Emergency Maintenance Made Easier With New Carbothane DTM Mastic

At midstream oil & gas terminals around the world, quick-turn maintenance and emergency paint jobs are a constant in the business.

In Philadelphia, one terminal’s emergency doubled as a successful field trial for Carboline's new Carbothane DTM Mastic.

A painter standing in a shallow pool of dirty water applies a protective coating to a coated steel pipe at a liquid terminal.

Carbothane DTM Mastic is a urethane-based hybrid mastic with excellent performance over minimally prepared surfaces and which requires no finish coat. Its mastic properties additionally offer some moisture tolerance during application; as a urethane, it retains its color and gloss longer and weathers far better than competing epoxy mastic maintenance coatings.

With Carbothane DTM Mastic, paint crews get in, do the job, and get out. And because the work holds up longer, you won't be seeing them back for a while.

An inspector checks the wet film thickness of a new protective coating applied to steel piping at a liquid terminal.

Paint It Now, Or Pay a Fine

To comply with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations, American liquid terminals' piping must be white. But crisp white piping rarely stays that way for long, especially when located within a Delaware River port serving the Philadelphia terminal's heavy industrial neighbors.

Some sections of the piping contained rust on the surface of its existing coating. Other sections had a yellow coating applied as patches. Much of it was caked in stubborn grime because it was located inside a dyke where dirty water frequently pooled.

Rust is visible on the painted surface of steel piping at a liquid terminal.

The piping was performing nominally, it just didn't look great. The EPA in July 2023 threatened to fine Kinder Morgan if they did not immediately repaint it.

Kinder Morgan's painting contractor, Ponns & Co., asked a Carboline sales representative to recommend the best product given that:

  • • The work had to proceed quickly
  • • The only surface preparation would be a pressure wash
  • • The coating needed to be applied by hand, not sprayed, to eliminate overspray risk
  • • The weather during application would be very hot with high relative humidity and dew points
  • • There was constant moisture in the vicinity of the piping

Our representative realized that these circumstances fit perfectly with the intended use of Carbothane DTM Mastic, which was then still in development. Ponns & Co. agreed to the trial, trusting the representative's instinct.

Dirt is visible on the underside of a coated steel pipe at a liquid terminal.

According to a Carboline report generated the day of the trial:

"The condition of the pipe is spots of bare steel and rust, and it is marginally cleaned. The pipe has been pressure washed but black dirt and debris remained on much of the underside of the pipe, especially closest to the ground."

"Contractor applied with whizz rollers and ½-inch (1.3 cm) nap rollers.The coating appeared to cover/hide very well.An area of yellow was overcoated and covered adequately in one coat. Film thickness build was checked and built to 4-6 wet mils with no runs observed. Most of application was being done at 2-4 wet mils overcoating the white areas. The film had a uniform appearance with no application issues."

A painter coats over a patch of old yellow paint on a steel pipe at a liquid terminal.

Why a Successful Field Trial Matters

Carbothane DTM Mastic was successful in its trial-by-fire for the same reason it is a paint crew's darling.

Because it can be applied and cures properly in a wider range of temperature and humidity conditions, crews can begin applying it in the morning and work through the day without worrying about how changes in the weather will impact their work.

The product can also reduce the total amount of time and material needed for emergency and small maintenance jobs because it is designed to perform in a single coat. And as a urethane, that single coat still provides better weathering performance compared to an epoxy. This is a compelling bonus particularly for midstream oil & gas terminals or any other site containing pipe under the EPA's purview.

The pipe must be white, and with Carbothane DTM Mastic, it will stay white longer.