top of page

What is Workover in Oil and Gas and Why is it Important?

Workover is a term used in the oil and gas industry to describe the maintenance and repair of existing wells. This process is used to restore production from a well that has decreased or stopped flowing, and it is an important part of the lifecycle of an oil or gas well.

These tasks are performed using specialized equipment, such as workover rigs, and a team of skilled workers.

There are several operations for a proper workover depending upon the need of the well.

1) Examples of Workover operations

Let us see a few examples of workover operations.

a) Pump changeout: Replacing a downhole pump to restore or increase production from a well.

b) Tubing changeout: Removing and replacing production tubing to restore or improve flow from a well.

c) Completion repair: Fixing problems with the well completion, such as plugged or damaged perforations, to restore or improve flow.

d) Zonal isolation: Isolating specific zones within the well to perform maintenance or repairs without affecting production from other zones.

e) Stimulation: Enhancing the flow of oil or gas from a well by applying pressure, chemical treatments, or other techniques.

f) Scale removal: Removing buildup of minerals or other substances in the wellbore to restore or improve flow.

g) Well cleanout: Removing debris, fluids, or other material from the wellbore to restore or improve flow.

h) Logging and perforation: Conducting downhole logging or perforating operations to obtain information about the well or to improve production.

i) Plug and abandonment: Plugging and abandoning a well that is no longer productive, to ensure that it is no longer a source of environmental or safety risks.

j) Surface facility maintenance: Maintaining surface facilities, such as production manifolds or flow lines, to ensure that they are operating safely and efficiently and many more.

Register for the IADC Workover operations courses available for the beginner and supervisory levels.

2) Steps taken to ensure workover in oil and gas

It is important to follow a set of steps so that companies can ensure workover operations are being performed safely and efficiently.

a) Planning: A detailed plan is developed for each workover operation, taking into account the specific requirements of the well, the goals of the workover, and the available resources.

b) Safety: Safety is the top priority in any workover operation. All workers are trained on the specific hazards associated with the job, and a thorough risk assessment are performed before work begins.

c) Equipment preparation: All equipment are inspected and prepared prior to the start of the workover, including workover rigs, tools, and safety equipment.

d) Well evaluation: Before work begins, the well is thoroughly evaluated to determine the extent of the work required, and to ensure that the well is in a safe and stable condition.

e) Fluid management: Proper fluid management is critical to the success of a workover operation. This may involve removing fluid from the well, controlling fluid flow, or disposing of fluids in an environmentally responsible manner.

f) Well control: Maintaining well control is critical to the safety of the workover operation. This may involve installing well control equipment, such as blowout preventers, or implementing procedures to control the flow of fluids.

g) Personnel management: Effective personnel management is essential to the success of a workover operation. This may involve training workers, assigning tasks, and ensuring that workers are aware of the specific hazards associated with the job.

h) Monitoring and testing: Ongoing monitoring and testing should are throughout the workover operation, to ensure that the well is operating as expected, and that any issues are identified and addressed promptly.

i) Documentation: All aspects of the workover operation should be thoroughly documented, including planning, execution, and postoperative analysis. This documentation can be used to improve future workovers, and to ensure that the well is operating safely and efficiently.

In conclusion, workover operations play a critical role in the oil and gas industry, helping to extend the life of existing wells, improve efficiency, and enhance safety. By investing in regular workover operations, companies can ensure that their wells are producing oil and gas in a sustainable and responsible manner, and continue to generate value for years to come.


Share your thoughts in the comments below:

LearnToDrill is specialized in IADC approved Well control and Workover courses and has certified candidates who have seen a 40% growth in their career. Register yourself today!

Reach out to us for a happy discount at



bottom of page