Innovative HDPE Pipe Solutions Speed Replacement of Storm-Damaged Culvert in Houston

Erica Bender, Texas Contractor on May 12, 2020

Governments, utilities and contractors often rely on conventional products they are familiar with to build, repair, or replace underground pipe infrastructure. However, to keep pace with growing population demands and support resilient building practices, many decision-makers are seeking advanced, forward-thinking solutions to ensure systems run optimally for as long as possible.

One innovative option is high-density polyethylene (HDPE), a flexible plastic material valued for its durability, versatility and longevity. HDPE pipe is normally joined together by heat fusion, making it exceptionally strong yet lightweight and virtually leak-free. This material is also lauded for its corrosion and chemical resistance, weatherability, low maintenance, ease of installation and eco-friendliness.

While HDPE has been on the global market for decades – and utilized by a broad range of sectors including municipal, industrial, marine, mining and agricultural – certain countries have been slower to adopt this robust solution proven to outperform traditional materials such as concrete, fiberglass, and corrugated metal in large-diameter pipe applications. In the United States, HDPE pipe is commonly used for conduits to transport natural gas and chemicals. Larger HDPE pipes, up to 54 inches, are often seen in high-pressure water pipelines. In recent years the product has gained traction in other markets (e.g., stormwater/wastewater, agricultural, highway construction), and in larger sizes, due to a growing awareness about its unique advantages.

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