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How to Recognize the Signs Your Pipeline Is Leaking

How to Recognize the Signs Your Pipeline Is Leaking

Pipeline leaks are no joke. Learn how to recognize the signs your pipeline is leaking so you can stop and repair the issue as quickly as possible.

The oil and gas industry uses buried pipelines to transport products. While useful, these pipelines carry products that can prove incredibly dangerous when mishandled. That’s why it’s important to maintain your pipeline and prevent cracks, corrosion, and other damage that can lead to a leak. Of course, you can’t always catch problems before they occur. Learning how to recognize the signs your pipeline is leaking is a key part of quickly identifying and addressing issues. Help protect your infrastructure by watching out for these common signs.

Signs You Can See

Sight is often the easiest way to identify a pipeline problem. You might spot liquid pools or moist patches in the area surrounding your pipeline. If the pipeline carries oil, you might also see a sheen on nearby water surfaces. You should also inspect nearby water sources for bubbling, as this is another sign of a pipeline leak. Other signs include anomalies in the area, such as frosted patches of ground in warm weather or dead vegetation among otherwise healthy plants.

Signs You Can Hear

Pipeline leaks have less audible signs than visual, but there are still a few key indicators you can hear. Audible signs of a pipeline leak can range in volume depending on how big or small the leak is. You might hear a quiet hissing, a medium blowing sound, or a loud roar. These sounds usually indicate a gas leak, so be careful and take action quickly if you hear them.

Signs You Can Smell

Various unusual smells can also accompany a pipeline leak. If the pipeline carries natural gas, you might notice a rotten, sulfurous odor. Oil pipelines might give off the smell of petroleum during a leak. Other pipeline products are odorless, but might still have a hydrocarbon smell if they’re leaking. That said, smell is the least reliable indicator that a nearby pipeline is leaking.

Now that you know how to recognize the signs of oil and gas pipeline leakage, make sure your company is equipped to deal with the problem. Petersen Products has the high-quality line stops , pipe plugs, and other products you need to perform your pipeline maintenance. With the right equipment on your side, you can take care of leaks and other issues quickly, safely, and effectively.

The information may be used but with no warranty or liability. This information is believed to be correct but should always be double checked with alternative sources. Strictly adhere to and follow all applicable national and local regulations and practices.