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Should I Choose FlowGuard® CPVC or PPR Piping?
By: FlowGuard EMEA on 29-may-2024 11:31:31
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Should I Choose FlowGuard® CPVC or PPR Piping?

  • FlowGuard® CPVC is a strong, durable piping material with reliable tensile strength and chlorine resistance

  • FlowGuard CPVC solvent cement welding enables faster, cost effective installation with no electricity requirements


  • FlowGuard CPVC is proven to inhibit microbial development and recognised globally for potable water safety, with an NSF 61 Annex G Certification

  • FlowGuard CPVC Piping Systems are known for fire safety and sustainability, providing a long and dependable service life


Chlorinated Polyvinyl Chloride (CPVC) is the most popular piping material in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. FlowGuard CPVC has been used around the world for more than 60 years, and specifically in the Middle East for more than 30.

FlowGuard CPVC's primary alternative in certain parts of the KSA region is polypropylene (PPR,) or green pipe. PPR has left some homeowners, plumbers and traders questioning which is better for their home.

Our material scientists have collected research and findings from studies around the world to compare the materials side-by-side, across 7 core categories.


1. Physical Properties

With 60% greater tensile strength and nearly twice the flexural strength, FlowGuard CPVC is a stronger, more durable piping material than PPR. Due to its strength, FlowGuard CPVC can withstand more pressure, which means the same flow rate, with smaller pipes.

FG_Blog-Physical Strength Graph (1)

2. Ease and Efficiency of Installation

FlowGuard CPVC pipes and fittings are joined with a simple solvent cement welding process. Conversely, PPR systems are connected using heat fusion welding.

With solvent cement, FlowGuard CPVC piping system can be cost effectively installed:

  • Using simple and cheap tools
  • Quickly and easily saving time and money
  • Securely (solvent cement jointing chemically fuses parts together, becoming the strongest part of the system)
  • Without electricity

In addition, FlowGuard CPVC pipe’s rigidity requires fewer hangers and supports to be used during installation and makes it the best material for vertical plumbing and risers. In contrast, PPR piping system installation can be costly and take longer since it requires special equipment and more skilled labor. Heat welding can also lead to bead formation around the inside of the pipe, thus reducing water flow rate and increasing chances for bacterial growth. Finally, it requires extra room to assemble, meaning parts of the system need to be prefabricated.

Interested in Hot and Cold Plumbing Systems?

Learn how Flowguard can help


For more than 50 years, FlowGuard® Pipe and Fittings has provided reliable hot and cold water plumbing systems to residential and commercial buildings around the world.

3. Chlorine Resistance

Chlorine and chlorine dioxide are often used as drinking water disinfectants. When chlorine and water mix, they can form hypochlorous acid, which is known to break down piping material.

FG_Blog-Chlorine Resistance-Before and after (1)

FlowGuard CPVC pipe is subjected to a chlorination process, which makes it unaffected by the hypochlorous acid that is present in the potable water supply. This results in longer service life for plumbing systems.

When exposed to hypochlorous acid, PPR does not have the same defense mechanisms, leaving it susceptible to attack. This results in oxidation stress cracking inside the pipes and erosion of the pipe wall, leaving a thinner, weaker piping material.

4. Water Safety

FlowGuard® CPVC is approved for potable water applications by all major international agencies and holds an NSF 61 Annex G certification.  

NSF/ANSI 61 focuses on cold water / drinking water piping system components and the corresponding health effects, with a specific focus on lead. It was established to control the potential adverse human health effects from products that contact drinking water.

5. Bacteria Growth

Despite water disinfection, bacteria can still be present in your drinking water or hot water, and potentially grow on the inside of pipe walls. When using FlowGuard Plumbing Systems, the smoothness of the pipe surface and lack of plasticizers discourages microbial growth.

Blog-Legionella Bacteria Growth Graph

Multiple international studies, like the one conducted by research firm Kiwa, have confirmed the superior antimicrobial performance of FlowGuard CPVC piping systems compared to other piping materials, especially PPR.

In the chart below, KIWA found the number of Legionella bacteria in test water to be significantly lower than that of PPR.

6. Eco-Friendly and Sustainability

FlowGuard® CPVC is lower in petroleum content than other plastic materials, including pipe PPR. This means that it takes less energy to manufacture. At the end of its service life, it can be reground into pellets and recycled into new piping, or transformed into things we’re surrounded by every day─floor fillings, floor coatings, speed bumps, car mats and more.

7. Fire Resistance

FlowGuard CPVC piping doesn’t support combustion. It requires 60% oxygen in the atmosphere to sustain a flame. Earth’s atmosphere is 21% oxygen.

FG_Blog-Fire Resistance (1)

To burn, the temperature would need to reach 480°C, and even then, the material chars. This charring layer actually serves as an insulator, partially shielding the inner portion of piping material from the heat. FlowGuard CPVC has the lowest possible combustion rating for any non-metal.

When comparing combustibility with FlowGuard CPVC vs PPR, PPR has a limiting oxygen index of 18, making 3x more combustible than FlowGuard CPVC. In addition, the material will generate more heat and increase the risk of fire damage.

FlowGuard CPVC is the Superior Choice

Made with superior materials, FlowGuard CPVC Plumbing Pipes and Fittings are backed by more than 60 years of proven performance and provide safety, durability and reliability for cost-effective residential plumbing systems in the Middle East and around the world.

Have questions about FlowGuard CPVC vs PPR, or how FlowGuard CPVC can help with your next project? Contact the piping systems consultants at FlowGuard Plumbing Systems today.


For more than 50 years, FlowGuard® Pipe and Fittings has provided reliable hot and cold water plumbing systems to residential and commercial buildings around the world.


For more than 50 years, FlowGuard® Pipe and Fittings has provided reliable hot and cold water plumbing systems to residential and commercial buildings around the world.