The important information you need to choose the right pipe can be found here. It’s no small task to choose the right steel pipe, and even if you’re experienced mistakes will be made. Following this guide will help with the process of buying steel pipes. Afterwards, you can always find more information at varnerpipe.com.
Things To Consider Before Looking
Find about two or three pipe comparison charts that specifically note material, applications and corrosion resistance. This can help narrow down a lot of close choices when price becomes the deciding factor. The charts will usually say the same thing about the steel pipes you are considering. When conflicting information is found, you can always add an additional chart to get a clearer picture of the details. Don’t underestimate the power of doing side by side comparisons when looking at steel pipes. That one feature you overlook could be the biggest thing you need when starting a new project.
A Rundown Of The Different Steel Types
There are three main steel types that are worth mentioning. Carbon, alloy and stainless steel are the three types that you will do the most business with. Carbon is strong and easy to work with. With its low number of alloying elements, carbon is also one of the least expensive pipes to get. Alloy is strong against impact while also being more resistant to stress. The many combinations of alloy means that high quality mixtures are more profound in the industry. Stainless steel does not rust, and therefore is a huge benefit for steel pipes. In industries where corrosion protection is mandatory, stainless steel reigns supreme.
What Is The Grade Of The Steel?
One of the first steps to getting steel pipes is to determine what grade is needed. Narrowing down steel pipes will always require knowing what grade will do the best job. But regardless off the grade, the sizing will remain the same since it follows the same industry standard. Consider that one less variable you have to worry about when getting a steel pipe. ASME and ASTM usually have piping specs that show which grades of steel are beneficial for your project. The main difference between the two is that they have different standards to go by. Even though the grades are similar across both spec sheets, their standards will often determine what testing is done for each.
The SAE and AISI are two other organizations that should be looked at for steel pipe grades. Their numbering system simplifies a lot of the more complex classifications of steel piping. Keep in mind that the numbering system is only one part of the specifications needed when ordering steel pipes. This is a good example of where the information from the other organizations come in. SAE/AISI combined with ASME/ASTM gives you a full profile when deciding which steel pipe is better for your project.
The last grade sort of sits by itself, and for good reason. API 5L is strictly used for the oil and gas industry. As its own category, the grade has multiple delivery conditions to choose from. Things can get complex when comparing the different options with API 5L. Just like the previous choices, the grades are there to help you narrow down what works best for your industry.
Choosing Between Seamless or Welded
Tons of customization options for steel pipes include the choice of seamless or welded. This requirement changes on each project, so you must know which one will get the job done. Welded pipes are more cost effective than seamless, especially when buying in bulk. The consistency from pipe to pipe enhances the wall thickness. To keep this consistency active, manufacturers can check the internal surface of the tubes. This is something you can’t do with seamless pipes due to the way they’re made. Seamless pipes have the advantage with consistent roundness and lack of seams. Often, a weak seam in a pipe can be a future headache for a project. By eliminating that issue with seamless pipes, you have one less problem to worry about. This feature becomes important when you’re worried about corrosion or breakage.
Buying in bulk will always have its advantages. When buying pipe bundles, you get the added benefit of mixing length and size. The discount you get by buying cut-lengths of pipe can save your company a ton of money. The savings don’t end there, and also apply to businesses that purchase pipes at full length. Depending on where you get it from, buying at full length may carry a larger discount than buying mixed. Pay attention to a manufacturer’s pipe page to see where the most savings are. Chances are full length steel pipes will see the biggest savings when purchasing or larger projects.
Buyers that aren’t concerned about price still need to know the footage of pipe needed for a project. It is one of the requirements for a quote and should be one of the top things on your purchase checklist. With this information, you may be able to plan for future projects that require the same materials. When price is a concern, going over what you need will cost you more on both ends- purchase and cleanup. Trying to buy extra in case a mistake happens will lead you to a bottomless hole. Planning carefully is the only way to prevent this from becoming a problem with steel pipes.
Sizing specifications often contain plumbing terminology that buyers are not familiar with. Know your fittings and what steel pipe sizes will be compatible before committing to an order. Pipe fittings and sizes can always be research using a manufacturer’s chart, if one is provided. When you’re left to figure it out on your own, it is a good idea to create a personal reference table for the company. Update and refer to this table whenever you need to make a purchase for new steel pipes.
Someone telling you that a specific supplier is the best in the world is only one part of the selling point. Do your own footwork to find out if a steel pipe supplier is compatible with your company. There are different top choices based on region, project type, grade and more. That means suppliers in Asia will have different benefits than suppliers in America. On top of the locational differences you must consider bulk price history. There are suppliers that may never offer a discount, even when the market is not in their favor. When price is your driving factor for a project, this is something that you can’t ignore.
Why Coating Matters
Coating gives steel piping additional properties to make it more attractive to the buyer. Black steel is cheaper to manufacture but great as an alternative to galvanized pipe. Projects that require the transport of gas will fair better on price by using black steel pipe. Although its weakness is water, you can save a ton if the project aligns with the strength of black steel.
Galvanized steel is stronger than black steel, and therefore more expensive. It is strong against corrosion and can carry water without a problem. Mineral deposits have a hard time building up in a project that uses galvanized steel pipes. Despite its strengths, this type of pipe is weak when transporting gas. More than one company has purchased black steel when galvanized steel pipes would have been a much better fit.
Pre-painted steel has multiple uses, from residential to business. Coil coating is used to apply different types of coating materials. All of this leads to a steel pipe that delivers both in design and durability. As the most flexible steel pipe coating, it can be used on multiple projects and is still competitively priced. Pre-painted steel can be as durable or as visually attractive as needed for any project.
A Small List Of Red Flags
You won’t run into a lot of scams in the steel pipe industry when going with a reputable supplier. Manufacturers of steel pipes have a reputation to keep. That makes it very difficult for larger companies to scam the little guy. That doesn’t mean you should ignore obvious red flags that pop up. This information applies when dealing with smaller companies. When you find yourself in a situation where a smaller company is the best deal, check for reviews. A company with no reviews is a bad idea to pour money into. Another red flag is when a smaller company doesn’t offer enough information about the product. This applies to companies of all sizes, but for smaller steel piping companies it is unacceptable. The buyer is expected to do some of the research, not all of it.
The number of charts made for steel pipe recommendations is staggering. Don’t let the information overwhelm you into making a rushed decision. Whether for personal or professional use, getting the right steel pipes comes down to research. Take your time, and the final decision will make all the difference in the world.