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Tubing pressure test
22 January 2021
Dear Sirs,

I really need your help of how the new or used tubing hydro statically tested while it runs in the hole?

Thanks and Best Regards  
8 answer(s)
windy martdianzah
Drilling & Workover Engineer
Total Posts: 4
Join Date: 26/02/18
Hi Mohammed, 

Here we still run RCV nipple with check valve as part of completion string and pressure test in every 1000 ft RIH, finally after n/u tree we run JDC tool with slickline to retrieve so the production team can troubleshoot ESP in future 
Drilling Mgr
Cairn Energy
Total Posts: 20
Join Date: 15/01/09
Just to add to Marcel's theme. There are many production wells with leaking tubing or casing. I recall in one area where investigations were carried out to try to determine why there were leaks to the annulus in a number of wells and the culprit was the premium connections. Further investigation revealed that although torque-turn was recorded when the casing strings were run, no 'one was doing any QC on those and poor make-ups went unchallenged.
So I do recommend using torque-turn systems but be sure that each one is checked properly as they are run.
Managing director Punch Energy Services
Punch Energy Services
Total Posts: 21
Join Date: 24/06/20
Hi Mohammed, Harald,

Agree with points made by others and you Harald.

Guess you have to assess first it the project requires the tubing joints to be tested while RIH. Is it very critical, very high cost operations, very remote/isolated area and no access (due to weather conditions) throughout most time of the year?
If a pressure test while running is required, Schlumberger for example can supply a tubing test valve, it is a pressure test valve which facilitates pressure testing the tubing while running in the hole.

On the previous notes;
I have seen some leaking wells after taken into production.
This was with premium connections from 2 well known manufacturers. In one case there were a few wells which were leaking and after thorough investigation it became clear that the tubing connections were not machined within the tollerances. Also gauging procedures were not followed properly. 

Another case was that it just concerned an unhappy employee (someone who was being laid off) just hit the pin connections with a hamer and as a result the seal area was damaged. This was on the mill end pin side - that is were the coupling is made up at the plant so you will not notice later. To be honest it is very hard to detect this, you can run all kind of inspections later in the yard or on the rig and will never find this out. If the damage is minor it could even hold a pressure test for a short time. But for example can still start leaking after well is put in production and heating up.

After these issues occured additional inspections were put in place. All casing and tubing joints are inspected in the pipe yard, prior shipping to the rig. Completion tubulars/assemblies were also inspected on the rig floor prior running in hole. 

But luckily these occassions are very rare and hoping these remain so. 
On the other hand a lot can happen with transport and handling on the rig. Proper procedures shall be put in place and ahered to.
For example have seen that people were taken all protectors of tubulars while these were just on the pipe deck. Later some chains (for lifting) passed and damaged exposed pin connections.
Also seen people taking protectors off and just drag the joints up the floor damaging the pin connection. 

Someone told me that they will notice on the make up graph if the connection is damaged. Well people trust me you won't. As a test we hamered a few connections and made them up on the rig floor, you won't notice anything on the graph although the connection was seriously damaged.

Next to that; power tong settings, dies used, misalignment, wrong dope, mixing connections* (connection or weight or grade), weather, load cell etc.

Mixing connections can introduce risks or have other m/u values. Be carefull when mixing anything; is it interchangeable/compatible, what will be the weakest point in the string, even the same connection can have no tollerance mixing with other weights. There are yield difference limitations, many connections have only a 20-30ksi YS tollerance, some (like VAM21) more.

Hoping the above brain dump makes a bit sense, if not, drop me a note.

All the best with the project.

Best regards,

Marcel de Klerk
Senior Advisor Well Engineering Global Skillpool
Total Posts: 6
Join Date: 25/12/15
Dear Mohammed,

As a standard a testing program is typically prepared when running tubing.

As mentioned by others, premium connections (with recorded make-up parameters to ensure proper make-up) are unlikely to leak, therefore less testing is required. when running used tubing I would increase the testing frequency, typically with a plug set at the bottom of the casing (other options were already mentioned as well).

As was also mentioned, no issue if well is not perforated or open hole, otherwise you are required to establish a proper procedure how to deal with a well control situation.

Is an optimization problem, as testing requires time and therefore costs money.

Take care and stay healthy
Senior Wells Advisor
Redstone Drilling
Total Posts: 45
Join Date: 13/09/07
Hi Mohammed,
As pointed out by others responding to this discussion, a leaking premium tubing connection is highly unlikely (I have never seen it) and performing pressure tests while RIH with the tubing would be very costly.
If you are concerned I would concentrate my efforts on the 
manufacturing or supplier of the tubing, inspection (including competency of inspectors), QA/QC of the TRS company and running procedure and apply active supervision.

Perhaps Marcel de Klerk can add something else to the discussion.

Best regards,
Harald Benning
SPREAD Associates
Total Posts: 167
Join Date: 05/03/08
Hi Mohammed,

In addition to the responses from Dave and Gordon, you could also look at the websites of the likes of Franks and Weatherford who are two of the main Service Companies who run tubular goods.

They offer various solutions to testing while running the completion, which have in the past also included running an inflatable packer into the connection just made up to test the connection from the inside, as opposed to the system mentioned by Gordon which tests from the outside.

But as pointed out by Gordon, these are very expensive and not used that often these days.

This is because the manufacturing process of premium connections and the systems used to run them have become so much better at catching problems before the connection is run below the rotary table.

Another option I know of (but not used myself) is a glass disc is run in the completion which allows all the tubing above it to be tested. A slick line run is made after the final test to break the glass disc.

But as mentioned by Gordon, you have to be able to have well control options at all times during running the Completion, as more well control incidents occur during W/O's than at any other time in the well construction process.
Technical Director / Trainer
SPREAD Associates
Total Posts: 16
Join Date: 31/03/20
following on from Dave's response there have been "well control issues" related to running completions with "plugs, standing valve, HydroTrip, PE500" type plugs or testing methods due to the inability to circulate if a well control incident arises during completion running.
These methods are now only recommended in cased hole completions.
The methods of testing in an open or pre perforated well (workover) (especially used tubing) is either of the following options.
1. rely on the make up chart from the "jam Unit'
2. There are 'clamps" that make up around each joint and test from outside each connection, very time consuming and if a company is trying to dave money by using second habd tubing this out weighs any saving
3. Run a standing valve or drop one in every 1000 ft of tubing run and recover (on slickline) after each test to allow circulation to take place.

In my 40 plus years of installing new and used completions i have only ever seen two leaking connections on premium connections that were not highlighted during make up, one of these was a hairline crack in a new joint pin and the other was excess dope.
Following proper completion preparation and installation procedures should alleviate any issues with leaks.
Managing Director (
Relentless Pursuit Of Perfection Ltd.
Total Posts: 488
Join Date: 10/01/05
Hi Mohammed

I hope that the situation will improve in Libya.  I have fond memories of my work-trips to Tripoli in September 2009 and February 2014.

It's not just the tubing that needs to be tested, but the integrity of the entire system.  Mostly, the tubing is premium type and is made up using torque-turn equipment to ensure that the connections are properly screwed together.

The sub-assemblies (accessories) are tested before running in the hole.

To enable the tests, a 'plug' has to be installed in the string.  The plug could be: a 'prong' set in the plug body; a standing valve; a disappearing plug.

These are removed once the string integrity has been proven.  

After setting the packer, the seal element integrity is tested, the safety valve is inflow-tested and the tubing hanger seals are tested (often through a fitting on the wellhead).

There will probably be additional/better responses, but I wanted to help a student, our next generation.

Google is also a great resource and there are websites like (established by Steve Devereux, now owned by myself) and that have plenty of free resources.

Take care and kind regards

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