Pipe Insulation Tool
As the weather is getting colder, WRAS has released a new ‘Pipe insulation Tool’ app to help designers and installers calculate minimum insulation requirements for every installation. The app is free to download or use on the WRAS website without the need for any specialist applications.
The tool enables users to calculate how many hours protection from freezing water pipes insulation will offer when there is no water demand (i.e. no water is being drawn through pipework). The calculator has been designed to indicate when 12 hours protection has been provided and within the tool, ‘freezing’ is defined as a maximum of 50% ice formation. Users will need information on; the pipe size and materials it is made from; climatic and water supply temperatures at the location where the pipe is to be installed; and information on the insulation which is planned to be used.
However, in situations where there will be no water demand for periods greater than 12 hours; or where there is likely to be no positive change to the surrounding conditions after 12 hours (i.e. increase in the ambient temperature), users can still use the tool but they should determine the appropriate “total hours” protection. In addition consideration should be given to the viability of improving the levels of insulation, using additional protection measures such as trace heating, or consider relocating the plumbing system to a less exposed area.
WRAS has also been able to make the tool available as an app for mobile devices, allowing it to be used when there is no internet connection. It is available for the most common operating systems and is available for smart phones and tablets running Apple’s iOS or Google’s android software. It is also available for Microsoft’s mobile phone software using Windows 8 onwards. These are now available to be downloaded free from the three app stores - see links below.