13 Tips For Successful CPVC Pipe Installation
Chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC) pipe and fitting installation is quick and cost-effective. Pipes are joined with an easy solvent cement welding process and inexpensive and readily available tools. Additionally, CPVC installation is much safer than green pipe (PPR) because it does not require heat fusion techniques or torches, which allows for easy installation in tight, confined spaces.
Following best practices for FlowGuard® pipe and fittings installation will ensure a reliable, long-lasting plumbing system.
The tips highlighted below do not replace the manufacturer’s instructions, but provide a list of helpful dos and don’ts.
Storage and Handling
Although FlowGuard CPVC is durable, practice proper care and storage for successful installation.
- Tip #1: Store pipe on flat areas, free of sharp jagged rocks or debris that could puncture or damage the pipe. Additionally, never set anything heavy, sharp or rough on top of the piping.
- Tip #2: Keep piping covered when exposed to UV light, such as when storing it outside. Although some exposure to UV won’t damage piping, we still recommend covering piping with a non-transparent material.
- Tip #3: Avoid storing CPVC pipe in high-traffic areas. Never store piping in areas where heavy power equipment is moved around. Although CPVC is a strong material, running over the pipes with heavy machinery can cause damage.
Preparing For Installation
While CPVC installation is fairly simple, a few safeguards will ensure a reliable system.
- Tip #4: Wear protective clothing, safety goggles, and gloves. While solvent cement welding is much safer than other installation methods, it’s still a chemical process, so skin and eyes should be covered.
- Tip #5: Wipe away any dirt or moisture from the pipe and fittings using a cleaner to ensure a strong solvent cemented bond.
- Tip #6: Inspect the pipe before and after cutting. There should be no visible cracks or damage. If damage is present, measure 5 centimeters from the end of the crack and recut the pipe.
- Tip #7: Use an appropriate tool to ensure a square cut and maximize the bonding surface. Use a sharp circular saw, miter saw, hand saw or ratchet cutter and make sure the blade is fine toothed (6 to 7 teeth per centimeter).
- Tip #8: Bevel the pipe prior to solvent welding. Using sandpaper, create a slight bevel along the pipe edge. This will prevent the solvent cement from being pushed down into the fitting.
When installed properly, newly-formed joints become the strongest part of the system. To achieve this result, abide by a few standby rules.
- Tip #9: Try to join seams in cooler areas or shade. Heat can increase how quickly solvent cement evaporates. Pipes and fittings should only be joined while the solvent cement is wet, so stay in a cool area to make sure the solvent cement doesn’t begin to dry before you’re ready to join the pipe and fitting.
- Tip #10: Allow the joint to set before moving forward. Properly align the fitting and hold the assembly for 10 seconds.
- Tip #11: Never re-apply over dried solvent cement. If solvent cement dries before you’ve bonded the pipe and fitting, recut the pipe or use a different pipe and fitting.
- Tip #12: Use the correct cure time. FlowGuard CPVC cure times vary based on temperature, humidity, and pipe size. Refer to the solvent cement manufacturer’s manual for specific times. The FlowGuard Pipe and Fittings Installation Guide also provides general time suggestions, but shouldn’t replace manufacturer instructions.
- Tip #13: Always look for an even bead of cement around the newly-formed joint. If the bead is not visible, then solvent cement might not have been properly applied. If this is the case, remake the joint to ensure system integrity.
Want to Learn More Tips For Installing FlowGuard® CPVC?
Check out the full FlowGuard Pipe and Fittings Installation Guide for additional installation instructions, including proper storage and handling, cure time recommendations and using hangers and supports.
If you have any questions about FlowGuard CPVC pipe and installation, our team of piping system consultants is ready to talk.