Why traditional methods of pipe repair are outdated

Louise Davis

Peter Crossen explores the alternatives to clamps and how developments in maintenance materials are making clamps a thing of the past

We’ve all had cuts and scrapes we can take care of at home, but for more serious wounds, seeking medical assistance for the right treatment is a must.

With concerns over long term physical implications and unplanned time off work, you are then hopefully faced with a quick recovery.

For decades, the best way to mend an open wound was by having stitches.

However, research has shown that glue can heal just as well and with a better cosmetic finish. Similarly, clamps have been traditionally used to temporarily repair damaged pipes due to their quick and straightforward application.

Simple enough to use, clamps allow plant engineers to manage a leak and, depending on the system at fault, shutdown is often required to reduce the number of health and safety factors, as well as the risk of contamination.

Like an injury, leaks can happen at any time and require immediate treatment to reduce further problems and safety risks.

Based on the design and bulk of most clamps, they cannot be applied to pipes in confined areas, where leaks are most likely to occur.

Restricted access and poor visibility prevent engineers from proactively avoiding common issues that cause damaged pipes, such as rust.

Plant managers require a solution that works quickly, if not immediately and offers in-situ repairs, which is not always guaranteed with clamps.

This is where compact repair solutions such as NCH Europe’s Mega Fix-IT HT offers not only a versatile alternative to clamps, but a value-added benefit to this traditional method.

Capable of delivering high strength repairs at temperatures up to 26˚C, in the form of a temperature resistant puttie, Mega Fix-IT HT allows fast and accurate placement.

Available in a waterproof formula that can be applied while the system remains operational; the puttie can also be used in combination with other products such as bandages.

Easy to store and activated by water, the bandages work by hugging the contours and joints of even the most difficult bends of a pipe.  Available in six sizes, they can be used across a wide range of industrial applications no matter the pipe diameter.

Similar to the bandages, NCH Europe offers a third product, which uses self-amalgamating technology that can also be applied while the pipe is online.

The Stretch and Seal tape is made stronger by using multiple layers and can resist pressures twice as high as other similar products currently available on the market.

With no need to call-out an engineer, all of NCH Europe’s pipe repair solutions comply with the water regulations advisory scheme (WRAS) and are approved for contact with potable water, without the prolonged risk of contamination.

With any open wound, one of the main priorities is doing everything possible to reduce the chances of infection, which could dramatically affect your recovery time.

Having a first aid kit means you are prepared to take care of an injury and reduce any further implications in emergency situations.

With NCH Europe’s pipe repair solutions, plant managers can pro-actively limit or even avoid unplanned downtime because of a damaged pipe, by having their own on-site first aid kit to easily manage an unexpected fault.

Peter Crossen is VP of the Maintenance and Partsmaster Innovation Platform at global water, energy and maintenance solutions provider NCH Europe

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