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Industry and Regulatory Changes in Offshore Operations

Industry and Regulatory Changes in Offshore Operations

On May 13, 2016, the offshore oil and ga...

Strategies for Successful SIS Valve Diagnostic Implementation

Strategies for Successful SIS Valve Diagnostic Implementation

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Industry Headlines

MRC Global Expands Service to Chemours in the U.S. Gulf Coast

1 DAY AGO

MRC Global Inc. announced that its subsidiary, MRC Global (US) Inc., has been awarded an agreement to be the primary provider of pipe, valve, fitting (PVF) products and services to all U.S. locations of The Chemours Company. The five-year agreement added the Gulf Coast region and also includes valve a...

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Sunbelt Supply Opens Shanghai Valve and Automation Center

4 DAYS AGO

Sunbelt Supply celebrated the grand opening of its new Valve and Automation Center with an open house on May 12, 2016 in Shanghai, China. The open house welcomed 80 customers and manufacturers. Attendees toured the newly stocked warehouse and automation center .

Sunbelt Supply Shanghai is a joint ventu...

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Gulf Coast Petrochemical Boom Contributing to Global Plastics Glut

8 HOURS AGO

A surge in new plastics chemical capacity coming from low-cost producers in North America (specifically the U.S. Gulf Coast), the Middle East and China is driving the global market for key plastics polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) to oversupply, which will pressure margins for producers and ...

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U.S. Chemical Production Stalled in April

1 DAY AGO

According to the American Chemistry Council (ACC), the U.S. Chemical Production Regional Index (U.S. CPRI) was flat in April , following a 0.4% gain in March, and a 0.1% decline in February, as measured on a three-month moving average (3MMA). In April, the Gulf Coast was the only region to post a smal...

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Markit PMI Shows U.S. Manufacturers Stagnating in May

8 HOURS AGO

The U.S. manufacturing sector crept closer to stagnation in May, with the seasonally adjusted Markit Flash U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) registering only slightly above the neutral 50.0 mark at 50.5. This was down from 50.8 in April and signaled only a marginal improvement...

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Why Innovation is the Key to U.S. Manufacturing Growth

1 DAY AGO

Manufacturing may be facing some headwinds, but it’s undeniably in the midst of a technological renaissance that is transforming the look, systems and processes of the modern factory. Despite the risks — and despite recent history — industrial manufacturing companies cannot afford ...

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Preventive Maintenance and Repair for Sleeved Plug Valves

Preventive maintenance and repair for valves is an important part of keeping operations running smoothly and efficiently. For the sleeved plug valve (SPV), such maintenance is minimal—simply requiring an occasional adjustment to prevent both external and internal leakage in certain applications. The repair process for SPVs can be more extensive—inspection of parts and use of proper replacement parts are vital for ensuring a safe, successful overhaul. Additionally, root cause failure diagnosis is a critical part of this process. This is because the damage detected is the best indicator of the type of change to the valve or modification to the process that, if made, will extend the useful life of the valve.

 


PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE

If the SPV is operated on a regular basis for standard applications and no leaks are present, preventive maintenance is unnecessary. SPVs should be cycled, however, at least once every three months to minimize the need for maintenance and to ensure proper valve operation. The only potential maintenance needed for this valve is a simple plug adjustment in response to inline or top seal leakage. A plug adjustment is performed by simply tightening the adjustment screws located in the valve cover or bonnet. The adjustment procedure involves tightening each of the screws a quarter turn, cycling the valve two to three times, then checking to see if the leak has been eliminated. This procedure can be performed continuously until the leak is eliminated or the adjustment screws bottom out. If the screws bottom out before the leak is eliminated, the valve will need to be repaired or replaced.

For atypical applications, such as low temperature (below the freezing point), a plug adjustment should be made after the valve is installed and has reached operating temperature. This is recommended because cold temperatures can affect the sealing properties of the sleeve, which could increase the risk of leaks. To combat this risk, valve users should adjust the valve plug to ensure the correct amount of compression is applied to the sleeve to achieve a proper seal. Similarly, for high-cycle applications (i.e., cycling once per minute), a monthly minimal plug adjustment is recommended to compensate for wear on the sleeve.


REPAIR

If a valve experiences leakage that cannot be adjusted out, it will need to be repaired or replaced (with a required cost analysis). Before a repair occurs, the valve must be disassembled and completely decontaminated according to plant requirements, as well as applicable hazardous materials-handling regulations to ensure repair personnel safety.

When repairing an SPV, the sleeve and all stem/cover seals must be replaced. It also is highly recommended that repair parts be factory, original equipment manufacturer parts to ensure continued integrity of the valve’s sealing properties.

Once the valve is disassembled, the body, plug and cover need to be inspected closely. Any defects on sealing surfaces will require replacement of that component. It is important to pay particular attention to the plug taper and stem, the body internal areas and the seal surface of the valve cover. Scratches or nicks on these surfaces could result in a leak path. All other machined surfaces should be inspected for signs of wear, scratches, burrs, corrosion or other damage. Mechanical or corrosive damage indicates the damaged part should be replaced.


FAILURE DIAGNOSIS

Failure diagnosis is a critical step in the rebuild process. Any damage detected can indicate the need for changes to processes or equipment. More specifically, problems associated with cavitations, high velocities, high-pressure drops, throttling and solids/slurries can be identified and corrected based on the specific signs of damage.

Damage from cavitation usually is detected on the downstream portions of the metal body. To remedy problems, replace the valve with a low-pressure drop/high-flow capacity valve or alter the process to reduce the pressure drop.

A high-velocity flow can damage the sealing surfaces and cause erosive damage to the plug, as well as dramatic wear damage to the sleeve. To ­minimize this, a full port plug valve should be used to allow more flow and reduce the velocity.

Tearing or ripping of the sleeve can indicate high-pressure drop across a valve. To combat this, a full port valve or installing other devices in the piping systems (i.e., orifice plate) to absorb the impact of the high pressure drop is recommended.

If a standard sleeved plug valve is used for a throttling application, the sleeve is exposed to the flowing media, which can result in damage. In such throttling applications, a cage control design should be used because the cage will protect the sleeve from direct impingement of the flow media.

Solids or slurries can cause abrasive or erosive damage on the body or body flow passage. This can indicate the wrong valve is in use. To solve this issue, a full port plug valve or another suitable alternative is recommended to limit flow restrictions.

The condition of the sleeve of a failed valve is usually the best indicator of what is occurring in the valve itself. If it appears the sleeve has cold flowed into the waterway, the application temperature should be reviewed, and a different sleeve with higher temperature capabilities might be used. If the sleeve has apparent erosion from aggressive media such as a slurry, a harder sleeve material could be used.

In sum, in normal applications, preventive maintenance for a sleeved plug valve is unnecessary unless a leak is detected. If used in the right applications and cycled regularly, SPVs require no periodic adjustments, lubrication or recalibration. For atypical applications, such as low temperature or high cycle, minimal plug adjustments may be necessary to protect against leakage. To minimize future repairs and downtime, the repair and failure diagnosis process is important in determining whether or not adjustments or improvements should be made to the application process, whether changes to equipment are called for, or both.


Rob Enneking is sleeved plug valve business ­manager – Americas, CRANE ChemPharma Flow Solutions, Xomox. Reach him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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