An oil and gas plant is a complex industrial marvel with thousands of miles of running pipes interconnected through vital fittings. Each piping system may contain hundreds of components, including straight lines, elbows, flanges, gaskets, flow meters, pressure taps, thermowells, and much more. Flanges are a critical part of the pipeline infrastructure, making them the second most common joining method after welding.
What are Blind Pipe Flanges?
Blind flanges are pipe fittings that blank discs with a bolt hole. They are flanges without a center bore and are available in flat-faced or raised-face styles. Unlike most stainless steel flange fittings that seek to reduce interruptions inflow, the blind types blank off pipe ends. The design allows the flanges to seal the end of the pipe and prevent flow.
Most blind pipe flanges are bolted in place rather than welded. This makes it easier to access the blanked-off pipe ends during inspections and maintenance. Additionally, installing a piping system with blind flanges with gaskets provides an access point that industries can use as a utility hole to the vessel.
Choosing The Right Flanges to Blank Off Pipe Ends
Flange distributors stock different types of blind flanges for use in the petrochemical industries. Manufacturers can produce flanges that match dimensions for slip-on or weld fittings. You can also custom machine the flanges to fit any other specifications that you may need.
Before placing your order for flanges to blank off pipe ends, factor in the material used, flange dimensions, pressure, temperature class, and appropriate features to meet your needs. Here is a more detailed look.
1. Material Used
The best blind flanges may need to match the material and dimensions determined by the standard you use for your intended application. Typically, the flange material you use is similar to the connecting material to minimize corrosion effects. The most commonly used materials are steel and stainless steel.
2. Pressure and Temperature Classification
The ASME B16.5 standard for flanges indicates the right temperature and pressure rating for your fittings. ASME classifications for flat-faced flanges are Class 125 and Class 250. The raised face styles may have pressure classes from Class 150, Class 300, Class 600, Class 900, and Class 1500.
3. Flange Dimensions
You may need to identify the flange sizes that align with the dimensional standards for your application. The flange to blank off pipe ends in your industrial piping system needs to be thick enough to withstand the pressure in your system. The center of the solid face may be thicker than standard flanges. However, the flanges do not have to be unnecessarily unwieldy. Choose the minimum thickness that can withstand the largest pressure rating for your class.
Your project may require a specific set of blind flanges that meet your corrosion resistance and application needs. You can discuss with your fitting distributor the best way to machine your flanges for optimum performance.
Blind flanges are a critical part of any piping system used to blind off pipe ends. You may need to figure out the industry standard to use to determine the dimensions, materials, and pressure and temperature class to use. To place an order for blind flange fittings, reach out to Lynco Flange.