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How to use the flange connection correctly


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What is flange connection?

Flange connection is to fix two pipes, pipe fittings or equipment on a flange, and between
the two flanges, with flange pads, bolted together to complete the connection. . Some
fittings and equipment have their own flanges and are also flanged. Flange connection is
an important connection method for pipeline construction. The flange connection is easy
to use and can withstand large pressures. In industrial pipes, in the home, the pipe
diameter is small and low pressure, and the flange connection is not visible. If you are in a
boiler room or production site, there are flanged pipes and equipment everywhere.

Types of flanges:

 Blind Flanges
 Lap Joint Flanges
 Orifice Flanges
 Other Flanges
 Plate Flanges
 Ring Type Joint Flanges

 Slip-on Flanges
 Socket Weld Flanges
 Spacer Ring / Spade Flanges
 Spectacle Blind Flanges
 Threaded Flanges
 Welding Neck Flanges

Generally low-pressure small-diameter wire-bonding flanges, high-pressure and

low-pressure large-diameter welded flanges, the thickness of the flanges of different
pressures and the diameter and number of connecting bolts are different.
Depending on the grade of pressure, the flange pads are also available in different
materials, from low pressure asbestos pads, high pressure asbestos pads and PTFE pads
to metal pads.
The flange connection is easy to use and can withstand large pressures.

In industrial pipes, the use of flange connections is very extensive, such as in the indoor
fire hydrant water supply system, the connection of various valves and pipes such as
butterfly valves, gate valves and check valves.

Materials for Flanges

Pipe flanges are manufactured in all the different materials like stainless steel, cast iron,
aluminium, brass, bronze, plastic etc. but the most used material is forged carbon steel
and have machined surfaces.
In addition, flanges, like fittings and pipes, for specific purposes sometimes internally
equipped with layers of materials of a completely different quality as the flanges
themselves, which are “lined flanges”.
The material of a flange, is basically set during the choice of the pipe, in most cases, a
flange is of the same material as the pipe.
All flanges, discussed on this website fall under the ASME en ASTM standards, unless
otherwise indicated. ASME B16.5 describes dimensions, dimensional tolerances etc. and
ASTM the different material qualities.

Flange connection methods:

Flange connection methods can generally be divided into five types: flat welding, butt
welding, socket welding, loose sleeves, and threads.
The first four are elaborated below:
1. Flat welding: only welding the outer layer, no need to weld the inner layer; generally

used in medium and low pressure pipelines, the nominal pressure of the pipeline is lower
than 0.25MPa. There are three kinds of sealing surfaces for flat welding flanges, which
are smooth, concave and convex, and grooved. Among them, the smooth application is
the most widely used, and the price is affordable and cost-effective.
2. Butt welding: The inner and outer layers of the flange should be welded. Generally used
in medium and high pressure pipelines, the nominal pressure of the pipeline is between
0.25 and 2.5 MPa. The sealing surface of the welding flange connection method is
concave-convex, and the installation is complicated, so the labor cost, the installation
method, and the auxiliary material cost are relatively high.
3. Socket welding: generally used in pipes with nominal pressure less than or equal to
10.0MPa and nominal diameter less than or equal to 40mm.
4. Loose sleeves: Generally used in pipelines where the pressure is not high but the
medium is corrosive, so the flanges are highly resistant to corrosion and the materials are
mostly stainless steel.
This connection is mainly used for the connection of cast iron pipes, rubber-lined pipes,
non-ferrous metal pipes and flange valves, and the connection between process
equipment and flanges is also flanged.
Features of the connection method:
The main features of the flange connection are easy disassembly, high strength and good
sealing performance. When installing the flange, the two flanges are required to be
parallel, the sealing surface of the flange should not be damaged, and it should be
cleaned. Flange gaskets should be selected according to design regulations.

Flange connection process:

First, the connection between the flange and the pipe must meet the following

1. The center of the pipe and flange should be on the same horizontal line.
2. The sealing surface of the pipe center and the flange is 90 degrees vertical.
3. The position of the flange bolts on the pipe should be consistent.
Second, the pad flange gasket, the requirements are as follows:
1. In the same pipe, the gaskets with the same pressure should be the same, so that they
can be exchanged later.
2. For pipes with rubber sheets, the gaskets are also preferably rubber, such as water
3, the selection principle of the gasket is: as close as possible to the small width selection,
which is the principle that should be followed in the premise that the gasket will not be
Third, the connection flange
1. Check the specifications of the flanges, bolts and gaskets to meet the requirements.
2, the sealing surface should be kept smooth and tidy, no burrs.
3. The thread of the bolt should be complete and there should be no defects. The fitting
should be natural.
4, the texture of the gasket should be flexible, not easy to aging, the surface is not
damaged, wrinkles, scratches and other defects.
5. Before assembling the flange, clean the flange to remove oil, dust, rust and other debris,
and clean the seal line.
Fourth, the assembly flange
1. The flange sealing surface is perpendicular to the center of the pipe.
2. Bolts of the same specifications are installed in the same direction.
3. The flange installation position on the branch pipe should be more than 100 mm from
the outer wall surface of the riser, and the distance from the wall of the building should be
200 mm or more.

4. Do not bury the flange directly in the ground, it is easy to be corroded. If it must be
buried underground, it must be treated with anti-corrosion treatment.

Source: China Flanges Manufacturer – Yaang Pipe Industry Co., Limited


(Yaang Pipe Industry is a leading manufacturer and supplier of nickel alloy and stainless
steel products, including Super Duplex Stainless Steel Flanges, Stainless Steel Flanges,
Stainless Steel Pipe Fittings, Stainless Steel Pipe. Yaang products are widely used in
Shipbuilding, Nuclear power, Marine engineering, Petroleum, Chemical, Mining, Sewage
treatment, Natural gas and Pressure vessels and other industries.)

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Please notice that you might be interested in the other technical articles we’ve published:


• Where to get high quality blind flanges

• Where to get high quality orifice flanges

• Where to get high quality lap joint flanges

• Where to get high quality plate flanges

• Where to get high quality slip on flanges

• Where to get high quality ring type joint flanges

• How to Install a Slip on Flange