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Piping Support Design in Piping Engineering

Updated: Feb 6, 2021

A pipe support is a device designed to carry the weight of the pipe. It is designed in a such a way to transfer the load from a pipe to the supporting structures. The load includes the weight of the pipe, the content that the pipe carries, all the pipe fittings attached to pipe, and the pipe covering such as insulation.

The major factors that we consider for Piping design support are

  • Pressure loss effect on production

  • Stress level consideration

  • Support and anchor effect

  • Parallel expansion capacity

  • Stability, Easy maintenance

  • Installation cost

The four main functions of a pipe support are: to guide, to anchor, to absorb shock and to support specified load. Pipe supports used in high or low temperature applications may contain insulation materials. The overall design configuration of a pipe support assembly is dependent on the loading and operating conditions.

As we are the leaders of piping stress engineering services in UAE, Universal Engineering Services provide plausible solutions on the basis of design experience in Pipe stress analysis services over a decade. Universal Engineering Services ca do Stress analysis of piping in detail and Pipe support calculation. Chilled water piping stress analysis is one of the highlights of Universal Engineering services.

Pipe supports used in high or low temperature applications may also contain insulation materials. The overall design configuration of a pipe support assembly is dependent on the loading / operating conditions and pipe support location.

Problems occur due to inadequate piping system support. The sources of these problems could be Flange joints, Slumping of pipes, Vibration, Extreme movement, Greater deflection, Line overstress and equipment nozzle overload.

Types of pipe supports


Hangers are vertical pipe support that incorporates a rod. It may be a rigid, variable spring or constant support hanger. Rod hangers or pipe hangers attaches to the pipe by a U bolt, a clevis, a pipe clamp etc.


A pipe anchor is a rigid support that restricts movement in all three orthogonal directions and all three rotational directions. This usually is a welded stanchion that is welded or bolted to steel or concrete.


When total restriction of pipe movement is not required, pipe guides are used. Pipe guides confine movement along the pipe's lineal axis. In piping terms this is called a sliding point. They are used primarily to maintain proper line spacing in a pipe rack and they prevent lateral or sideway movement. Unlike the pipe anchor which is welded to the pipe and steel structure, the guide allows pipe to slide lengthwise between two angle shapes. When the pipe is supported on shoes, the angle shapes are positioned on either side of the shoe.


U bolt is a u shaped bolt with two threaded arms. There are many other uses of U bolts but in pipe supports it is often used with some other supports like hangers, guides etc.. It mainly restricts pipe against pulling action


The pipe work system must be sufficiently flexible to accommodate the movements of the components as they expand. Steam or condensate pipe lines usually expand thermally due

to the high temperature. Roller supports are ideal methods for supporting pipes, at the

same time allowing them to move in two directions.

Girder/beam clamps

They are used to clamp the pipe with a beam or girder. They are not suitable for heavy pr bulky piping system.

Pipe supports are fabricated from a variety of materials including structural steel, carbon steel, stainless steel, galvanized steel, aluminum, ductile iron and FRP composites. Most pipe supports are coated to protect against moisture and corrosion.

Points to ponder on piping support design:

A splendid piping support design and adept selection of support material helps to improve the quality of piping. ASME standards are also considered to ensure proper piping support.

1. Identification and tagging:

For identification piping supports in the drawing should be tagged properly. Organizations like ours which specializes in piping engineering have a standard with detailed specifications and nomenclature. Mainly length, height and range of the pipe are considered through this.

2. Pipe Support Register:

After tagging all the pipe supports, you have to list all standard, special and temporary pipe supports in the index drawing.

3. Fabrication Isometrics:

In order to prepare the piping fabrication isometrics, you must include the details of Piping material, Pipe support tags, Pipe size quantity, Erection materials that would be field fitted.

4. Support Types and Material:

The support types used are snubbers, spring hangers and other devices that the stress engineer sees important for piping support design. They helps in extreme weather conditions and extreme temperatures. Right support materials can only give the needed result. For instance braces are used to protect branches and the absence of braces causes vibration in future.

Universal Engineering’s professional and industrial piping design engineering services wing offers design and detail engineering services provide canvas for piping, 3D design, pipe engineering services, Stress analysis of piping, structural design, pipe supporting structure analysis, design calculations, FEA, and spotless on design management.

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