FAQs | Composite Pipe Supports | Corrosion Protection | APP

Pipe Support FAQs

For the past 24 years, we've been dedicated to helping our customers choose the best pipe supports, composite pipe shoes and wear pads for their piping systems. Over time we realized that although each piping project is unique in many ways, some of the questions remained the same. We compiled a list of what we think are the most common:

Which applications and industries have used APP products?

Our products have been used in just about every industrial application. Quite simply, with millions of our composite pipe supports in service, APP wear pads and pipe shoes have been used in every place within a piping system where a pipe intersects metal. We have an extensive list of clients and are in applications worldwide.

Where is Advanced Piping Products located?

APP is centrally located just outside Houston's 610 Loop, northwest of downtown, near the meeting of 290 and Beltway 8. We are in close proximity to many of the super majors' headquarters, the world's top engineering firms and within minutes of Houston's energy corridor.

What are the temperature ranges for your composite supports?

We have products that can handle the ultra low cryogenic temperature of LNG service to the extreme heat of heat exchanger piping. We offer a wide range of products to meet your needs.

Are your composite pipe supports UV resistant?

Yes, all of our composite materials are UV resistant. Much like refiners use additives in gasoline to improve its performance, we add UV inhibitors to our resin mix during manufacturing which are then equally distributed throughout our composite material. This ensures that the UV protection is consistent throughout our products.

Which products do you keep in stock?

We carry our ProTek Wear Pads, ProTek Pipe Shoes and ProTek U-Bolt for standard pipe sizes. We also inventory metallic hardware for pipe support applications.

Which composite wear pads do you stock?

Our goal is to make sure we can meet the demanding delivery times necessary to execute big and small projects in your industry. We keep 200-500 of each standard ProTek Composite Wear Pad size in-stock at all times so that we can help you get a major project started or fulfill the immediate needs of turnarounds.

What is your standard ProTek Composite Wear Pad size?

Our ProTek Composite Wear Pad dimensions are available in the same dimensions used for metallic wear pads. This allows our composite wear pads to be a direct replacement on specifications and requires only minimal change to existing pipe system designs. Most ProTek Composite Wear Pads are:

  • Thickness: 1/4”, which requires only minimal changes to the BOP (Bottom of Pipe) dimension
  • Length: 12” or 14” long to allow for ease of installation and protection during expansion and contraction

While the standard degrees of coverage were designed for pipe resting on an I-beam, actual degrees of coverage vary based on pipe size and application. However, the interaction between the pipe and I-beam is only a few degrees, and our standard is based on pipe size in order to cut down on material cost and help keep prices low.

How strong is your wear pad system?

One of our clients approached us with issues encountered on a 36” line filled with crude that was sitting on a metal beam. They wanted to know if our composite material would be able to handle this load. They asked us to perform a compressive test to prove it could handle 26,000 pounds. We tested our standard (1/4” thick, 30 degree coverage, 12” long) wear pad on a 10” diameter 1” thick pipe. We had to stop the test at 54,000 pounds when the massive pipe began to ovalize. However, the wear pad remained intact! Because our composite material is flexible and not brittle, the point of contact with the steel grew as the pipe ovalized. Thus, as the pipe ovalized, the increased footprint of our wear pad allowed for even greater support.

How strong is your epoxy?

Our epoxy boasts a shear strength of 2500 psi! It was developed for aerospace applications and is specifically formulated to bond lightweight composites to metallic materials. Our epoxy will effectively hold your pipe supports in place and it’s capable of withstanding large loads in multiple directions without losing adhesion integrity.

How long does it take to install a composite wear pad?

On average, a wear pad should take no more that five minutes to install using entry-level personnel. Our wear pad installation instructions are nine steps and one page long. Our two-part epoxy system is housed in a two-part cartridge that is placed in a two-part epoxy applicator and dispensed through a static mixing nozzle. Once again, we use this system to minimize the occurrence of human error. Most two-part epoxy systems use two containers and are mixed by hand using an exact mix ratio that can easily be mixed incorrectly. Our system is as easy as squeezing a caulking gun.

Can your composite pipe supports be installed on painted pipe?

Yes, this is one of the key features of our composite pipe support system. Our epoxy system is compatible with any cured coating surface, though a word of caution: our epoxy will sometimes bond to the paint better than the paint does to the pipe. If shortcuts were taken during the coating process, our epoxy has been known to remove the coating from the pipe. If the coating is properly applied this will not be an issue. When using our ProTek Composite Pipe Shoes no preparation is necessary since they are banded to the pipe.

Can your composite pipe supports be installed on a live (operating) line?

Yes, another key benefit of our composite pipe supports is that they can be installed in areas with very limited space with basic hand tools. Since our composite pipe supports do not require welding or the use of spark generating equipment they are safe and can save thousands in permitting, down-time and labor costs.

Are CryoTek Pipe Shoes insulated?

Yes, our CryoTek Pipe Shoes have polyurethane foam blocks encapsulated into the shoe base. Since the polyurethane foam does not have to bear load, we can use very low density foam which has better insulating properties than high density foams.

How are CryoTek Pipe Shoes installed?

Our CryoTek Pipe Shoes are installed using a combination of 6 heavy duty stainless steel bands and our APP EX-100 epoxy. No welding is required. We use this dual component system for added safety.

Can CryoTek Pipe Shoes be installed in the field?

Yes, our CryoTek shoes can be installed in the field. They weigh a fraction of what conventional metallic supports weigh and can be installed without the use of heavy machinery. To give you an idea of what our shoes weigh, a 32” pipe shoe weighs approximately 80 pounds and can be easily installed by two people.

Can CryoTek Pipe Shoes be stored outdoors?

Yes, our CryoTek shoes can be stored outdoors for an indefinite period of time. Unlike traditional cryogenic supports that have use exposed polyurethane foam that can become damaged, waterlogged, and deteriorates with UV exposure; our CryoTek shoes have no exposed foam and are water and UV resistant. This is a major advantage during large projects where warehousing space is limited.

Are CryoTek Pipe Shoes impact resistant?

Yes, our CryoTek shoes are impact resistant. One of our clients asked us if it would be ok to hit our shoe with a sledge hammer.

Can APP fabricate custom metallic pipe supports?

Yes, we can fabricate metallic pipe supports to fit your application. We can make supports for carbon steel, hot dipped galvanized, stainless steel and special alloys.

What special liners do you provide for your clamps and straps?

We supply multiple liners to suite your needs, such as: fluoropolymers for corrosion and wear resistance that provide a low coefficient a friction to reduce stress in piping systems. We can also offer vibration dampening liners for compressor applications and heavy duty elastomers for offshore use.

How are ProTek Composite Pipe Shoes installed?

Our ProTek Pipe Shoes are installed using 3 heavy duty stainless steel bands to secure the pipe and our SL-100 silicone sealant to ensure an air tight seal between the pipe shoe and the pipe. Since this is an elevated pipe support, it can easily be insulated after installation or can remain uninsulated if the line is at ambient temperature.

How does installation differ between composite pipe supports and metal pipe shoes?

Composite pipe supports require no welding to install — our products are either epoxied or banded to the pipe so installation does not require a certified welder or hot permit and the pipe can be an active line. Composite pipe supports weigh a fraction of what metal pipe shoes do and typically, only one person is needed for install and there is no need for a forklift or other lifting assistance. Thanks to the above reasons, it takes far less time and effort to install composite pipe supports which will save your budget and the bandwidth of your installers.