Open End vs. Closed End Pipe Pile

Pipe piles are employed during deep foundation projects to transfer loads from large structures and buildings to deep layers underground. They are pipes made of steel and may be seamless, welded, or spiral-welded. Additionally, they may be either open end or closed end. Open end and closed end pipe piles are each better suited to specific types of applications. If you’re wondering what differentiates the two from each other, here’s what you should know:

Used Steel Pipe for Sale

Closed End Pipe Pile

Closed end pipe pile has an opening at its bottom that is covered with either a plate made of steel or a conical tip. A closed end pipe pile’s covering may be called an “end cap.” Closed end pipe piles are great for being driven into loose sands as well as soft soils. They are also suitable for jobs that require load bearing capacity from the entirety of the pile toe. Below are some of the many applications in which closed end pipe pile may be used:

  • Highway foundations

  • Bridge foundations

  • Building foundations

  • Railway foundations

  • Communication tower foundations

  • Offshore construction foundations (where the ground isn’t particularly rocky)

Closed end pipe piles are frequently filled with concrete to maximize their load bearing abilities and resistance against pressure.

Open End Pipe Pile

Open end pipe piles do not have end caps (plates made of steel or conical tips) that cover their openings. Open end pipe pile is often the preferred choice for oil and gas as well as energy projects like wind turbine projects. Open end pipe piles are great at offering resistance to heavy winds and tidal forces. They are the best choice for driving into marine locations as well as rocky locations. They provide excellent columnar strength.

The following soil conditions are ideal for the use of open-end pipe pile:

  • A dense layer of soil underneath a soft layer of soil

  • A dense layer of soil underneath a layer of soil with medium density

Attempting to drive closed end pipe pile in either of those soil conditions can prove to be a challenge, and open end pipe pile is often the best choice.

Buying Closed End and Open End Pipe Pile

Both closed end and open end pipe pile can be purchased either new or used. There is a large variety of new and used pipe pile on the market in a plethora of different sizes and configurations with varying load bearing capabilities. Used pipe pile has been utilized for one or more project whereas surplus pipe pile may have been purchased for a previous project but not used. Because of skyrocketing steel prices of the “new” steel market, used pipe pile has become an even better option in the last few years!

Before purchasing used pipe pile, consider its overall condition, size, strength, and whether it is closed end or open end. Additionally, you should consider whether it is seamless, welded, or spiral-welded. Each welding type comes with unique advantages for certain types of projects. You should buy with the individual needs of your project in mind.

Used Steel Pipe Button

Buy and Sell with Eiffel Trading

Eiffel Trading’s online marketplace is a one-stop-shop for used and new structural steel! We have it all… from used pipe pile, to brand new h-pile beams, to used sheet pile, and everything in between. In addition, our equipment inventory includes used drill rigs, used vibratory hammers, used concrete formwork, and more.

All of our listings are constantly being updated, but if you don’t see what you’re looking for, create a wanted listing.

Ready to sell your used heavy equipment or construction material? List your products today on Eiffel Trading’s online marketplace.

If you have any questions or would like additional information, please call us at 1-800-541-7998 or email