Horizontal Directional Drilling

Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) In Western, PA

Shadco’s horizontal directional drilling (HDD) division provides an excellent alternative to conventional trenching. With the ability to handle utilizes up to 12 inches in diameter, we can provide a less invasive installation with reduced environmental impact. Additionally, HDD allows placement of pipes, water and sewer lines, and more where location may normally cause an issue. For instance, if you need to run a line under a road, horizontal directional drilling allows you to go directly underneath without disruption of the surface.


Dave Cass

Contact Dave Cass for information on Horizontal Directional Drilling projects.

Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) is a steerable trenchless method of installing underground pipe, conduit or cable via a bore path that has minimal impact on the surrounding area. This type of drilling is ideally suited for situations where excavation of entrance and exit pits is not possible, the geological conditions require it, or other requirements. 

Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD) should be considered for your project if you fall into any of two of the following criteria: 

  • Deeper than 5 feet
  • Is it below the water table?
  • Is the soil unstable?
  • Is it in an urban area?
  • Is the installation under a railroad, river or roadway?
  • Is the installation in a residential area?
  • Is the installation over 180 ft? 

There are 4 main stages for horizontal directional drilling. 

Stage 1 – Drilling the Pilot Hole

  • The first step to a successful HDD project is to drill the pilot hole. The pilot hole is drilled across the predetermined path to the end point. A electronic transceiver housed within the drilling cutting head sends information back to a receiver on the surface that allows it to be manually steered. 

Stage 2 – Pre-Reaming the horizontal boring

  • Once the pilot hole is finished, the bore hole is enlarged to the appropriate diameter for the project. Our crew will enlarge the bore hole with successive pass throughs. The reamer is attached to the drill string to pull back through the pilot hole. While this is happening, drill fluid or “slurry” is pumped into the borehole to maintain the integrity of the hole and flush out all the debris and cuttings.  

Stage 3 – Pullback Operations

  • Once the drill hole is at the set diameter, the conduit or pipe can be pulled through it. The pipeline is prefabricated at the end of the bore opposite to where the drilling is occurring. With the pipeline connected, it is pulled back through the drilled hole until it exits the bore path and the pipeline is in place. 

Stage 4 – Installation of Conduits 

  • In the cases where the conduit is carrying power lines, fiber optic cables or other product, the product gets attached to a cable and is then pulled through the conduit. Once in position and all product is installed, our teams will pressure test to ensure the integrity of the pipe and begin clean-up services.
  • Faster Installation
  • Lower Cost
  • Less Disruption
  • Location and installation flexibility
  • Less environmental damage 

The Shadco Advantage

Shadco, LLC is dedicated to providing high quality services with a controlled approach to every project to ensure it is completed on time and to the owners satisfaction. 

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