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National pipe thread

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Threaded pipe and elbow

National Pipe Thread Tapered Thread (NPT) is a U.S. standard for tapered threads used to join pipesand

fittings. ANSI/ASME standard B1.20.1 covers threads of 60-degree form with flat crests and roots in sizes from 1/16 inch to 24

inch Nominal Pipe Size [NPS] (this standard also covers various parallel ('straight') threads, see [1]). The taper rate for all

NPT threads is 1⁄16 (¾ inch per foot) measured by the change of diameter (of the pipe thread) over distance. The taper

divided by a center line yields an angle 1° 47' 24" or 1.7899° as measured from the center axis. Commonly-used sizes are

⅛, ¼, ⅜, ½, ¾, 1, 1¼, 1½, and 2 inch, appearing on pipe and fittings by most U.S. suppliers. Smaller sizes than those listed

are occasionally used for compressed air. Larger sizes are used less frequently because other methods of joining are more

practical at 3 inches and above in most applications.

Nominal Pipe Size is loosely related to the inside diameter of Schedule 40 pipe. Because of the pipe wall thickness, the

actual diameter of the threads is larger than the NPS, considerably so for small NPS. Other schedules of pipe have different

wall thickness but the OD (outer diameter) and thread profile remain the same, so the inside diameter of the pipe is therefore

different from the nominal diameter.

Threaded pipes can provide an effective seal for pipes transporting liquids, gases, steam, and hydraulic fluid. These threads

are now used in materials other than steel and brass, including PVC, nylon, bronze and cast iron.

The taper on NPT threads allows them to form a seal when torqued as the flanks of the threads compress against each

other, as opposed to parallel/straight thread fittings or compression fittings in which the threads merely hold the pieces

together and do not provide the seal. However a clearance remains between the crests and roots of the threads, resulting in

a leakage around this spiral. This means that NPT fittings must be made leak free with the aid of thread seal tape or a

thread sealant compound. (The use of tape or sealant will also help to limit corrosion on the threads, which otherwise can

make future disassembly nearly impossible.)

There is also a semi-compatible variant called National Pipe Taper Fuel (NPTF) also called Dryseal American National

Standard Taper Pipe Thread, defined by ANSI B1.20.3, designed to provide a more leak-free seal without the use of teflon
tape or other sealant compound. NPTF threads are the same basic shape but with crest and root heights adjusted for an

interference fit, eliminating the spiral leakage path.

Sometimes NPT threads are referred to as MPT ('Male Pipe Thread'), MNPT, or NPT(M) for male (external) threads; and

FPT ('Female Pipe Thread'), FNPT, or NPT(F) for female (internal) threads. An equivalent designation is MIP (Male iron

pipe) and FIP (Female iron pipe). Also the terms NPS and NPSM are sometimes used to designate a parallel, instead of

taper, thread (this should not be confused with NPS meaningNominal Pipe Size).

Pipe thread sizes

Outer Pitch
Nominal Threads
Diameter of Thread
NPT Size per inch
inch (mm) inch (mm)

1 0.03704 in
/16" 0.3125 in (7.94 mm) 27
(0.94082 mm)

0.03704 in
⅛" 0.405 in (10.29 mm) 27
(0.94082 mm)

0.05556 in
¼" 0.540 in (13.72 mm) 18
(1.41122 mm)

0.05556 in
3/8" 0.675 in (17.15 mm) 18
(1.41122 mm)

0.07143 in
½" 0.840 in (21.34 mm) 14
(1.81432 mm)

0.07143 in
¾" 1.050 in (26.67 mm) 14
(1.81432 mm)

0.08696 in
1" 1.315 in (33.40 mm) 11½
(2.20878 mm)

0.08696 in
1¼" 1.660 in (42.16 mm) 11½
(2.20878 mm)

0.08696 in
1½" 1.900 in (48.26 mm) 11½
(2.20878 mm)
0.08696 in
2" 2.375 in (60.33 mm) 11½
(2.20878 mm)

2½" 2.875 in (73.02 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

3" 3.500 in (88.90 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

4" 4.500 in (114.30 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

5" 5.563 in (141.30 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

6" 6.625 in (168.27 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

10.750 in
10" 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)
(273.05 mm)

12.750 in
12" 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)
(323.85 mm)

14" OD 14 in (355.60 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

16" OD 16 in (406.40 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

18" OD 18 in (457.20 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

20" OD 20 in (508.00 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

24" OD 24 in (609.60 mm) 8 0.12500 in (3.175 mm)

Sometimes these terms may be used:

 MIP: stands for Male Iron Pipe, or Male International Pipe, or MPT Male Pipe Thread. It is a term for pipe fitting.

 FIP: stands for Female Iron Pipe, or Female International Pipe, or FPT. It is a term for pipe fitting that fit into MIP.

 COMPRESSION fitting is a different type of fitting than MIP FIP fitting, COM or CMP. It has 1 5/8" per inch taper, more

than FIP.
 FLARE fitting: a fitting that has tapered smooth tip, then threaded body. The Male flare fitting will require a female flare

fitting. It is usually found in gas line connection, where a tight smooth sealed surface is required.

 IPS: Iron Pipe Size thread. Even though the word "Iron" may be used in these abbreviations many materials used are

other metals, alloys, or plastics. IPS is taken same as MIP.

 Garden Hose:

The difference between FIP MIP and Compression fitting is in the tapering of the thread. FIT has 3/4" per foot taper, or only

1/16" per inch taper; Comp has 1 5/8" per foot, or only 13/96" per inch taper.

A compression fitting has a normal thread (like a screw) and relies on a ferrule (an olive shaped soft copper sleeve) or more

commonly a tap washer (fibre or rubber) to provide a watertight seal. For attaching to most taps (plastic or steel)

compression fittings are used, and remember to put a washer on! Normally the male threaded member has a blunt end that

the washer sits against. Or if it's to fit to a copper pipe, you stick on an olive, which is compressed against the pipe by the

adjacent conical seats in the fitting when it is tightened, and holds the pipe watertight. The tubing for compression is usually

straight, but the female and male part of fittings thread are also tapered, more taper than FIP MIP. For compression fitting,

the taper is 1 5/8" per 1 inch taper. For a 5/8 compression, the inside will be 3/16, the outside will be 23/32" for a distance of


A female iron connection has a tapered thread - which thins out to the end of the pipe. As you tighten against it, the ever-

decreasing thread depth means that the connection becomes watertight. You'd not use an olive or washer here - instead you

use a bit of PTFE tape (polytetrafluoroethylene) wrapped around the thread. So for attaching to radiator bodies you normally

have this sort of joint, where you have a hard (non-malleable) material to join to. It requires the opposite end to be MIP.

MIP fittings are usually found in big strong thick copper pipe , iron pipe, steel pipe, gas pipe, gas stove, gas oven, gas

heater, gas water heater connection.

Sometimes a household sink tap does not come with a FIP thread end. In the UK - it's normally a standard BSP 1/2" or 3/4"

end.(British Standard Pipe). Sometimes it is MIP FIP end. Before 1980, most water plumbings are done with metal fittings

(copper, brass, aluminum, soft iron) which compress. Most household wall On-Off-valve (2 in above floor) to bathroom toilet,

wash basin sink, kitchen faucet are designed for metal compressible tubing. Thus on-off valves are usually Compression