Reliability Guidelines for Flexible Hoses

The Reliability Guidelines for Flexible Hoses describes the life cycle best practices for maintaining and improving the reliability and safety of flexible chemical process hose applications. The focus of these Guidelines is on a hose management program that encompasses Mechanical Integrity and Quality Assurance (MIQA) principles for hose applications, such as establishing and documenting the design basis for a hose, procurement practices including auditing of suppliers, tagging and labelling, inspection/replacement decision making, in-service inspection and testing, and common failure modes, to name a few examples.

There are no consensus industry codes or standards that govern flexible hoses, especially across the broad range of the life cycle of a hose as described within this document. Numerous references exist in supplier catalogues and industry standards regarding relevant topics such as (but not limited to) design, fabrication, and installation and handling. References to existing documents will be made in these Guidelines where appropriate, to avoid repetition.

The extent of implementation of these principles should be defined by the user, based on the criticality of the hose application. Experience has demonstrated that a uniform implementation of these best practices in an operating facility for all hose applications results in an effective hose management program, and less chance for omitting an important program element. Examples of such applications are loading/unloading and transfer hoses, jumper hoses in process installations, laboratory and bottle hoses, hoses used as permanent installations that are not considered expansion joints, and to some extent utility hoses.

These Guidelines are not intended to create any unique standard for the use of flexible hoses in particular services or structures, and other practices could well be perfectly adequate as part of an overall effective flexible hose program.