An ERW pipe (“electric resistance welding”) is manufactured by cutting, bending and welding steel coils longitudinally. The most common welding technique used for oil and gas pipes is the so-called “high-frequency induction technology” (ERW-HFI), consisting in the application of an induction current on the outer surface of the pipe able to generate a robust seam weld and join the two sides of the steel coil very tightly. No filler materials are therefore used for ERW pipes (differently from LSAW pipes).


ERW pipes are available in sizes between 1/2 and 20 inches, in carbon steel (ASTM A53 is a common grade) and stainless steel (ASTM A312).

The dimensions and sizes of ERW pipes are covered by the ASME B36.10 and ASME B36.19 specifications (respectively, carbon and alloy, and stainless steel ERW pipes).


ERW pipes are manufactured starting for steel coils, that are at first uncoiled, cut, processed, welded and tested as shown in the picture below.

ERW pipe manufacturing process
ERW pipe manufacturing process


The ERW steel pipes manufacturing process (source: Tenaris Youtube Channel)



An LSAW pipe (“submerged arc welding”) is manufactured by cutting, bending and welding steel plates (JCOE process). LSAW pipes compete with seamless and ERW pipes in the size range between 16 and 24 inches but become the only option for pipe sizes above 24 inches. The two main types of LSAW pipes are the longitudinal (with a single or double straight seam weld, DSAW) and the spiral type (called, HSAW or SSAW pipe). 

LSAW pipes welded

In the oil and gas industry, API 5L LSAW pipes are used for hydrocarbons transmission and distribution over long distances. HSAW/SSAW spiral weld pipes are used for non-critical application as water transmission and distribution (not for oil & gas).



LSAW pipes are manufactured with the so-called JCOE process, starting from steel plates as illustrated below.

LSAW pipe manufacturing process


LSAW steel pipes manufacturing process (source: Corinth Pipeworks Youtube Channel).


Looking for the price of welded pipes, i.e. ERW and LSAW? Click on the image and check our online welded pipe price estimation tool!

welded pipes prices

The tool estimates the price for welded pipes manufactured in Europe and Asia, for example:

What is a schedule 40 welded steel pipe price (6 inches, API 5L Gr X52)?

Even if our price estimates are reliable, prices shall always be double checked with welded pipe manufacturers and distributors to be on the safe side!



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