This case-history paper presents the development background and detail of optimized procedures followed to plug and abandon wells in a cyclic-steam well in central California. Improvements that resulted in the success are detailed and explained.
Abandonment processes included identification, using tilt-meter events, of holes in casing and/or casing parting. Temperature surveys and/or radioactive surveys confirmed and located depth of the hole in the casing. Specific procedures were then followed to abandon the well below the part, at the part, and then above the part in the casing. Inspection and testing of the casing were also conducted to help ensure that additional holes were not present in the casing before the abandonment was complete. In the rare instances that additional holes were found, they were squeezed off separately with cement. Key to the success of this procedure was squeezing thixotropic cement instead of setting balanced plugs across zones of interest. This method allowed for short turn-around times to resume operations and helped ensure that the cement remained where it was originally placed.