What Is Pipeline Deterioration?
Pipeline deterioration happens when water quality gets affected due to internal corrosion of unlined metallic components, biofilm build-up, or poor maintenance. Reduced hydraulic capacity and a high leakage rate also cause deterioration in holes in pipe barrels. Material degradation, poor installation, manufacturing defects, and operating conditions can all contribute to corrosion.
What Is Internal Corrosion?
Internal corrosion is the deterioration of metal that results from an electrochemical reaction.
This reaction causes the iron in the steel pipe to rust resulting in metal loss in the pipe. If left unmitigated, corrosion can cause the steel to lose its strength and possibly render it unable to contain the fluid in the pipeline at its operating pressure. Different environmental conditions on the inside of the pipeline are a vital factor of internal corrosion. The contaminants in corrosive materials are in the transported commodity, such as hydrogen sulfide, carbon dioxide, other chemicals, or even water.
What are the Risks?
There can potentially be many risks of internal corrosion. This pipeline deterioration can result in a gradual and localized metal loss on the interior surface of pipeline systems. This reduces the wall thickness of the pipe or other equipment. Metal loss can occur over an area of the pipe’s interior surface in isolated spots. If left untreated, internal corrosion can weaken pipes and make them more susceptible to overpressure, earth movement and other external elements increase the risk of different types of pipeline failures.
How to Prevent Pipeline Deterioration
Implementing preventive measures that are routinely monitored will assist in preventing intern corrosion. For example, pipeline operators control the moisture and chemical content of the products transported through their pipelines to help preserve the pipes. Or you can run devices called “cleaning pigs” through the pipes to remove materials that can lead to internal corrosion. Federal pipeline safety regulations require pipeline operators to develop and continually inspect and assess the integrity of pipelines that could affect highly populated areas.
What Can You Do?
Be aware of pipelines located near you and be observant of signs of pipeline damage or leakage. With pipeline deterioration, it’s important to keep your safety in mind. If you ever come across a pipe that you feel needs to be inspected, give us a call and let us handle the rest!
Schedule Your Annual Plumbing Maintenance Service With Stephens
Is it about time for your pipelines to be checked? Contact Stephens Plumbing, Heating, and Air Conditioning today to have your plumbing system inspected by our expert team of technicians.