Pipe Supports in Saudi Arabia

Pipe Supports: An Ultimate Guide For You

If you have a business that makes use of pipes, you may have had issues such as pipe rattling, etc. This happens because of pipes are loose. When they undergo extra weight, the pipes start to rattle. This is problematic because over time the pipes can become weak. They can also disconnect from their main attachment point. So what is the solution? You can use pipe supports. But what are pipe supports? This blog talks in detail about them so read till the end to learn all about them.

What are Pipe Supports?

In a nutshell, they are used to support the weight of pipes. The supports not only elongate the life of pipes but also help keep them fastened properly. They are classified based on how they support the pipes. There are many uses of supports which make them a great tool to be used.

How do you support piping?

Pipe supports have a crucial role in the proper functioning of pipes. They support piping in multiple ways. They:

Carry weight of the pipes

Supports carry the weight of the pipes by making use of equipment such as clamps, etc. In some cases, they are also welded where a larger load is expected in pipes. In addition to that they can also be used to keep insulation in line.

Take stress off pipes

Since the pipes are properly clamped down; the stress levels of the pipes are reduced. If stress levels exceed the threshold level, they can damage the pipes during thermal expansion. Thus, using pipe supports can help prevent that. This can keep the pipes in good shape for a much longer time.

Help eliminate leakages from pipes

The joints of pipes can become weak over time. This is mainly caused due to the unintended movements of pipes. It can also happen due to bad steel fabrication in the first place. This can be eliminated by making use of the supports. They help minimize unintended movements, etc. More importantly, they ensure the pipes stay in their position as they are attached with support. To avoid any mishaps, you should carry out detailed research to choose the right steel fabricator for the job.

Absorb and minimize vibrations in pipes

Pipes witness a lot of vibrations throughout their lives. That can be caused due to multiple reasons such as fluid flow, wind, etc. These vibrations no matter how minimal can cause the pipes to lose their strength over time. They can also cause the pipes to loosen from their attachment points. This can lead to fatal accidents. Supports keep the pipes tight and minimize vibrations and movements. As the pipes become stable, the overall health of the pipes is maximized.

Allow proper alignment of pipes

Environmental factors such as wind, humidity, heat, etc., can cause the pipes to flex. If this happens enough times, the pipes can move from their original position slightly. This misalignment can have drastic impacts on the pipe’s health. It can damage the joints and fittings. Thus it is necessary to ensure that the pipes stay in position at all times.

What are the types of pipe supports in piping systems?

Pipe supports can be classified into three major categories. They are listed as follows:

General classification of pipes

General classification allows the supports to be broadly classified. This helps identify the purpose they will be serving. There are two general classifications of pipes. They are as follows:

  1. Primary supports
  2. Secondary supports

Classification based on pipe construction

This classification divides the pipes based on their construction. They are listed down below as follows:

  1. Rigid supports
  2. Elastic supports
  3. Adjustable supports

Standard pipe supports based on pipe functionality

To maximize the functionality, the following types of supports are utilized:

a.     Loose support

Loose supports are used in cases where you want free movement in all directions except a vertical downward position.

b.     Longitudinal supports

Longitudinal supports only restrict movement that is perpendicular to the pipe. However, they allow movement in a longitudinal position. By pairing them with loose supports, the movements can be further restricted.

c.     Transverse guides

Transverse guides are very similar to longitudinal supports. However, they restrict longitudinal position contrary to longitudinal supports.

d.    Fixed-point supports

Fixed-point supports only allow rotational movement. They restrict movement in all other directions.

e.     Anchor supports

Anchor supports are used for a very specific purpose i.e., to restrict movement in all directions. This comes in handy in cases where you don’t want movement. Rather an anchor point is required.

f.      Limit stop supports

These supports are beneficial where you want movement to some extent. They allow movement in all directions but up to a certain limit. That limit can be set. This is a very diverse tool and can be dynamically used as per user requirements.

What are primary supports?

In pipes, primary supports are directly attached to the pipes. They are either clamped down or welded to the pipes. This provides excellent rigidity to the pipes. Some examples of such supports are pipe hangers, trunnions, etc.

What are secondary supports?

Instead of being directly attached, these supports are connected to the foundations or structural members of the pipes. They aid primary supports and help keep them in place.

What are rigid pipe supports?

The rigid supports are fabricated in a way that they don’t offer much flexibility. Their purpose is to restrict the movement thus allowing movement in only one direction. These supports rest on the foundation thus they are categorized as secondary supports.

What are elastic supports?

Elastic supports allow elasticity. They are used in pipes that experience a lot of vertical movements. Their main purpose is to control the vibrations of the pipes. They also utilize a compression spring which helps them support the load of the pipes.

What are adjustable supports?

The adjustable supports provide flexibility while being rigid. This means that they do not move from their place after being adjusted. They can be adjusted as per the requirements of the user. The main usage of these supports is supporting the pipes. They are great for pipes that require adjustment over time.

How do you secure steel pipes?

Keeping the classifications of support in mind, there are multiple types of support in Saudi Arabia. They are used to secure steel pipes. Some major types are listed as follows:

1.    Pipe hangers

To allow rigidity, pipe hangers are attached to the structure below. They are U-shaped and are used to hold the pipes. The hangers have various weight and size specifications. Al Safrik Steel has a wide variety of pipe hangers to choose from.

2.    Pipe clamps

Pipe clamps are used to provide stable support to pipes. They only allow minimal movement to the pipes. Steel pipe clamps also come with an added rubber layer. This not only dampens the vibrations but also reduces the noise. The additional rubber layer is great for conditions where pipes face noise problems.

3.    Pipe saddles

To support horizontal pipes, these supports are placed underneath them. They are highly beneficial for pipes that run longer horizontal lengths.

4.    Clevis hangers

Similar to pipe hangers, they are also U-shaped. These hangers usually attach to a structural component. Clevis hangers provide some movement to pipes and are used to horizontally support pipes.

5.    Shoe supports

Shoe supports are used to anchor pipes where they encounter an obstacle. Another purpose they serve is changing the direction of pipes. The supports are mainly used to enhance the stability of pipes. By making use of base plates, the required stability is achieved.

6.    Spring hangers

Paired with springs, spring hangers are excellent candidates for dampening vibrations. Spring hangers are also equipped with guides and anchors. They help them to stop pipe movements.

7.    Trunnion supports

To make the pipes rigid, trunnion supports or dummy pipes are welded to the main pipes. Additionally, they support the pipes both in horizontal and vertical directions.

What problems can come with pipe supports and how to solve them?

When dealing with support, problems can arise if they are not handled properly. In countries such as Saudi Arabia, harsh weather conditions can cause problems as well. Some common problems are listed down below:

Supports getting loose

Supports get loose when they are not properly connected to the pipes. This can also occur if they are not clamped down tightly. People face this problem very commonly with supports in pipes. The best way to mitigate this problem is by double-checking each support. Once the job finishes, always check each support. Shake them gently and if they move, clamp them down tightly.

Stripping and breaking in clamps and bolts

In high-pressure systems, or pipes that are susceptible to high stress, supports can shift from their position. This mainly happens because the bolts loosen up over time, or they start stripping. Loosened bolts lead to slight movements in the supports. This can be fatal as in high-pressure systems, the pipes can break or explode. To ensure that the supports don’t break, they should be regularly checked and tightened. If a support shows premature signs of breaking, it should be replaced immediately. However, if supports break they can be very dangerous to deal with. Making use of tools such as pipe rigging rollers can ensure the safety of workers.

Corrosion of supports

Steel supports corrode due to one reason only. They either lose their galvanized coating or don’t have them in the first place. To ensure your supports don’t corrode, proper use of coatings should be ensured. Al Safrik Steel’s products come coated with galvanized steel coatings. This ensures that our pipe supports don’t corrode. Moreover, they should also be inspected regularly and recoated if they show signs of wear and tear.

Noise problems in piping systems

Supports make noise because of either getting lost or losing their padding. Some people do not get support with padding because of cost constraints. This is a common mistake people make because of not properly identifying their needs. If you suspect that your pipes are going to make noise, get support with padding. Moreover, always make sure that your supports are properly tightened. Almost all of the problems occur because of support getting loose. Thus you should ensure that your pipes are always tightened properly.

What are the benefits of pipe supports?

There are many benefits of using supports in piping systems. They:

  1. Properly secure pipes minimizing their movements
  2. Minimize pipe vibrations
  3. Reduce pipe loads
  4. Help elongate the lives of the pipes
  5. Protect pipes against natural factors such as wind, etc.

How Al Safrik Steel can truly transform the piping industry?

Al Safrik Steel is a steel fabrication company in Saudi Arabia. We have a very diverse portfolio of steel products. We have engineered some of the best products for the piping industry. Our products are made from high-grade steel. This ensures that the pipes stay rigid and firm irrespective of their load. Our products also come with galvanized steel coatings. These coatings allow them to sustain all sorts of weather conditions.

We don’t only make products for the piping industry. Our products are also optimized for the construction industry. Products such as Man Baskets, Waste Skips, etc., are widely used in the construction industry. Such products are truly versatile and can be used in the piping industry as well. So waste no more time. Buy products from Al Safrik Steels, the brand that people trust, today.