Last updated on November 7th, 2022 at 10:33 am.
Are you about to invest in the construction of a pipeline? In order for these pipes to perform their function and cause no environmental damage, they need to be maintained and repaired regularly.
The lack of proper maintenance results in leaks and oil spillages, which pollute the environment and affect the transportation of substances.
Given the number of industries that use pipelines for the transport of water, different chemicals, and fuel, it’s no wonder the accent is placed on regular pipe maintenance.
There are numerous pipeline intervention companies, specializing in pipeline maintenance and repair services like leak repairs, hot tapping, line stopping, and freeze stops.
Have a look at the main reasons for hiring such services.
Pipeline failures generally occur due to corrosion when rust causes a gradual deterioration of the metal material. These long pipes can corrode both on the inside and the outside.
In the event of internal corrosion, the transport of corroding liquids at high pressure, such as oil, is responsible for triggering the rusting process.
External corrosion, on the other hand, occurs because of the exposure of the pipeline to various environmental conditions like extreme heat, dampness, sour soil, etc. Also, it’s possible for the pipe to come with an inherent defect in its form, which results in oxidation of the metal.
Regardless of the type of corrosion, this process is detrimental to the condition of the pipeline over time. The walls of the pipe become thin and weak, hence showing the first signs of holes and cracks. Unless these minor defects are handled promptly, the chances of leakage increase by the minute.
Consequently, both the environment and the production process are negatively affected by the leakage until the issue gets resolved.
Moreover, buried pipes are susceptible to experiencing stress corrosion cracking, as the underground environment tends to be highly corrosive. As a result, their surface gradually becomes covered in tiny cracks, which become deeper and lead to an overall dysfunction of the pipeline. Read more about the susceptibility of different materials to stress corrosion cracking (SCC).
In addition, weld defects are another common category of pipeline issues, caused by the use of low-quality materials or an improper welding method. Such defects are responsible for the appearance of corrosion and cracks along the surface of the pipes, usually identified in the final stage of deterioration.
How to minimize the risk of defects?
The risk of pipeline defects can be minimized by performing regular maintenance and inspections of the pipes’ condition. For instance, corrosion can be reduced by applying a special pipe coating that resists rust, along with a special system that cleans the contaminants from the interior.
Regarding stress corrosion cracking, cathodic protection is believed to be an effective method in the reduction of corrosion-related defects.
Additionally, regular pipeline inspections are indispensable not only for minimizing defects but also for meeting the environmental requirements.
For example, examining the pipeline in the course of the installation process enables manufacturers to make corrections wherever necessary. Once the conduit is installed, frequent inspections are essential for spotting minor issues that might evolve into major, costly defects.
Reasons to hire pipeline repair and maintenance services
When coping with an issue, pipeline stakeholders are strongly recommended to hire the assistance of an intervention company. These professionals are certified in performing repair and maintenance services on industrial pipes by abiding by the regulations of the local area.
Hiring contractors with the necessary certification proves these professionals are educated, skilled, and experienced in this industry.
Given the levels of involved risk, pipeline intervention companies are expected to protect their employees by paying for workers’ compensation insurance policies.
Additionally, these companies need to pay for general liability insurance, which covers the expenses in case the workers damage the pipe while repairing it.
Moreover, reputable companies are known for their wide range of services and repairs offered to clients, such as leak repairs, freeze stop, line stopping, hot tapping, etc.
These technicians employ the right equipment and methods to seal leaks of chemicals, fuel, water, and other liquids. The sealants they use in the repair process guarantee a long-term solution to the problem.
Freeze stop services are another frequent reason for requesting the services of pipeline repair technicians. In order for downstream repairs to be handles effortlessly, these professionals use either Nitrogen or CO2 to freeze the liquid inside the pipe to a temperature of 200 ˚F below zero to isolate a specific section.
Furthermore, line stop services are also used in situations where a certain pipe segment has to be isolated while causing no disruptions to the other sections. This method is particularly effective in the event of faulty valves, which have to be repaired or replaced by keeping the rest of the pipe up and running.
Hot tapping is necessary for pipeline stakeholders who need to add a branch connection to the system while ensuring overall functionality. It’s paramount for the technicians you hire to be trained and educated in the field of hot tapping, as this service requires them to follow a certain procedure for the job to be completed successfully.
Another reason to hire such an intervention company is the assistance these experts provide in emergencies. Pipe leaks and ruptures are supposed to be handled momentarily in order to minimize the damage done to the environment and the production process.
The longer you wait to call for assistance, the greater the chances of a complete system failure. Fortunately, the majority of repair technicians provide immediate response when dealing with emergencies.
Quick response is crucial in emergency situations, as the consequences to the environment and the budget of the company can be astounding.
Not getting the issue solved as soon as possible might result in legal issues, as you will be going against the local environmental regulations. Make sure the company you choose provides fast services to avoid further problems.
Pipeline defects should be repaired promptly to avoid environmental and financial damage! Hope this guide on pipeline repair services was useful to you.