Perforated tubes are an important component of many different systems and designs and can have a wide variety of industrial applications. Perforated tubing can be found in use throughout a multitude of different industries. Some of these industries include the food and beverage, chemical and energy, material development, irrigation, automotive, and construction industries.
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Applications of Perforated Tubes
Simply put, perforated tubing is a form of perforated metal or plastic that is formed into a tubular shape with multiple holes stamped into it. Perforated pipe is similar but usually made from different materials and nonmetals. Perforated tubing can be used for things like water or chemical filtration and treatment, drainage systems, and more. The type of perforated tubing that a customer may need will depend on what application it will serve. Perforated tubing and piping is manufactured in many different ways and can be put to a variety of uses.
Notable Types of Perforated Tubes and Pipes
Consumers should be educated about the different types of perforated tubing or piping available to them. Different projects require different types of perforated tubing and since there are a wide variety of perforated tubes and perforated tube retailers and vendors, it is helpful to know exactly which type of tubing will be most applicable to each individual operation. Below are a few types of perforated tubing and piping, as well as what applications they are usually put to.
- Perforated Stainless Steel Tubes
- Stainless steel is one of the most commonly used materials that perforated tubing is constructed of. This is because stainless steel is highly resistant to corrosion, and it doesn't rust or stain like other forms of steel such as carbon steel. It is a great choice when using perforated metal. Stainless steel contains chromium, which serves to protect the metal once it becomes oxygenated. Stainless steel is one of the most low-maintenance alloy metals. Some of the most commonly used stainless steel tubes are 304L and 316L stainless steel. This kind of perforated stainless steel tubing is usually made from T304 or T316 stainless steel sheets.
- There are three different classifications of stainless steel. These classifications have to do with the ability of the steel to harden during the manufacturing process. The three main types of stainless steel are austenitic, martensitic, and ferritic stainless steel. Each of these is respectively classified by the crystalline structures they are composed of.
- Austenitic Steels
- Can be hardened through a cold working process while most other stainless steel perforated tubing is hardened through a heating process. Austenitic steels can serve multiple applications throughout various industries. Austenitic steels are also non-magnetic for the most part. This metal is composed of 16% to 26% chromium and as high as 35% percent nickel. It is highly corrosion resistant. It can even resist corrosion from substances like sea water and some types of chemicals. To avoid carbide precipitation, it is recommended to use 316L austenitic steel when welding due to its lower carbon content. Austenitic steel is ideal for any parts that need to be extremely corrosion resistant. 321 Austenitic steel is stabilized using titanium which helps prevent carbide chromium formation. For this reason, 321 austenitic steel exhibits superior strength and is suited well for components that can not be easily annealed.
- Martensitic Steels
- Has the lowest alloy content of these three stainless steel types. This heat-treatable type of chromium is well suited for parts that will be subjected to high amounts of stress. This type of steel can contain both high and low amounts of carbon steel. It has type 401 iron compositions. It also contains 12% chromium and as high as 1.2% carbon. Perforated tubing built of this type of steel is tempered and hardened in most cases. This steel tubing is ideal for parts that need to be equally strong and corrosion resistant.
- Ferritic Steel
- Has the lowest chromium amount among these three stainless steel varieties. It generally has good corrosion and temperature resistance. It falls somewhere in the middle as far as strength goes. It is also less expensive in most cases than the other two varieties. 430 ferritic steel is a non-heat-treatable type of chromium used for its thermal conductivity and oxidation resistance with many industrial applications. 409 ferritic stainless steel is useful at elevated temperatures and corrosion resistant with a fair strength rating.
- Perforated Aluminum Tubes
- Lightweight and resistant to corrosion due to elements introduced during its construction processes. It gains a protective skin when exposed to oxygen in the atmosphere. It is significantly lighter than steel, nickel, and brass tubing. It comes with many surface finish options. It is also a highly reflective metal. Though in many cases protective coatings are not necessary for this type of tubing, different coatings can be added to improve corrosion resistance or else to improve things like color and strength. Aluminum that is pure tends to be highly resistant to things like chemicals or marine atmospheres. This tubing is also useful at low temperatures. Its strength actually increases when exposed to sub-zero temperatures. Even at these temperatures, these types of tubes retain ductility. At higher temperatures, such as temperatures above 400F, this tubing loses a fair amount of its strength. The most commonly used alloy is 3003-0 H14. It is stronger than 1100 while still being easily formable. It has good resistance to weathering and chemicals. This type of metal is good where extra strength is necessary. Another versatile form of this alloy is 5052-0 H32 and H34. It is recommended for applications that require high strength.
- Perforated Copper Tubes
- Has many useful applications. It is a malleable and highly conductive metal which boasts high thermal and electrical conductivity. This makes it useful for many reasons. It is also easy to shape and thus can fit many projects in ways that other kinds of metal tubing could not. This metal has antimicrobial properties that make it capable of withstanding different types of bacteria and mold. It can be a corrosive metal so there are some instances in which this kind of tubing would not be conducive to the success of a project.
- Perforated Pipe
- Allow for water to flow in either direction through holes or slots. Perforated piping can be made of a variety of materials and nonmetals including PVC, cement, or clay, but it is most commonly constructed of polyethylene. This type of tubing can be useful for underground drainage purposes. This is especially true in situations that require the use of outdoor drainage. This type of pipe can absorb liquid and help it to drain elsewhere. Some good applications for this type of perforated piping would include flooding beneath houses or other structures, draining systems related to pools, and different forms of landscaping and irrigation for trees and other plants. Perforated pipes are also commonly used for vehicle silencers. They are put in the vehicle's filtering tank to help reduce engine noise and absorb different pollutants.
Manufacturing Process of Perforated Tubes
Many manufacturers strive to continuously improve their perforated tubing design and construction processes. There are many different ways to make perforated tubing. Perforated pipes and tubing can be made using welded or lock seam methods. Each construction process depends on which materials the tubing will be made of and what purpose it will ultimately serve. Perforated tubing can be made in bulk to fit various applications or custom made for specific designs.
Factors to Consider When Purchasing Perforated Tubes
When ordering perforated tubing from a vendor, consumers should consider a few factors. What material will they want their tubing made of? What specific thickness and gauge are they going to need? What will the overall length of the tubing end up being? What perforation configuration will best suit their purposes? (For instance, do they prefer straight or staggered perforation and do they want holes or slots?) What slot shape will they need their tubes to fit into? What perforation spacing would be best? Would they like the end types of their tubes finished or unfinished? All of these factors contribute to what construction processes will be used.
A good vendor and a premium product can prove critical to the success of a project. Consumers should carefully consider their options before making a purchase. They should speak to the retailer of their choosing to ensure that they are getting a quality product that will suit their needs as an individual. Being knowledgeable about which perforated tubing product they are interested in purchasing can help the process go much more smoothly for shoppers. In addition to this, choosing a quality product can positively impact the success of a job or design in the long and short-term. Companies and individuals can benefit from learning as much as possible about each product-type before purchasing perforated tubing from a vendor or custom perforated metal manufacturer.