5 Mistakes to Avoid when Labeling Pipes
Avoid Mistakes when Labeling Pipes
While labeling pipes may seem like a simple job, there are actually a lot of things that can go wrong. Sometimes, these mistakes can make it so the pipe labels aren’t as effective, and can even cause confusion. To help ensure you are labeling pipes properly, look at the following common mistakes, and how to avoid them.
Mistake #1 – Not Following Best Practices
When it comes to labeling pipes, there are quite a few industry best practices that you should follow. Some of them are actually regulated by OSHA or other agencies, but many of them are just informal standards that have been adopted across the industry.
Things like the colors of the labels corresponding to what the pipe contains, for example, can make it much easier to identify what is in a pipe with just a glance. Other best practices cover things like the size of the lettering on the labels, where they are placed and much more.
Mistake #2 – Using Cheap Labels
Some companies try to save money by labeling their pipes with cheap labels. While this might save a few dollars up front, it will actually end up costing more in the long run. This is because they will end up peeling off or fading far more quickly, so they will have to get replaced more often.
Using high quality vinyl labels, or other materials made specifically for piping is a much more economical option in the long run.
Mistake #3 – Ordering Custom Labels
Custom labels are an excellent option when it comes to labeling pipes. They can help improve safety by providing the exact information that is needed for each pipe. The problem, however, is that ordering custom labels from a third party printer is expensive and often takes a long time to complete.
A growing number of facilities are learning that it is much faster, easier and even more affordable to purchase their own industrial label printer, so they can create the custom labels they need right on site. Over time, this ends up saving money and providing many other benefits as well.
Mistake #4 – Improper Precautions while Labeling Pipes
Most pipes in a facility are going to be located high up above the floor so that they are out of the way. This means that when labeling them, you will either have to be up on a tall latter, or on some type of mechanical lift system. Some facilities also have a catwalk setup in the rafters, but even still it can be dangerous if you need to lean over in order to label a pipe.
Whenever working at heights, you need to make sure to take the proper precautions for fall prevention. This could be using a harness system, or even just making sure you never lean over to reach a pipe. Unfortunately, thousands of people are hurt each year in fall accidents at work, almost all of which could be prevented with proper precautions.
Mistake #5 – Failing to Label Pipes
The biggest mistake that many facilities make when it comes to labeling is not doing it at all. Many facilities neglect this important task, since it may seem like it doesn’t provide any real benefits. Keep in mind, however, that eventually there will be people who have to work on these pipes, and not knowing what is flowing through them can be very dangerous.
In addition, when there is an emergency, it is often essential for emergency responders to be able to quickly identify the cause of the problem. Having the proper labeling on pipes can make that process go much more quickly.
Label Pipes the Correct Way
With that in mind, make sure you always avoid the above five common mistakes when labeling pipes. Taking the time to ensure it is done properly the first time will help to prevent problems long into the future.