PVC pipe is an inexpensive and long-lasting option for home plumbing. Not only that, but it is much easier to work with than older types of pipe, meaning you no longer have to be a plumbing contractor to complete basic plumbing projects. If you are interested in learning more about PVC plumbing pipe, read on. This article will present two must-know tips for working with PVC.
1. Sand cut ends.
One of the nicest things about working with PVC is that it can be easily cut down to whatever size you need. (This task is best accomplished using an inexpensive PVC saw, by the way). But anytime you cut a PVC pipe, rough plastic burrs are left behind. These burrs can make it harder to fit pipes together. Furthermore, they can slow the flow of water on the inside of the pipe.
For those reasons, it is important to sand away any saw burrs left at the end of a cut pipe. This can be easily accomplished using a piece of 80-grit sandpaper. Just fold the sandpaper into a strip thin enough to fit into the pipe, to help ensure you get all burrs removed from the inside edge.
2. Always use both primer and glue.
In order to prevent leaks, any two connecting pieces of PVC pipe must form a water tight seal. This is accomplished through the use of two chemical substances commonly referred to as primer and glue. The term "glue" is something of a misnomer, as what happens is not actually gluing, but a solvent welding process.
Regardless of what it is called, to form a successful bond both primer and glue must be used. The primer is responsible for removing the glaze from the surface of the PVC. This in turn allows the glue to penetrate the PVC more fully, thus leading to a tighter bond.
Never be tempted to omit the primer as a cost-reducing measure. Using glue alone may result in a bond that is unable to stand up to the pressure and vibration a water pipe is regularly subjected to. This can lead to leaks and--even worse--flooding.
Primer and glue should be applied to both the inside and outside surfaces being fitted together. Allow the primer to dry for a few seconds before coating the pipe with glue. Once the glue is on, you are ready to connect the two halves of pipe together, using a twisting, pushing motion.
Once you get the hang of it, working with PVC is a breeze. But it is essential that you master the basics before undertaking larger projects (which should be handled by professionals such as Joe Klosterman Plumbing). The tips outlined above should prove invaluable as you begin developing your skills.