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PLASTIC PIPE

Plastic pipe is a tubular section, or hollow cylinder, made of plastic. It is usually, but not
necessarily, of circular cross-section, used mainly to convey substances which can flow—liquids
and gases (fluids), slurries, powders and masses of small solids. It can also be used for structural
applications; hollow pipes are far stiffer per unit weight than solid members.
Plastic pipework is used for the conveyance of drinking water, waste water, chemicals, heating
fluid and cooling fluids, foodstuffs, ultra-pure liquids, slurries, gases, compressed
air and vacuum system applications.
MATERIALS USED
 ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene)
 UPVC (unplasticized polyvinyl chloride)
 CPVC (post chlorinated polyvinyl chloride)
 PB-1 (polybutylene)
 PP (polypropylene)
 PE (polyethylene) of various densities, also abbreviated
to LDPE, MDPE and HDPE (low, medium and high density polyethylene; the medium
density version is at times referred to as "black alkathene" in the UK)
 PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride)
 PE-RT (polyethylene RT)
 PEX (cross-linked polyethylene)
ADVANTAGES
Plastic plumbing pipe is ideal for amateurs to use because it is easy to work with and requires no
special skills or tools.
It also has many advantages over metal pipe: It is less expensive, lighter in weight and will not
rust or corrode. Plastic pipe also has insulative qualities that prevent condensation from forming
on pipes carrying cold water; these same qualities reduce heat loss through pipes carrying hot
water.

DISADVANTAGES
Despite its benefits, the use of plastic pipe is limited by the plumbing codes of many
communities, particularly if the pipe is to be used in multistory buildings, where water pressure
can be extreme.
But even where restrictions apply, plastic pipe can often be used in the drain-waste-vent (DWV)
portions of plumbing systems because these carry neither potable nor hot water. Nor do they
carry water under pressure greater than that caused by gravity.
If in doubt about code requirements in your area, ask the local building inspector.
Make sure all plastic pipe bears the seal of the National Sanitation Foundation. For drain-waste-
vent use only, choose polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipe. An older variety referred to as ABS pipe
generally meets DWV code requirements, but is sometimes more expensive than PVC and lacks
some of its advantages. Both types are rigid.
PLASTIC PIPE FITTINGS