it and employ it for many applications.

Easy to maintain

As PVC tarp is so resistant to weather and other elements, it needs minimal maintenance as well as being easy-wipe and easy to clean.

PVC tarpaulin industry uses

This versatile and long-lasting fabric is functional across many industries and applications.

Agricultural industry

PVC tarpaulin is commonly used in agriculture and farming to protect crops, machinery, and materials from weather conditions and pests.

Camping and outdoor sector

The camping sector uses many types of PVC tarpaulin for tents, tarps, and groundsheets as it is waterproof and hardwearing. Try linen-based tarp for heavy-duty embossing, PVC leather-design film for camping flooring, or blackout tarpaulin for lightweight opaque roofing

Sports industry

Gym equipment, machinery covers, and padding can all use PVC tarpaulin.

Events and hospitality

Large event structures can be built from PVC tarps, particularly for events across the hospitality and entertainment industries. Blackout fabrics are perfect for blinds in hotel rooms, and flame-retardant options are also popular for curtains.

Marine industry

Resistant PVC tarpaulins are also highly functional in the marine sector to protect boats, sails, and equipment from salt, abrasion,and weather conditions. Lightweight tarpaulin is popular in marine applications.

Transportation industry

Logistics and transportation manufacturers may reach for PVC tarps for truck and trailer curtains or covers to protect goods in transit. High-resistance PVC tarps also make effective automotive covers. Flame retardant polyester tarp is also useful in wheelchair manufacture.

Construction industry

PVC tarpaulins make perfect covers and temporary shelters to shield machinery and materials on construction sites.

Advertising industry

Outdoor banners, billboards and signage often use PVC tarpaulin due to its weather resistance and durability. PVC tarpaulin with one side dull is well-suited to packaging.

Frequently asked questions

PVC tarpaulin is typically made from a base fabric like nylon or polyester and then is coated in PVC coating on both sides to make it waterproof and more hardwearing. PVC vinyl, or PVC film, is made entirely from PVC and is more flexible and aesthetically appealing. PVC tarps are more suited to outdoor use, while PVC vinyl is typically used indoors for things like upholstery.

Due to being coated in a PVC layer on both sides, PVC tarpaulin is highly water resistant. Being waterproof, PVC tarps are excellent for outdoor use.

PVC tarps are highly durable and can last anywhere from 3 to 15 years. How quickly it will degrade and fade can depend on the quality, base material, and conditions it is exposed to.

PVC tarpaulin is typically one of the best materials for outdoor use. PVC tarps have a coating of PVC on either side which makes them highly waterproof, weather resistant, and long-lasting.

Your high-quality, affordable PVC tarpaulin solution

Choosing the right PVC tarpaulin is vital if you want to ensure high quality, durability, and customer satisfaction. Expafol’s range of high-quality PVC tarpaulin offers a wide range of tarpaulins across every industry with industry-proven quality.

As a leading textile manufacturer with 30 years in the industry, Expafol gives you peace of mind that you are getting the utmost quality for affordable prices. However you are looking to use PVC tarp in your industry or business, find the right texture, finish, colour, and style for every application.

Reach out to our team of experts to find out how you can get started.