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History of Plumbing
The term plumber comes from the Latin word for lead; plumbum and the term plumbarius
meaning lead worker. The earliest forms of plumbing involved use of wood or earthenware but
were later constructed out of lead. Plumbers were skilled lead workers who fitted and repaired
the apparatus of water distribution in and out of a building. In the past, plumbers dealt with
everything involving supply and waste. They soldered, installed and repaired piping, worked on
roofs and gutters, as well as sewers and drains.
Water was first transported by hand and was acquired from wells, cisterns, springs and
rivers until a man named Appius Claudius created a better system of water supply called the
aqueduct. The first aqueduct was built in 312 B.C. and was named in honour of its creator. It was
an impressive 11 miles long.
The Romans took water supply a step further and were some of the first people to develop
hot water and steam systems which they put to use in the creation of the grand public
baths. These baths were extremely popular and were the city centers for gossip and group
enjoyment. They were very luxurious and each city would strive to have the most extravagant. The
baths of Diocletian were some of the most exquisite; seating over 3000 people with mosaic
covered walls and streams of warm water continuously pouring out of beautiful silver.
By the 4th century A.D., Rome had 1,352 public fountains and cisterns, 11 public and 856
private baths. At this point in time, even the most educated Romans did not yet understand
anything about bacteria and the true causes of disease, so other than a once a day emptying and
refilling of the public baths, there was no sanitation system in place. Even with a daily cleaning,
the water still would have been filled with germs from the hundreds of people sitting in the same
tainted, unfiltered water.
The Greeks disagreed with the idea of extravagant public baths and although they
understood heated water systems, preferred to use cold water since it was thought unmanly to
use hot water. A bath was much more solitary and practical for a Spartan. A man would stand in
a polished marble bowl about 30" in height and have a servant pour cold water over his head and
body for a quick, efficient rinse. In their opinion, the colder the water, the better.
Eventually the popularity of bathing disappeared with the fall of the Roman Empire. To
replace bathing, powders, oils and perfumes were used. The focus was more on covering up
unpleasant body odours than keeping clean. The Black Plague began seeping throughout the
world and the lack of cleanliness added fire to the epidemic.
In the 1700s, baths began to regain their former status and were acknowledged for their
healing powers. The connection between keeping clean and staying healthy was slowly being
The very first sewers were built by the Romans between 800 B.C. and 735 B.C. (about 500
years before the first aqueduct). The Cloaca Maxima is one of the largest ancient sewers still in

use. Every street emptied into a channel of the sewer but only certain noblemen had outlets right
to their houses. At that time, the latrines were situated adjacent to the kitchens with the ends of
the sewer for the only source of ventilation. After years of illogical systems of waste removal,
scientists began to understand the link between the illnesses of cooks and maids and the
importance of a new, practical system. Without thinking the situation through, people had been
building pipes in nonsensical ways such as uphill or at right angles leaving the sewage nowhere
else to travel. In some areas the only way to dispose of waste was by tossing it out the
window. Residents had to yell Garden lau (meaning watch out for the water) to warn those below
of what was coming.
Eventually, designs for a better waste system were created, leading to the worlds first
indoor flushing toilet, or water closet. It was produced in 1700 B.C. in the Minoan Palace of
Knossos on the isle of Crete, consisting of a wooden seat and a small basin of water. Sir John
Harington was the next to design a new, improved washout closet in the 16th Century. Nearly 200
years later, in 1775 Alexander Cumming patented the forerunner of todays toilet with his
invention of the S trap.
The national Public Health Act was passed in England in 1848 and became a model
plumbing code for the future. Finally there was a mandate for sanitary arrangement in every home
such as an ash pit, privy or flushing toilet. The government built a new, sensible sewer system
including proper outlets for toilets. From then on, many engineers and pottery makers continued
to develop newer and better toilet designs.
Clean water and safe waste removal is an imperative part of our everyday life. It has been
said, albeit at plumbing conventions, that plumbers through the installation of sanitary water and
sewer systems, have actually saved more lives than doctors!


In 1902, the Plumbing Trade was duly recognized by the government in the City of Manila. Master
Plumber John F. Has become the first Chief of the Division of Plumbing Construction and
Inspection. A Plumbing Code based on the Plumbing Code of the United States was incorporated
into the Building Code for the City of Manila.
In 1935, the National Master Plumbers Association of the Philippines (NAMPAP) was formally
Manila City Ordinance 2411, the Plumbing Code of the City of Manila was enacted and placed
under the Department of Public Services, Manila.
In 1954, the Third Congress approved House Bill No. 962which in June 18, 1955, became R.A.
1378 Plumbing Law of the Philippines upon ratification of President Ramon Magsaysay.
On January 28, 1959, the National Plumbing Code of the Philippines prepared by NAMPAP was
promulgated and approved by Malacaang.
Before Martial Law in 1972, Republic Act No. 6541 otherwise known as the
Building Code of the Philippines was passed with the National Plumbing Code of 1959 as
referral code in full text
The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) adopted the Revised Plumbing Code of 1999
which President Joseph Estrada approved December 21, 1999 pursuant to Section 4 of R.A. 1378
known as the Plumbing Law

How to Recognize Different Types of Pipes

To tackle a do-it-yourself plumbing project, you need to know how to recognize different types of
pipes. Recognizing the different types of pipes within your house is vital to knowing the right repair
The most common pipes used today are copper, PVC, or ABS. However, when dealing with older
homes, you might encounter a number of other piping material. For example, homes built before
1960 used galvanized steel or cast iron DWV (drain/waste/vent) pipe systems.
Heres a quick look at types of pipes commonly used in homes, beginning with the pipes used for
DWV systems.

Cast iron: Commonly used before 1960 for the vertical drain, vent stacks, and sometimes
the horizontal drain lines. Cast iron is durable, but can rust over time. Call a professional
plumber to replace rusted sections with plastic (PVC or ABS) and the correct transition
Plastic: Plastic pipe comes as either ABS (acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene) or PVC (polyvinylchloride). Most homes since mid-1970 have plastic pipes and fittings because its
inexpensive and easy to use. Simply glue the joints using a primer and liquid cement.
o ABS: This black pipe was the first plastic pipe to be used in residential plumbing.
Today, many areas dont allow ABS in new construction because joints can come
loose. Check with your local plumbing inspector if you want to use ABS.
o PVC: This white or cream-colored pipe is the most commonly used pipe for drain
lines. Its strong, untouchable by chemicals, and seems to last forever! The rating
and diameter is stamped right on the pipe.
o Schedule 40 PVC is strong enough for residential drain lines, but check with your
plumbing inspector first. CPVC (chlorinated polyvinyl chloride) pipe has the
strength of PVC but is heat-resistant, which makes it acceptable in many regions
for use on interior supply lines. Schedule 80 PVC is sometimes used for cold-water
supply lines, but it isnt allowed in some regions because it isnt suitable for hot



yourselfers can handle ABS or PVC pipes, but call a professional for cast iron.

PEX: PEX (cross-linked polyethylene) is the newest pipe for residential use. Approved in
many regions of the country, PEX is easy to install because it cuts easily, is flexible, and uses
compression fittings. However, more permanent connections require a special crimping
tool. PEX is three to four times more expensive than copper or plastic.
Steel: Galvanized steel pipe is common in older homes. Galvanized pipe is strong, but lasts
only about 50 years. Before repairing, consider replacing instead. Call a professional to deal
with it.
Copper: Copper pipe is resists corrosion, so its commonly used pipe in water supply lines.
It costs more than plastic but it lasts! There are two common types of copper pipe:
o Rigid copper, which comes in three thicknesses. Type M is the thinnest but is strong
enough for most homes. Types L and Type K are thicker and used in outdoor and
drain applications. To cut rigid copper, you'll need a wheel cutter, tube cutter, or a
hacksaw. Pipes are usually connected with soldered (sweat) fittings and
compression fittings can connect the pipe to shut-off valves.
o Flexible copper, which is often used for dishwashers, refrigerator icemakers, and
other appliances that need a water supply. Its easy to bend, but if it kinks, you must
cut the piece off and replace it. Sections of flexible copper pipe are joined using
either soldered or compression fittings.

Consider longevity and expense when choosing piping.

Common Types of Fittings for both piping and plumbing

1. Elbow

Short radius or regular 45 elbow (copper sweat)

Long radius or sweep 90 elbow (copper sweat)

An elbow is a pipe fitting installed between two lengths of pipe or tubing to allow a change of
direction, usually a 90 or 45 angle, though 22.5 elbows are also made. The ends may be
machined for butt welding, threaded (usually female), or socketed, etc. When the two ends
differ in size, the fitting is called a reducing elbow or reducer elbow.
Elbows are categorized based on various design features as below:

Long Radius (LR) Elbows radius is 1.5 times the pipe diameter
Short Radius (SR) Elbows radius is 1.0 times the pipe diameter
90 Degree Elbow where change in direction required is 90
60 Degree Elbow where change in direction required is 60
45 Degree Elbow where change in direction required is 45

A 90 degree elbow is also called a "90 bend" or "90 ell". It is a fitting which is bent in such a
way to produce 90 degree change in the direction of flow in the pipe. It is used to change the
direction in piping and is also sometimes called a "quarter bend". A 90 degree elbow attaches
readily to plastic, copper, cast iron, steel and lead. It can also attach to rubber with stainless steel
clamps. It is available in many materials like silicone, rubber compounds, galvanized steel, etc.
The main application of an elbow (90 degree) is to connect hoses to valves, water pressure
pumps, and deck drains. These elbows can be made from tough nylon material or NPT thread.
A 45 degree elbow is also called a "45 bend" or "45 ell". It is commonly used in water supply
facilities, food industrial pipeline networks, chemical industrial pipeline networks, electronic
industrial pipeline networks, air conditioning facility pipeline, agriculture and garden production
transporting system, pipeline network for solar energy facility, etc.
Most elbows are available in short radius or long radius variants. The short radius elbows have a
center-to-end distance equal to the Nominal Pipe Size (NPS) in inches, while the long radius is
1.5 times the NPS in inches. Short elbows are widely available, and are typically used in
pressurized systems.

Long elbows are typically used in low-pressure gravity-fed systems and other applications where
low turbulence and minimum deposition of entrained solids are of concern. They are readily
available in acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS plastic), polyvinyl chloride (PVC) for DWV,
sewage and central vacuums, chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC) and copper for 1950s to
1960s houses with copper drains.
2. Coupling
Pipe coupling (copper sweat)
A coupling connects two pipes to each other. If the size of the
pipe is not the same, the fitting may be called a reducing
coupling or reducer, or an adapter. By convention, the term
"expander" is not generally used for a coupler that increases
pipe size; instead the term "reducer" is used. There are two
different types of couplings: slip and regular couplings.
3. Union
A combination pipe union and reducer fitting (brass threaded)
A union is similar to a coupling, except it is designed to allow
quick and convenient disconnection of pipes for maintenance
or fixture replacement. While a coupling would require either
solvent welding, soldering or being able to rotate with all the
pipes adjacent as with a threaded coupling, a union provides a
simple transition, allowing easy connection or disconnection at
any future time. A standard union pipe is made in three parts
consisting of a nut, a female end, and a male end. When the
female and male ends are joined, the nut then provides the
necessary pressure to seal the joint. Since the mating ends of
the union are interchangeable, changing of a valve or other device can be achieved with a
minimum loss of time. Pipe unions are essentially a type of flange connector, as discussed
further below.
In addition to standard, simple unions, other types of union exist:

Dielectric unions are unions with dielectric insulation, used to separate dissimilar metals
(such as copper and galvanized steel) to avoid the damaging effects of galvanic
corrosion. When two dissimilar metals are in contact with an electrically conductive
solution (even tap water is conductive), they will form a battery and generate a voltage
by electrolysis. When the two metals are in direct contact with each other, the electric
current from one metal to the other will cause a movement of ions from one to the
other, dissolving one metal and depositing it on the other. A dielectric union breaks the
electric current path with a plastic liner between two halves of the union, thus limiting
galvanic corrosion.

Rotary unions are unions that allow for rotation of one of the united parts.

4. Reducer
Reducer fittings, bronze threaded (left) and copper sweat
Main article: Reducer
A reducer allows for a change in pipe size to meet hydraulic
flow requirements of the system, or to adapt to existing
piping of a different size. Reducers are usually concentric but
eccentric reducers are used when required to maintain the
same top- or bottom-of-pipe level. Material ASTM A234
5. Olets
Whenever branch connections are required in size where reducing tees are not available and/or
when the branch connections are of smaller size as compared to header size, olets are generally
used. The following are few configurations of olet connections:

Flanged Olet
Socket-Weld & Threaded Olet
Lateral & Elbow Olets
Nipple Olet
Butt-Weld Olet
Swage Nipples

6. Tee
Pipe tee (copper sweat)
A tee is the most common pipe fitting. It is available with all
female thread sockets, all solvent weld sockets, or with
opposed solvent weld sockets and a side outlet with female
threads. It is used to either combine or split a fluid flow. It is
a type of pipe fitting which is T-shaped having two outlets, at
90 to the connection to the main line. It is a short piece of
pipe with a lateral outlet. A tee is used for connecting pipes
of different diameters or for changing the direction of pipe
runs. They are made of various materials and available in
various sizes and finishes. They are extensively used in
pipeline networks to transport two-phase fluid mixtures. They are categorized as:


When the size of the branch is same as header pipes, equal tee is used and when the branch size
is less than that of header size, reduced tee will be used. Most common are tees with the same
inlet and outlet sizes. Some of the industrial tees are Straight Tee, Reducing Tee, Double Branch
Tee, Double Branch Reducing Tee, Conical Tee, Double Branch Conical Tee, Bullhead Tee,
Conical Reducing Tee, Double Branch Conical Reducing Tee, Tangential Tee, and Double
Branch Tangential Tee.
The above tees are categorized on the basis of their shapes and structure. They can also be
classified on the basis of the application they are required to perform.
7. Cross
Cross fittings are also called 4-way fittings. If a branch line passes completely through a tee, the
fitting becomes a cross. A cross has one inlet and three outlets, or vice versa. They often have
solvent welded socket ends or female threaded ends.
Cross fittings can generate a huge amount of stress on pipe as temperature changes, because they
are at the center of four connection points. A tee is steadier than a cross, as a tee behaves like a
three-legged stool, while a cross behaves like a four-legged stool. (Geometrically, "any 3 noncollinear points define a plane" thus 3 legs are inherently stable.) Crosses are common in fire
sprinkler systems, where stresses caused by thermal expansion are not generally an issue, but not
in plumbing, due to their extra cost as compared to using two tees.
7. Cap
Pipe cap (copper sweat)
A type of pipe fitting, usually liquid or gas tight, which covers the end of
a pipe. A cap is used like plug, except that the pipe cap screws or
attaches on the male thread of a pipe. A cap may have a solvent weld
socket end or a female threaded end and the other end closed off. In
plumbing systems that use threads, the cap has female threads. Industrial
caps can be round, square, rectangular, U-shaped, I-shaped and may have
a round hand grip or a flat hand grip.
If a solvent weld cap is used to provide for a future connection point, several inches of pipe must
be left before the cap. This is because when the cap is cut off for the future connection, enough
pipe must remain to allow a new fitting to be glued onto it.
8. Plug
A plug closes off the end of a pipe. It is similar to a cap but it fits inside the fitting it is mated to.
In a threaded iron pipe plumbing system, plugs have male threads. Some of the popular types of
plugs are:

Mechanical pipe plug

Pneumatic disk pipe plug


Single size pneumatic all rubber pipe plug

Multi-size pneumatic pipe plug
Multi-size flow-through pipe plug
High pressure pipe plug

9. Nipple
A short stub of pipe, usually threaded steel, brass, chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC) or
copper; occasionally just bare copper. A nipple is defined as being a short stub of pipe which has
external male pipe threads at each end, for connecting two other fittings. Nipples are commonly
used for plumbing and hoses, and second as valves for funnels and pipes.
10. Barb
Hose barb fittings made of brass
A "barb" or "hose barb" fitting is used to connect flexible hose or
tubing to pipes. A barb fitting typically has a male-threaded end used
to mate with female threads. The other end of the fitting has either a
single- or multiple-barbed tube having a tapered stub with ridges,
which is inserted into a flexible hose to secure it. An adjustable
worm drive screw clamp or other type of clamp is often added, to
help to keep the hose from slipping off the barbed tube. Barb fittings
can be made of brass for hot water applications, while plastic may be used for cold water; brass
is considered more robust and durable for heavy-duty use. The barb fitting can be either elbowshaped or straight.
11. Valves
Water shutoff valves below a kitchen sink
Valves are equipment designed to stop or regulate flow of any
fluid (liquid, gas, condensate, stem, slurry, etc.) in its path. Valves
are categorized depending on their applications like isolation,
throttling, and non-return. Various type of valves are available
depending upon the type of construction as follows:

Gate valve used for isolation only

Plug valve used for isolation only
Globe valve used for throttling
Butterfly valve used for isolation as well as throttling
Check valve used for preventing reverse flow (non-return)
Diaphragm valve used for isolation as well as throttling
Ball valve used for isolation only
Needle Valve used to control flow rate to a desired amount




Building Design 2
History of plumbing (world)
History of plumbing (Philippines)
Types of Pipes and Fittings

Submitted by:
Bautista, Kurt Russel M.
Submitted to:
AR. Lester Garcia