What symbols should be put on a pipe label?

When labeling pipes in the workplace it is important to be able to convey as much information as possible with a limited amount of space. There are a variety of strategies used to accomplish this goal including using set color combinations, the right size of text, and even using symbols. The symbols used on pipe markings need to follow specific standards in order to ensure everyone who views them will know exactly what they mean.

General Symbols

The first type of symbols that are used on pipe markings are the standard examples that can be seen in many places. For example, using an arrow to indicate the direction of flow within the pipe is very common. For toxic chemicals, a hazard symbol of a skull and crossbones symbol could be used. There are other examples of these common symbols that can be used on pipe markings, though they aren’t quite as common on pipe markings as in other places in the facility.

Pipe Marking Specific Symbols

Another set of symbols that are commonly used are designed specifically for pipes in the workplace. These are simple symbols made just from lines and basic geometric shapes to help convey a message either about the direction of the pipe they are on, or its contents.

For example, there are several standard symbols that can be used when the pipes will be changing direction. The different symbols will indicate whether the pipes will be splitting off into multiple directions, turning on a 45-degree bend, a 90-degree bend, running into a capped or spigot end, or something else.

There are also symbols to indicate when a pipe is going to be flowing into a valve, and what type of valve it is. These symbols can indicate a gate valve, float valve, flanged gate valve, globe valve, welded safety valve, diaphragm valve with a screw joint, or a welded globe valve. These are the most common examples for valve symbols, but there are others as well.

Training Employees

With so many different types of symbols available to be used on pipe markings, it is important to ensure employees know what each one means. When planning out a pipe marking strategy in any facility, the training and education of employees is one of the most important factors to consider.


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