Different Types of Plumbing Fittings
– In the UK there are two ways in which most plumbing is done, the first and most common is done with copper pipe and fittings, the other is the newer plastic push fit system. The copper pipe and fittings has come under scrutiny recently as the joining of the copper pipes is increasingly
difficult as it is often time consuming and awkward due to the fact that copper pipe is often supplied in straight lengths meaning that it needs
to be joined or bent when ever a change of direction occurs. Plastics on the other hand, like that of the push fit system helps to eradicate this awkwardness. Push fit gives you a simple and easy way to make a joint without losing reliability and can be straightforwardly broken down and reassembled.
Advantages of Push-fit
– Plastic pipe is flexible; it is able to bend in a non-linear fashion. Copper piping has limited flexibility.
Plastic piping will not burst. Copper piping has a tendency to freeze and burst leaving huge amounts of damage making it harder to introduce this into
cold areas like cellars. Very much in contrast to plastic pipe.
Due to its flexibility plastic pipe can be pushed thought holes in joists rather than being laid in notches. This is not realistic with copper piping
as it is hard to get the holes in line.
Push fit systems can also be used with copper pipe when so desired as it is very adaptable.
Disadvantages of Push-Fit
– Due to its flexibility the plastic pipe will not support its own weight. This is will not jeopardize its ability to work however, but it would be difficult to poke a bent pipe through a hole in floor boards.
Plastic pipe cannot come into contact with anything that is very hot, for example a boiler. If in contact with a boiler there is a possibility that it could melt therefore it is advised that metal pipe work is used for the first few feet.
Aesthetically the plastic pipes are bigger and less attractive than its copper counter parts.
Plastic pipes and fittings are pricier than their competitor copper.
– Like that of the copper piping, plastic piping is available in both 15mm and 22mm diameter. They are available in a wide range of accessories
including: straight, right angled and Tee couplings. Washing machine taps, tap connectors, in-line stopcocks, one-way valves, stop ends and tank connectors.
– If you don’t normally use plastic fittings it is certainly worth keeping some around, especially in the winter. If a pipe bursts you will be able to fix the problem in a matter of minutes and the effects will be long lasting.