Different Types of Pipes and Their Uses

Do you have a plumbing project you’d like to get started on but are not sure what material to use? This can be a common problem among homeowners, whether it be your first time owning a home in Washington State or you’re renovating your decade-old home. Knowledge of plumbing pipes isn’t something you just learn in school growing up unless you specialize in becoming a plumbing professional. So it’s understandable if you are still a little lost in what you’d like to install in your home.

Aside from understanding the state’s plumbing code when working on a project at home, it would be very helpful to understand the difference between different types of pipes and how they are used as well.

To give you a better understanding, below is a list of some of the most common pipes used for plumbing as well as what they’re best suited for.

Steel Pipes

Steel is among some of the most widely used materials for water and gas piping systems. Thanks to its durability and corrosion resistance properties, steel pipes are a good choice for piping projects for commercial purposes.

Three of the most common steel pipes are carbon steel, stainless steel, and alloy steel. These are widely used in industrial applications such as petrochemical plants, pharmaceutical companies, and gas pipeline installation.

PVC Pipes

Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) pipes are the most commonly used piping materials for home plumbing projects. You’ll see them used on sinks, toilets, kitchen drains, and more. Since it is made of highly durable and somewhat heat-resistant materials, PVC doesn’t rust or corrode easily, making it an excellent choice for plumbing applications. It’s also easy to cut and install during construction.

A somewhat similar material, Chlorinated Polyvinyl Chloride (CPVC) pipes are also available in the market. They are made of the same elements. But CPVC, as the name suggests, gets a different level of chlorination while it’s being manufactured.

CPVC is made to withstand higher temperatures while PVC can operate up to a temperature of 140°F.

Brass Pipes

If you want the same durability as PVC but are also looking out for the aesthetics of your home, you can try installing brass pipes instead. Just like PVC, brass pipes are a good material for water lines due to their ability to resist corrosion. You can also cut and size it easily according to your liking, just like PVC pipes.

Copper Pipes

Often compared to brass pipes, copper is a good material for heating and cooling systems due to its conductive properties. Unlike brass which is a harder material, copper is a pretty malleable material, making it a good choice for water line installations. 

The only downside to copper is it’s more expensive than brass. But its resilience is enough reason for you to pay that extra price.

HDPE Pipes

High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes have been used in the industry for 50 years, for projects from supplying water to agricultural applications. A plastic material made from petroleum, HDPE is a more flexible material compared to PVC which can be a bit more brittle. It can also withstand a higher pressure class than PVC and has a high water damage resistance.

Talk To Your Plumber About Pipes

With all this talk about piping materials, you might be wondering which one is the best for your home or business plumbing project. The best thing to do is to book an appointment with your local plumbing experts so they can go through each step of the process with you. They’ll also be suggesting the material that they believe will fit your property best.

Drain Pro Plumbing is your local Kent-based plumbing company with proven expertise and knowledge when it comes to plumbing pipe materials, plumbing solutions, and more. If you want to find out more about our services, call us at (206) 785-1404 and we’ll be happy to help you out.

Call Us at (206) 785-1404

or fill out our online form for a free home estimate today!

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