While sucker rods ensure consistent well production post-completion, the grade of steel that manufacturers use for making them ultimately determines their longevity. However, another vital key to their longevity, once they reach the operations phase, is the quality of their protection. Whether they are used onshore or offshore as critical rig components, ensuring that the threads remain damage-free is tantamount when it comes to well operations. This is where sucker rod caps and plugs play a key role in maintaining thread integrity, keeping them intact for safe operations.
How Sucker Rod Thread Damage Occurs
Most operations report failures due to thread corrosion and damage, especially in wells that have a high failure frequency rate. Sucker rods that sustain thread damage during transport or due to improper storage practices can ultimately lead to tensile failures.
Tensile failures occur when the load applied to the rig is more than the strength capacity of the rods. The weight bears down on a certain point on the sucker rod string and causes buckling. However, according to a Norris Report on Sucker Rod Failure Analysis and operational safety guidelines, loads should not exceed 90% of the sucker rod’s weight-bearing capacity. At the same time, if thread damage is present, the risk of failure is even greater.
Operational Failure Impacts Safety
Fatigue failures are also common in sucker rods, but they are the result of specific circumstances. Under most cases, fatigue occurs when there are small fractures in the threads. With time and use, the cracks eventually turn into major stress fatigue cracks. This happens especially when the pin shoulder and the coupling shoulder face separately.
Fortunately, operators can avoid fatigue failure and stress cracks simply by conducting regular visual inspections before they put rods to work. Likewise, as long as sucker rod caps and plugs are protecting the threads, the impact of damage is extremely low to none. If pumpers spot beach or ratchet marks beforehand, they can help prevent costly issues and fatal injuries.
Maintaining Safe Sucker Rod Pump Operations with Protective Sucker Rod Caps
Sucker rod thread integrity has a significant impact on the safety of well operations. Ensuring that they remain free from damage can prevent overall safety on oilfields and ensure optimum yield. The best way to protect your sucker rod threads is to cover them with high-quality caps and plugs. After all, working with damaged threads can lead to consequences that businesses may not easily recover from.