Identifying Early Signs of Damage In Pipelines
Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Identifying Early Signs of Damage In Pipelines

How to Reduce Pipeline Failures

With Alberta experiencing one of the wettest summers in previous decades, standing groundwater and increased moisture in the soil present a bigger than ever threat to pipelines. Left undetected and untreated, soil-side corrosion can cause significant damage to your line, including cracks, leaks, and catastrophic failures. Learn how to spot early signs of damage, as well as the value of regular inspections below.

Signs of a Damaged Pipeline

Detecting damage as early as possible plays an important role in maintaining the safety and efficiency of your pipeline. Whether your line is buried or above ground, regular inspection both external and internal (more on that later) is crucial to catching the early signs of wear and tear and preventing further issues. Key signs to look for include:

Poor Water Pressure

Weak water pressure can often serve as an indication that your pipes have begun to deteriorate. As corrosion builds up, the flow of liquid is impeded, which can lead to poor water pressure and backups in the line.

Water Discoloration

A reddish or brown tint to your water supply is a surefire sign that your line is corroding.  In hard water systems the pipelines tend to develop internal tubercules which can protect the water from being discoloured; however, corrosion continues underneath the tubercules even though it is slowed.

Recurring Leaks

If you notice certain spots continuously leaking, even on a micro-scale, it’s time to take action. Over time, consistent exposure to excessive moisture, minerals and salts in the soil can slowly eat away at the pipes. Therefore, it’s most important to stay on top of regular inspection and proactive maintenance.

Why Inspection Is Your Best Asset

When it comes to beating the damage caused by corrosion, regular inspection is the best way to guarantee and extend the longevity of your line. Internal inspection using PICA's in-line inspection Tools will allow you to find and stop minor issues before they have a chance to worsen. This, in turn, translates to the less frequent need for repair, as well as the reduced risk of sudden failures.

PICA Recon+ (Acoustic + Sphere) In-Line Screening technology

As a leading provider of pipeline and water main inspection throughout North America, PICA Corp is pleased to introduce one of the latest additions to our line up of tools and technology. PICA Recon+ Acoustics In-Line screening technology (powered by INGU) is now available to the North America water marketplace and is sure to revolutionize leak detection.

Taking the form of a small diameter sphere, the PICA Recon+ device can travel freely with product flow through most pipelines ranging from 2”-78”. In addition to extremely accurate screening for leaks, the Recon+ device offers valuable insights on geometry and a wide range of other factors that enhance inspection quality and reliability. Benefits of PICA Acoustic Tools Include:

  • Screening for bulk wall thickness changes in metallic pipes and identifying magnetic features
  • Easy detection of leaks and air pockets
  • Locate deposits, blockages and debris in the line
  • Accurately measure pressure differentials.

All of this information can be gathered without interruption of your line’s operation, allowing for maximum convenience. Learn more about this technology, as well as our other services by contacting our team today.