Hot Tapping Water Lines: What You Need to Know

Hot tapping or hot tap welding is an effective means of altering the course and flow of water by adding new branches of pipe line to an existing pipe.

This method eliminates the need to shut down pipelines and expedites the process of extending or altering the course of the pipe line. 

By utilizing hot tapping, companies can preserve their revenue, which some estimates say is close to $365,000.00 in revenue daily

What is hot tapping water lines and how can it preserve your profits? This article will help you find out and use it to your company’s advantage. 

What Is Hot Tapping Water Lines? 

Hot tapping is utilized when a pipeline is drilled or punctured to create a new branch to the pipe line.

Without hot tapping, this is only performed during maintenance or while the pipe line is serviced. 

This is the more efficient manner to perform repairs or modifications to a pipeline. It minimizes the time the pipeline is down and inoperative and maximizes the repairs of the line. 

The benefits to this system is it does not require that the pipeline be shut down or emptied prior to the operation. 

How Does Hot Tapping work? 

Hot tapping applies a hot welding saddle to the pipe where the drilling is to occur. It is secured to the pipe, the new branch is inserted over it, and heated pressure is applied until the connection is made and complete. 

Once this is complete, the tie-in may be made, and the device removed. This new branch can now be made operable for the pipeline. 

These machines are effective at performing the task efficiently. By utilizing this method, companies not only save time, but run less of a risk of losing resources due to leakage. 

However, be sure to consider proper safety measures. 

Is it Safe to Operate?

There are some risks associated with hot tapping pipes. Many of these risks are associated with poor handling of equipment, a poor management plan, or faulty equipment. 

OSHA reported the death of one man who perished back in 2016 while working on the pipe lines when the pipe broke while hot tapping. Debris and shards of metal struck him and killed him. 

This is not a common occurrence, but it does illustrate the potential hazards of this task and the importance of quality tools while working. 

The best way to protect yourself and your workers is to draft inspection plans to evaluate your pipes and tools. 

How Can You Take Advantage of Hot Tapping?

The key to successful hot tapping is to find the right tools and crew to perform your task of hot tapping water lines. 

RAK Industrial Services has all its crew professionally trained to operate safely and effectively.  We give all new hires 10 hours of OSHA safety training, with an additional 30 hours of training for the first year of working. 

We understand the need to combine efficiency and safety in their tasks. Call today to get a quote of service for your next big job. 



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