Those who are industry experts will know what a ‘line stop’ is and what it is used for. But for those who are still new to the concept, a brief explanation has been provided below.
The mechanical technique of creating a temporary isolation spot in a live pipeline that cannot be shut down or frozen, or where it doesn’t currently exist is the basic definition of this, and a more in-depth one can be found online. There are a few questions that many will have before considering this move, we answer some of the common ones below.
Why Is Line Stopping A Requirement in Some Industries?
There are various reasons as to why this methodology is sometimes implemented, some of these include:
- In cases where existing valves are inoperable
- New-construction sites
- When installing vacuum of pressure systems
- Branches are connected without valves.
- To maintain flow as opposed to shutting down the whole operation
- To isolate one part of a pipeline while others continue to function
- To negate the overall disruption of services
Where Can Line Stopping Be Used?
Any existing pipeline can be stopped, and ones made of various metals and plastics such as stainless steel, ductile iron, cast iron, steel, copper and even cement asbestos pipes. Depending on the methods to be used, the requirements taken into consideration before a job is started include aspects such as checking the flow rates, pressure, temperature and the product that is inside the pipe.
The reason for implementing this method in most industries is to repair, maintain or replace any of the sections of the line and also to replace valves when needed. However, as a last resort, when you hire the experts, they will need to do a thorough assessment of the situation first, before they recommend this solution. In some cases, the entire system needs to be shut down before work can commence, and this can be disruptive to workflow.
What Is Involved in the Method?
Sometimes also known as line stop actuator, it is a method used in various industries some of which include power generation sectors, oil and gas, utilities industries and petrochemicals. This is a form of ‘hot tapping’ and one or more flanges, tees or valves are either clamped to the pipeline or welded onto it.
The pipe is then drilled to create temporary isolation and the stopping gadgets are fitted onto it. When a line is under pressure, this is often the best way to stop the flow of product inside so work can be done on it. Sometimes a bypass is required, and this is determined by the client’s or company’s preferences, and this is done during the installation process before the mainline is stopped: https://www.trenchlesspedia.com/definition/2434/bypass
The well-known and established fitters usually plug the bespoke fittings onto the system and add a secondary stop for a more robust solution and to minimize any leaks or hindrances in the future.
Pipelines are commonly used in various industries and this method is not restricted to any medium, there are a number of different ones that this solution can be implemented onto, for instance, those that contain the flow of raw water, natural gas, petroleum products, chilled water, heating systems, domestic water, condensation and more. So, you ask yourself, why would you choose this route? Well, there are many benefits to this technique which is used widely around the world.
A Few of The Many Benefits of Line Stopping
Whether it is bypassing or stopping, there are various advantages to this method and below are just a few of the many:
- There is no need to completely shut down company operations
- Contamination is drastically reduced
- There is minimal disruption of existing services
- It is highly useful when trying not to waste any gases or liquids by leaking
- It is a versatile technique that can be done on most types of pipe materials
- It is also useful for hydrants, sprinkler systems and fire protection
- There is no need for backfilling or drainage
There are many pipeline line stopping company services that are presently providing this type of facility, and the good ones, usually get the job done within the quickest turn-around times and use the most efficient means. Hiring the right people to help you out can be a life-long investment, as you can call them to do continuous work at your site as well as maintenance if needed.
When the job is not done properly, you risk losing a lot of your product, not to mention revenues and your company’s bottom line. This modern-day technique has helped many big-name giants to save their systems issues rapidly and without any hassles. It is the safest, simplest and quickest solution available and is universally recognized as well.
The Costs of Shutting Down Operations
In comparison to the costs you acquire of shutting down your entire operation, from a financial viewpoint, for example, shutting down a water channel just to fix one thing, means many of those in the area could suffer from not having water to drink, bathe, cook, clean, do their laundry and more. Nearby residents will not be happy about this and your company’s reputation could be ruined for life.
The proper way to handle it is to first have a conversation with the company you hire, then discuss what is needed in terms of the utilities and if any preparation is needed before the work is conducted. Ask them the right questions such as what equipment will they use? How will they go about performing the task? Will they have fire trucks or the right equipment on standby in case of a fire? Will it disrupt the above-ground services?
To avoid any hassles, and the risk of ruining your organization’s reputation, make sure you have all the right details at hand and know exactly what is involved from your side, from concept to completion of the project, as well as the engineers or mechanics side.