Water line hot tapping is a safe way to tie into an existing pressurized system. It is done by drilling or cutting in the presence of stream while under pressure and enables a construction crew to make a water line connection without having to interrupt the area around it.
For a business that needs to connect water lines between a new structure to an existing structure, they will avoid having down time using this process. Pressurized casing fluids can be drained off using this process as well. It is also used to add test points and/or various sensors for pressure and temperature.
Water line hot-taps range in size from a ½ inch hole to a 48-inch tap with use for quality control testing to installing ports, t-sections, valves, or other pipes. It is the first step taken when line stopping is needed. Camera, video, and tracing of lines are done before anything else in order to know where the drainage, sewer, and water pipes are running.
Typical Connections for Water Line Hot-Tapping
- There are various brands of tapping fittings with some being used as a branch and main pipe with the like diameters.
- Isolation valves.
- Hot tapping machine which includes the housing and the cutter.
Mechanical fittings can be used for building hot taps to be used on pipelines and mains. They must be designed for the specific pipeline’s operating pressure of the pipeline and must be suitable for the purpose. The reasons for using a hot-tap are many but are usually the preference for the nozzles to be installed during a turnaround.
The Operation of an HOT-TAP
The hot-tap process is made a continuous motion after the machine is started. The cut continues and the cutter passes through the wall of the pipe, usually via a manhole. Then an area of the pipe is removed. That section is referred to as a coupon, which is retained on one or more u-wires and then attached to the pilot bit.
After the cut has been made on the pipe, the hot-tap machine is turned off and the cutter retracts in the hot tap adapter. The valve then closes. Any pressure is bled out of the Tapping Adaptor’s inside, allowing the hot tap machine to be removed.