The hidden cost of PPR plumbing pipes
The true value of a plumbing professional is not just demonstrated in the use of their materials; it is also in the application of the service and ongoing performance of the installed system.
Despite its ongoing use in plumbing systems, PPR pipe is susceptible to a number of mechanical and operational pitfalls that can easily be avoided. Meanwhile, FlowGuard CPVC is increasingly specified among contractors for cost-effective plumbing solutions that are easy to install, using materials that are manufactured and available in your area.
The hidden cost of PPR: beading
PPR pipes and fittings are joined using heat fusion, essentially melting one part into another to form a cohesive bond. This is a time-consuming, hazardous process that is, unfortunately, unavoidable when specifying PPR material.
Beyond the safety and operational risk to plumbers, there are more issues related to this process that you may not notice at first. The internal beading caused by heat fusion can present a number of long-term mechanical and financial problems for your clients.
Let's learn how PPR beading can have short and long-term detrimental effects on plumbing pipe systems, and how CPVC pipe material performs using the same criteria.
CPVC is stronger and more durable than PPR. In plumbing applications, this allows for higher pressure rates, enabling plumbers to use smaller pipes in tight spaces or hard to reach areas. When PPR joints are formed, internal beading can limit the flow of water.
Ease of installation
Beyond problematic internal beading, the actual process of PPR heat fusion is time-consuming and potentially dangerous. Heat welding equipment is heavy, costly and makes for a potentially dangerous working environment, putting installers through unnecessary risk.
CPVC can be effectively installed by a one man team using simple hand tools. Solvent cement welding is a proven installation process that does not require heat or electricity and forms a strong permanent bond of pipes and fittings.
One of the biggest risks to PPR plumbing is erosion caused by chlorine and chlorine dioxide. The constant presence of chlorine in water distribution persistently wears away at the pipe material, making weak joints weaker.
CPVC is formulated via chlorination at the molecular level and is therefore unaffected by chlorine present in potable water supplies.
The natural smoothness of CPVC pipe material helps prevent microbial growth, whereas the textured surface of PPR pipes that have internal beading may facilitate biofilm growth to potentially dangerous levels, increasing the risk of legionella bacteria and other contaminants in the water.
FlowGuard CPVC raises the standard of plumbing system installation and performance when compared with PPR pipe material.
Learn more about the safety and cost advantages of specifying FlowGuard CPVC in your plumbing systems in the Plumber's Guide to CPVC.