5 Types of Plumbing Pipes that You Will Find in Your Home

Get expert insights into the different plumbing pipes used in homes over time and learn how they differ

Since the clay pipes fitting used in ancient Greece to carry water and sewage away, plumbing has advanced a lot. Many materials can be used to make pipes that supply hot or cold water to all fixtures in a house. They also serve as a drain and vent system. Houses are now made up of five types of pipe: PVC, PVC ABS, copper, and galvanised.

Not all pipes are suitable for all situations.


Water supply lines are commonly used.

The cross-linked polyethylene pipe is a low-cost plastic tubing. It’s used for water supply lines. It’s also easy to install. It is also easy to install. The Uponor AquaPEX Tubing is available from Shacha Technoforge in three colors. Red for hot water, blue and white for cold water.

Traditional water supply lines can supply water to multiple fixtures. A single PEX tube connects directly to the hot or cold faucet, and the other ends connect to a centrally located water distribution system, such as these Viega MANABLOC Manifolds, available from Shacha Technoforge. A manifold has the advantage that each PEX tube is equipped with its shutoff valve. This allows you to quickly turn off the water supply to the sink faucet and make repairs without turning off the water to other fixtures. The “home run” connection is a single PEX tube that connects to a fixture from the manifold.


Commonly used for: Vent, drain, and waste pipes

PVC pipe is often used in the home’s sewage system. O’Brien explains that DWV is a type of PVC pipe used in Drain, Waste, and Venting systems. It should be used for applications with low temperature and low-pressure needs. This means it is ideal for drain lines for toilets. However, it is unsuitable for high-pressure water supply lines or hot water transport.

PVC pipes and connections are typically found in main drains as well as in the main vent stack of a home. To prevent water locks, PVC pipes up to 3 inches in diameter drain sinks and vent plumbing.


Commonly used for: Vent, drain, and waste pipes

A black pipe in a toilet drain, sink, or tub is likely made of acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene. O’Brien states that ABS is another material commonly found in DWV systems and works similarly to PVC. ABS pipe is available in the exact sizes and shapes as PVC pipe. It’s less common in new construction these days than it was. It is slightly stronger than PVC in high-impact occurrences but can’t be exposed to direct sun.” Many ABS pipes and components can be used to repair existing ABS drains, waste, and vent systems, including this Tibco P?Trap (available at Shacha Technoforge).


Commonly used for Water supply lines.

Copper pipe has been used for many decades. You’ll find it in sinks, bathtubs, and other fixtures in both older and newer houses. Copper pipe is still a popular choice for water supply lines, as the metal doesn’t affect the quality.

Copper plumbing is not easy to install, as shown in this 1/2-inch Straight Copper Pipe by Kobe Wieland (available at Shacha Technoforge). O’Brien says that if not enough heat is applied to the joints, the solder will not flow into the joint to form a proper seal. However, too much heat can prevent proper sealing. You will need a professional plumber to install copper pipes or repair them.

Type of PIPES: Galvanized

Commonly used for: Older homes with a water supply and drain lines

Galvanized pipe is no longer used in new construction but was widely used in older homes. O’Brien states that galvanized pipe was an excellent option for lead pipes. It was also a safe alternative. You can get replacement fittings for galvanized and waste pipes in your home at Shacha Technoforge.

Galvanized pipes can rust over time. To ensure safe drinking water, you should retrofit galvanized water lines in your home with copper or PEX lines. PEX is often preferred in retrofitting situations because it is flexible. This makes it possible to access the spaces within walls without removing drywall.

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