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Steam Distribution

Steam Distribution System Checklist


  • Correctly sized for pressure drop.
  • Velocity of steam in pipeline is less than 30 meters (100 feet) per second to prevent erosion.
  • Correct allowance has been made for pipe expansion at operating temperature.
  • Piping is adequately supported, guided and anchored.
  • Pipe slopes at a gentle downward angle with the flow of steam.
  • Eccentric reducers are used rather than concentric reducers.
  • Equipment supply lines are connected to the top of steam mains, not the bottom.
  • Isolation valves are installed to isolate equipment which is not in use.

Steam Trapping

  • Steam traps are installed at regular intervals (30 to 50 meters or 100 to 150 feet).
  • Steam traps are installed with correctly sized condensate collecting pockets.
  • Ends of steam mains have steam trap and air vent installed.
  • Steam traps are correctly sized for start-up and operating condensate loads.
  • Steam traps are installed upstream of isolation valves which are regularly closed.

Water Hammer

  • Determine if water hammer is experienced and eliminate it.
  • Check for damage caused by water hammer.


  • Heat insulation is installed for energy conservation.
  • Insulation is installed for personnel protection.
  • Insulation is of optimum thickness.
  • Insulation is weatherproofed and dry.
  • Insulation is in a good state of repair and is not damaged.
  • Foot bridges installed over pipe runs to prevent pedestrian damage to insulation.


  • No leaks exist, either to atmosphere or past traps into the condensate recovery system.