In heavy manufacturing and large industries, for each minute or hour lost on productivity, large quantities of profit will drop due to this halting process. This applies to almost every business possible and without a doubt, a vast majority of heavy industries use pipes as one of their core applications in various areas. As unimportant as they may sound, pipes play the crucial role of transporting certain elements (mostly water, oil, petroleum and other chemicals) in industries and are a determining factor for a smooth operational workflow. Although they might not be clearly visible, their “invisible” role is as important as the workforce in a company itself. Consider an oil company with a damaged pipeline in one of their units. Being a massive industry, imagine the losses the company might suffer because of maintenance and repairs to the piping unit. Fortunately, technology and innovation has always been on the plus side for large industries and electrofusion has now played a big role in maintenance and repairs for the piping sector.
With many different pipes available for mainstream and heavy duty industrial purchase, different materials have various elements and properties, hence working with them can be both challenging and time consuming. From PVC, HDPE, PEX, cast iron, stainless steel, galvanised steel and all the other types of pipes used in different industries, repairing them can be extremely tedious due to their size, weight and ease to work with. For any type of pipe fitting that needs quick maintenance and repair, most below-ground units need to be dug up. When this process is completed, the individual unit might have to be removed from the ground to allow maintenance depending on the area where the damage is evident. Hopefully, the damage will only be minor and pipes can be welded easily while still remaining in the ground.
But what about homeowners who do not deal with these heavy duty pipes? Most people do not have access to fancy equipment, let alone the manpower to deal with the damage in most homes. There are certain limitations that an individual homeowner can work with, for instance water or gas lines. Nowadays, most homeowners opt for flexible piping materials such as Polyethylene pipes which are easy to work with. Simple cracks or leaks can be handled easily and quickly with a few specialised tools. One of these tools can come in the form of electrofusion gas fittings. These fittings are great as they allow very quick and easy repair.
Let us say that we want to repair a broken gas line at home or extend it. Assuming we are using a flexible piping material such as a polyethylene based unit, we can use electrofusion gas fittings to create a near perfect weld by using electricity. Most electrofusion gas fittings come with a separate electronic unit (a sort of generator) which connects two leads to coils in the main fitting. A sample quick fix can be applied using these methods:
- Measure the length of each end of both pipes that will be connected with the electrofusion unit (the length can be seen and measured from the unit itself)
- Trim both ends of the pipes which will be connected (trimming should be done evenly just until both ends of the pipes will fit in place in the electrofusion unit)
- Clean both ends of the pipes thoroughly and place them into the electrofusion unit/fitting (on both opposite sides)
- Install the leads from the main generator which connect to the fitting
- Specify the readings/measurements on the generator (usually this is done automatically by the generator)
- Allow the unit to heat up the coils inside the fitting until it switches off by itself
- Allow some time for the unit to cool down
- Remove the leads from the fitting and your “welding” process should be completed
Technology has certainly given us wonders in many different lines of work. As for the piping industry, electrofusion has allowed us to work quickly and efficiently without much hassle. Electrofusion fittings are certainly worth the investment if any home owner uses flexible piping materials for gas or water use. If you live in an area where exhibitions take place, it would be worthwhile to see how these fittings are applied in action. Questions can be asked relating to their functionality and ease of use. Electrofusion is an absolute blessing for pipe workers anywhere.