Standard Piping Procedures


In most situations, proper installation of a steam trap requires adherence to the following piping procedures.

Clean the Drip Line


Provide Gravity Drainage
Blow the line down with steam or compressed air to clean the drip line. Pitch return lines down. Low spots reduce the pressure differential.

 

Install Drip Legs


Install Unions
Make sure all drip legs are of sufficient height to provide a static head that will push condensate through the trap when the system is shut down. Measure the height H as shown. Divide H (in inches) by 28 to get the static head in psi. Divide H (in meters) by 10 to get the static head in bar. Unions provide a simple means for removing traps from a system for repair or replacement. If one union is used, locate it downstream from the trap. A trap can be removed between the union and the next connection point forward (shutoff valve, strainer or drip leg). If two unions are used, place them either at right angles or parallel. Avoid placing two unions in-line in either horizontal or vertical piping. Two unions in-line make it difficult to separate the trap from the rest of the system if the lines are well anchored.

 

Standardize Connections


Do Not Install Trap By-passes
If your facility has a number of traps that are identical in size and type, regardless of application, a great deal of downtime can be avoided by standardizing connections. Use the same length inlet and outlet nipples on all traps and supply them with the same fittings, including unions. Keep a standby trap with identical fittings as a spare. Whenever a trap tests poorly, the unions can be loosened, the standby trap substituted, and the original taken in for repair. A by-pass valve that is inadvertently left open defeats the function of the steam trap. If continuous service is necessary, place a standby trap in parallel with the primary trap.




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