Hot Tapping

Repairs With Zero Downtime

Hot tapping is a repair method that makes a connection to an existing pipe or tank without causing interruption or downtime of that pipe or tank. This means that a pipe or tank can continue to be in operation whilst maintenance or modifications are being done to it.

When you have tight schedules and efficiency to uphold, hot tapping may be your best solution when it comes to quick, emergency repairs.

The process works by attaching a weld-on or bolt-on saddle to the pipe with the flanged outlet. The valve is then bolted onto the saddle and a pressure tight tapping machine is attached to the valve. With everything secure and attached, the tapping machine then bores into the pipeline until the tap is complete. Once complete, the valve is closed, the tapping machine is removed, and a new branch connection is made live.

This type of work is delicate and must be completed by professionals who are trained and experienced. RAK has years of experience under our belt, and we adhere to the American Petroleum Institute RP2201 regulations on hot tapping to ensure complete safety.

Before performing any work, RAK works diligently and thoroughly to ensure:

  • Safety. Hot tapping typically involves welding on pipelines, piping, or tanks in operation. This means a proper “hot work” risk assessment must be completed to ensure conditions are safe for all persons. 
  • System Configuration. The configuration of the system must be such that hot tapping can proceed without any hiccups. This is usually a more critical consideration for piping configurations and tanks than for pipelines. Hot tapping should not be completed if access restrictions could cause an unsafe work environment. Surrounding environmental conditions such as soil conditions, water tables, vegetation overgrowth, unsafe trench excavation, and other factors are also part of this consideration.
  • Welding Suitability. We work to determine if safe welding can be performed. 
  • Regulatory requirements. We also carefully evaluate all regulations (industry codes, local bylaws, etc.) before performing any hot tapping operation and will not proceed if the regulations are not met.

You need a partner who you can trust to perform hot tapping with experience and safety. Contact RAK today to discuss our qualifications further.