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Valve Basics Training Helps Fill Industry Skills Gap

Valve Basics Training Helps Fill Industry Skills Gap

One of the most keenly felt needs in tod...

An End-User’s Perspective on Valve Selection and Risk

An End-User’s Perspective on Valve Selection and Risk

I am not a valve expert, although I ofte...

New Test Stamp and More Updates on Pressure Vessel Codes

New Test Stamp and More Updates on Pressure Vessel Codes

A new test organization program and stam...

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Industry Headlines

Chemours Selects Wilmington, DE for its Global Headquarters

17 HOURS AGO

The Chemours Company will locate its global headquarters in Wilmington, DE. Chemours began evaluating headquarters location options more than 6 months ago with Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania all under active consideration. Recent changes to Delaware’s corporate tax structure were key comp...

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ValvTechnologies Successfully Completes NUPIC Audit

6 DAYS AGO

ValvTechnologies, Inc. recently achieved NUPIC-approved suppliers list status, upon successful completion of the Nuclear Procurement Issues Committee (NUPIC) audit conducted at the Houston facility. NUPIC members include all domestic U.S. nuclear utilities as well as several international members.

Form...

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Feds Warn of Bolt Failures in Offshore Drilling

12 HOURS AGO

On Monday, Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) director Brian Salerno held a press conference aimed at oil & gas regulators. The issue he wanted to draw attention to is the failure of bolts in offshore drilling equipment such as blowout preventers. This problem, Salerno says, has...

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Monthly Renewable Electricity Generation Surpasses Previous Years

15 HOURS AGO

Renewable electricity generation has surpassed levels from previous years in every month so far this year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration ( EIA ). Both hydroelectric and non-hydroelectric renewables have contributed to this trend, but in different ways. On the West Coast, hydr...

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U.S. Consumer Confidence at 11-Month High

-1 DAYS AGO

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which had decreased slightly in July, increased in August. The Index now stands at 101.1 , compared to 96.7 in July. Consumers’ appraisal of current conditions improved in August. Those stating business conditions are “good” increased f...

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Advanced Manufacturing Outpaces Rest of Production Sector

18 HOURS AGO

A new report from the Brookings Institution finds that high-tech advanced manufacturing bucked both global economic challenges and the longstanding shrinking of the traditional manufacturing sector over the last two years. While job losses were felt in other pockets of the production sector, advance...

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Protect Me Please

Everyone in the valve industry should be in the protection racket. No, I don’t mean dealing with cousin Vito from Jersey; I‘m talking about protecting valves after they leave the plant for shipment to the customer or while they are in storage waiting to be used. Valves that are contaminated or damaged before they are installed are a real problem that costs the industry hundreds of thousands of dollars every year to correct, either through repair or replacement.

 

Every valve should be adequately packaged and protected for shipment, and every valve received by the user should be well protected until it is time for installation. As far as initial shipment, most valve manufacturers do a good job of protecting their products. There are dozens of types and styles of protectors available to cover any end configuration. These end protectors serve two valuable purposes: The first is to ensure dirt and debris stay out of the bore of the valve, and the second is to keep machined surfaces underneath the valves from being damaged enroute or during installation at the job site.

If valves are not blocked in crates for shipment, they must be strapped to skids or pallets in such a way that the valves will not slide into the machined areas of adjacent valves. Even with an end protector attached, the mass of a loose valve combined with transportation vibration can result in nasty scratches on companion valves. If the scratch is on a machined surface such as a raised face, the cost to repair the valve can reach hundreds of dollars or, if alloy valves are involved, even more.

DAMAGE FROM WATER

Most end protectors are not waterproof, and a pouring rain can penetrate through virtually any small leak path past the end connector. If moisture remains in the valve for a period of time, rust will develop that can damage interior surfaces.

The biggest enemy of good valve care is the infamous lay-down yard at construction sites. It sometimes seems like, during the dark of night, mysterious demons inhabit these places and randomly remove end covers from the valves. Without this protection, the sand, gravel, weld spatter and other construction debris collects in the valve ports. Then, unprotected serrations of raised-face valves become rapidly rusted and lose their texture and geometry, sometimes requiring expensive field machining to restore integrity. Oftentimes valves will be stored horizontally with one of the flanges flat on the ground. This poor storage practice can result in moisture being trapped in the port and possibly additional mechanical damage if the valve is dragged across the gravel.

Valve stems are usually shipped lubricated. This lubrication is a magnet for dirt and sand, which will ultimately act abrasively on the stem and stem bushing. Because of this, stems should be covered with a protective wrapping, especially if any sandblasting will be performed upwind from the storage area.

If valves have been ordered in a cleaned condition for special service applications, extra care must be taken to ensure their integrity. Bagged valves should not be stored on bare pallets due to the possibility of tearing. A valve that is to be end sealed and not bagged should have desiccant appropriate for the valve’s size and for the period it will be stored. Cleaned and degreased sealed valves are especially prone to rusting because of condensation that forms inside the completely unlubricated valve.

TIPS FOR STORAGE

Of course the optimum storage solution is inside a nice dry warehouse, but that can get expensive. So in lieu of a roof and four walls, here are some tips to follow if you have to store valves outside for a long period of time:

  • Make sure that the end protectors are on the valve and tightly attached.
  • Do not lay valves horizontally on the ground on one flange.
  • If stored flat on the ground, be sure that timbers are placed under the flange or valve body to keep it off the ground.
  • If valves are to be stored outside for a year or more, a spray of WD-40 or other rust inhibitor on the ends will help eliminate possible corrosion and damage to the raised faces of flanged valves.
  • If possible, the stem threads on OS&Y valves should be protected from the elements.
  • Try not to store valves near an abrasive blasting area.
  • If dirt and grit has entered the valve, remove it with a careful blast of compressed air before the valve is cycled or installed.
  • Take extra care in storing resilient seated valves as their seating surfaces are easily damaged.

Greg Johnson, a contributing editor to Valve Magazine, is president of United Valve (www.unitedvalve.com), which offers factory-authorized valve modifications and repair services from its Houston, TX facility. Reach him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

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