Composite hoses are a type of flexible hose designed to transfer a range of liquids or gases from one point to another. These hoses are more adaptable than other types due to being made from mixed materials, allowing more versatile use.
This type of hose pipe uses a spiral of strong wire and wraps it with layers of polymers, film, or other materials. Finally, a second spiral of durable wire completely binds the hose. Following this ‘Mandel Wrapped Principle’ creates a robust composite hose with higher pressure resistance.
Whether the wires are made from galvanised or stainless steel, aluminium, or a polymer-coated alloy, they keep the hose tightly linked together under pressure. The wrapping element can also be made from a range of materials, such as polypropylene or polyamide.
The ability to tailor composite hose materials depending on the application makes these flexible hoses the best choice for bespoke operations. If you’re curious about why you would use composite hoses or how they’re actually applied in real world situations, read on to find out.
Why use a composite hose?
The main reason that these hoses are preferred for industrial applications is that they’re so versatile. Different industries can customise flexible hoses according to their unique mechanical requirements, from the cargo and pressure to the length and temperature.
Composite hoses are suitable for carrying a variety of strong chemicals because of their pressure, temperature, and vacuum resistance. Unlike standard steel piping, a composite stainless steel hose is more resistant to corrosion and therefore less likely to fail from chemical erosion.
As their alternative name might suggest, these hoses are very flexible, as there’s no glue, welding, or other sealant involved. Their lightweight but strong construction and low bending radius make it easy to manoeuvre these tubes into the required positions.
The multiple layers that make up composite hoses decrease the risk of pipes bursting, because there’s no direct path for leaks. If an interior leak does occur, the eventual build-up will be visible from the outside at the seams, allowing you time to address the problem and prevent a rupture.
All of these reasons contribute to the prevalence of composite hoses across so many industries.
Applications for composite hoses
Composite hoses are everywhere, from residential homes to commercial premises and factories. They have an abundance of uses, including things like air ventilation in enclosed spaces and piping water for bathrooms, kitchens, laundries, or fire engines.
Industries that deal with hazardous substances at any stage of their process usually rely on flexible hoses to get these aggressive materials safely from A to B. Here are some examples of areas where composite hoses come in handy:
- Power plants – moving, refining, or delivering pressurised liquids or gases
- Liquid and gas fuels – petroleum, kerosene, diesel, crude oil, other hydrocarbon products
- Rail cars and tankers – transferring chemical fuels to or from vehicles
- Ship to ship or ship to shore – loading or unloading, including at piers and port terminals
- Chemical production – e.g. solvents, paints, acids, alkalis, pharmaceuticals
- Food manufacturing – transporting hot water or hot oils
- Agriculture – irrigating crops, fuelling harvest machines
- Cryogenics – conveying low-temperature products such as ethylene, propene, liquified gases, or dry ice
They can be designed to handle hot or cold temperatures and high pressures in rough-handling situations, all while keeping workers safe and reducing the risk of leakages, fires, or other incidents that could be catastrophic with a weaker hose.
There are so many potential purposes for a composite hose, and these are just a few of the possible applications out there. Hopefully you now have a better idea of how and why these durable hoses are used. Though you may not have given composite hoses a second thought before, it’s easy to see that we rely on this equipment for many services we often take for granted.