Why Spray Foam is the Best Form of Trench Breaking

Many people don’t think of insulation on a regular basis, but it is a $20 billion industry in the United States. In order to prevent costly problems due to soil erosion, engineers and contractors have long been using sandbags around pipes or oil and gas pipelines. Although using sandbags was previously the standard, there are many drawbacks. For this reason, professionals are turning to spray foam instead of sandbags as trench breakers.

Problems With Sandbags

Sandbags can be costly, time-consuming and unreliable, particularly in extreme climates or those susceptible to large amounts of rain. When sandbagging, workers have to acquire dirt, fill the sandbags and go through the labor-intensive process of putting them into place. Because they don’t actually bond to the dirt or trench, sandbags can shift out of place, particularly when placed on steep hills. Sandbags are rough and can actually be abrasive to the pipeline. In addition, sandbags decompose over time.

Spray Foam Alternative

When compared to sandbagging, spray foam has an extremely fast application. Workers often don’t even need to actually be inside of the trench to apply the spray foam. It also has the unmatched ability to conform to the area around it, meaning it can be applied in any size trench. After a short period of time, the foam bonds to the dirt and area around it, so that it won’t shift.

Cost of Washouts

When soil erodes due to a pipeline trench washing out, it can be incredibly costly to fix. In this instance, engineers need to reassess the pipeline and pipe coatings to ensure there isn’t any damage to the pipes themselves. They would then need to haul in new fill dirt and go through the entire process of adding breakers again. It makes much more sense to use the most reliable medium the first time.

Spray foam is the best alternative to the problems with traditional sandbags. It is a quicker and more reliable way to protect pipelines from erosion. When viewing the cost of replacement breakers, most people would agree that sandbagging isn’t worth the risk.