If you’re in the market for an oil pipe, there are probably many questions running through your mind. You may have a wide variety of choices to consider. Do you buy older used pipe at a cheaper price, or should you invest in a brand new pipe for your project?
Choosing which kind of pipe to go with might seem confusing at first, but once you have weighed the pros and cons of each, the decision may not be as difficult as you think. While each project can be different, some common factors to consider can help you decide.
Does the Age of the Pipe Matter?
It is of the general opinion that older pipes are more susceptible to corrosion, which can be a problem. However, a more significant reason for the difference between old and new is how the manufacturing process changed. Like everything else, pipe manufacturing processes have changed over the years, and it is imperative to understand how this can impact the quality of the pipe.
Around the mid-90s, manufacturers started implementing a new process for producing pipes called the “continuous mandrel” method. This method required piercing a hot metal cylinder and inserting a solid bar through the middle. It ensured that the pipe maintained a consistent diameter throughout its length. Once fully formed, shaving down the outer edge to the preferred thickness is all that is needed.
Benefits of This New Pipe Method:
This method meant that new pipes were:
- built to within thousandths of an inch thickness
- formed accurately with less material
- Costs could be kept low
With this technique, older pipes were thicker, allowing them more durability. They were able to withstand more corrosion over time without the risk of compromising the inner wall.
Other Factors to Consider
The cost of using used pipes may be attractive at first glance. If you’re working on a tight budget, you might be tempted to overlook other equally important factors. Old pipes need to be inspected to make sure they are still within acceptable tolerance levels. Before deciding on buying any old pipe, check for the following:
- The extent of corrosion
- The condition of the material
- The cost of recoating if needed
- Regular inspections and maintenance
- The higher risk of leaking
What About New Pipe?
Of course, the new pipe will last longer, but don’t let the shiny metal fool you. In general, these new pipes will be more expensive, but you can rest easy knowing you won’t have to worry about any:
Which is Better?
When choosing your oil field pipe, don’t allow money to be the sole deciding factor. The bottom line, you will always have to pay for what you get. The real question is whether you want to pay everything upfront with old pipes or pay later with new ones. If you’re still undecided, it may be advisable to talk to an expert to walk you through the many factors that can impact your project.