The Do’s and Don’ts of Plumbing – Types of Pipes in Your Home

Have you ever asked yourself, “What are the types of pipes that plumbers put in my home?” I read an article from a home improvement website that the types of pipes used in drains and homes
 vary, depending on the purpose that they will be used for.

Qualified Miami plumbing contractors know which ones to pick since they are experts in installation, as well as determining the lifespan of each of these materials. 

Types of Plumbing Pipes and Their Lifespans

Nothing lasts forever, and that includes the plumbing pipes in your home. Fortunately, the majority of pipe materials perform well for decades. However, when that lifespan is reached, pipes may start to leak.

To prevent leaks, use the chart below to determine if your home’s plumbing lifespan is adequate or if water pipes are bursting for attention.

To prevent health hazards, check for lead pipes.

Know your pipes

Review the home inspection report you got when you bought your home to see what kind of pipes you have—or bring in a licensed plumber to do an inspection of your plumbing system. Expect to pay at least $75 for a plumber’s service call.

Knowing what types of pipes plumbers use is fine and dandy. Certainly, it’s helpful when you are building or remodeling your home. But just how do you know whether the pipes in your current home are up to par? How do you know whether those pipes should be replaced, whether the materials that were used are safe? The following article can help you identify the types of plumbing pipes used in your home or business.

How to Recognize Different Types of Pipes – For Dummies

To tackle a do-it-yourself plumbing project, you need to know how to recognize different types of pipes. Recognizing the different types of pipes within your house is vital to knowing the right repair technique.

The most common pipes used today are copper, PVC, or ABS. However, when dealing with older homes, you might encounter a number of other piping material. For example, homes built before 1960 used galvanized steel or cast iron DWV (drain/waste/vent) pipe systems.

Here’s a quick look at types of pipes commonly used in homes, beginning with the pipes used for DWV systems.

Cast iron: Commonly used before 1960 for the vertical drain, vent stacks, and sometimes the horizontal drain lines. Cast iron is durable, but can rust over time. Call a professional plumber to replace rusted sections with plastic (PVC or ABS) and the correct transition fittings.

Plastic: Plastic pipe comes as either ABS (acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene) or PVC (polyvinyl-chloride). Most homes since mid-1970 have plastic pipes and fittings because it’s inexpensive and easy to use. Simply glue the joints using a primer and liquid cement.

ABS: This black pipe was the first plastic pipe to be used in residential plumbing. Today, many areas don’t allow ABS in new construction because joints can come loose. Check with your local plumbing inspector if you want to use ABS.

PVC: This white or cream-colored pipe is the most commonly used pipe for drain lines. It’s strong, untouchable by chemicals, and seems to last forever! The rating and diameter is stamped right on the pipe.

Schedule 40 PVC is strong enough for residential drain lines, but check with your plumbing inspector first. CPVC (chlorinated polyvinyl chloride) pipe has the strength of PVC but is heat-resistant, which makes it acceptable in many regions for use on interior supply lines. Schedule 80 PVC is sometimes used for cold-water supply lines, but it isn’t allowed in some regions because it isn’t suitable for hot water.

The pipes used in the plumbing of your home or property are probably one of the most important elements of your residence or business (even if they aren’t visible). The pipes are what keep the water draining efficiently for years. So when building or remodeling, you want to be sure to use quality materials. Even for a repair or maintenance job, you need to know how to identify the different pipes used in the home.  Of course,  calling in a licensed South Florida plumber is the easiest way to get your pipes inspected, repaired and maintained to avoid future problems and costlier repairs.