What type of copper pipe to use?


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Old 01-21-05, 10:07 PM
sparks n arcs
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What type of copper pipe to use?

Hello,

Well I'm just about to start replacing my galvanized plumbing with copper in sections (connected the galv. and copper with dielectric unions until I'm complete). So I get me a list made out for fittings, pipe and such and when I get to my local home center I am confronted with a choice - Type M or Type L copper pipe. I was unable to find a helpful employee, so I left emptyhanded not wanting to get going with the wrong stuff. Can anyone tell me which type I should be using? And what is the other stuff for? The house has a basement if that makes a difference. And if their is a choice for different types of pipe how come I didn't see a choice for different kinds of fittings?

Thanks-
 
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Old 01-21-05, 10:36 PM
latuszek
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Great question, I would also like to see the answer to this. All I know is that the only difference in type L and type M is the thickness of the walls. I believe type L is better quality (thicker) than type M??
 
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Old 01-21-05, 11:44 PM
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Hi sparks n arcs,
- If I was in your position, and hadn't yet bought any parts, I'd seriously consider PEX. -Much easier to use, and I'd bet on it outlasting copper. I do all my well system installations with it and re-pipe houses and it's great to use.
 
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Old 01-22-05, 02:34 AM
latuszek
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Unless he lives in a place like me I live in a suburb of chicago and ONLY copper is allowed.
 
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Old 01-22-05, 06:54 AM
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If you go copper, go with the "L". Thicker and quieter. The fittings are standard so they don't have types. Good luck with your project.
 
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Old 01-23-05, 04:20 PM
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I agree with Charlie. Check into PEX first. That's all that the pros around here use, unless the homeowner insists on copper or something else.
Copper:
Type M - Thinnest wall and o.k. for interior residential use.
Type L - Medium wall, better, as majak said.
Type K - Thickest wall, for buried outdoor use.
If you're doing re-plumbing from galvanized to "whatever" piecemeal, start on the ends nearest the fixtures, where the galvanized tends to scale up inside and clog worse first.
Good lucK!
Mike
 
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Old 01-23-05, 06:58 PM
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M is for residential use

L is for commercial use

L is required in some states for residential use

L is minimum requirement for all commercial establishments such as restaurants, dental offices, doctors offices, hospitals, grocery stores....etc.

I use L, holds up in cold weather from bursting a great deal better than M.

 
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Old 01-26-05, 04:50 PM
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Here and I'm told in many areas M is not used for potable water lines, only hydronic heating lower pressure lines.

I vote for PEX also.

Gary
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Last edited by Doug Aleshire; 03-11-05 at 03:16 PM.
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Old 02-01-05, 04:22 PM
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Hope you guys don't mind if I put in my 2 cents worth. I teach plumbing code to apprentaces here in California.

The choice of which pipe to use depends on your local code. PEX hasn't been an option here in this part of Cali until lately. Type M is allowed in both residential and commercial applications, and can be burried. There are certain cities however that only allow type L (even in residential) due to bad water conditions.

I do agree with everyone that said PEX, as long as it is allowed. If it is not, type L is the way to go, yet someimtes the cost is double, but it will last alot longer once installed.

Ron
 
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Old 02-01-05, 05:19 PM
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In response to plumberdude,


M soft? That has to be really hard to unroll without kinking, L is sometimes hard to do without an accident going over a rock or dip in the ditch.

Or M hard inside residential application.


If you could clarify.


Here in KY I have never seen M soft, just L.


I prefer K when I used to do underground water services, but L just seems too thin. A great deal lighter to deal with, but the idea is that it lasts for 50+ years, if not longer.
 
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Old 02-01-05, 05:19 PM
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In response to plumberdude,


M soft? That has to be really hard to unroll without kinking, L is sometimes hard to do without an accident going over a rock or dip in the ditch.

Or M hard inside residential application.


If you could clarify.


Here in KY I have never seen M soft, just L.


I prefer K when I used to do underground water services, but L just seems too thin. A great deal lighter to deal with, but the idea is that it lasts for 50+ years, if not longer.
 
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Old 02-03-05, 07:39 AM
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Last edited by DUNBAR PLUMBER; 02-13-06 at 05:04 PM.
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Old 02-03-05, 03:45 PM
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LOL



Thanks for the good laugh.




Funny how this thread started with a simple, good question on how to join dissimilar materials between galvanized and copper, and it switches to product endorsement for a completely, entirely different product.


That in turn is indirect advertising when the thread starter is not asking for pipe preference. He is asking how to join the two products together.


I am sure that sparks n arc would appreciate this "clarification".
 
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Old 02-08-05, 11:03 PM
sparks n arcs
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Great conversation and I appreciate all the suggestions.

Here in the Detroit area of Michigan copper plumbing seems to be still be king. I work in the feild of real estate and get to (breifly) see a great many homes and have witnessed a very few with mysterious grey plastic plumbing with those funny crimp on rings at the connections. I'm guessing that this is the PEX that is all the rage.

I am most familiar and therefore most comfortable with copper plumbing. While I will certainly investigate the PEX plumbing availability, acceptability by the powers that be, and the cost in my area, I may still go 'old school' and use the copper.

I have done very little plumbing, but I do know that I am not pleased with the galvanized that is in my home now.

Since we have gone somewhat --are their fittings that would allow the joining of galvanized to PEX?

Originally I just wanted to know why their are different thicknesses of copper pipe, which to use for my home, and why thier aren't different thicknesses of fittings.No one has made any mention of the fittings and their thicknesses so I am guessing they must be as thick as the thickest pipe.

So which one of you is a PEX employee anyway?
Just Kidding.

Thanks-
 
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Old 02-09-05, 09:00 AM
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Old 02-09-05, 01:52 PM
sparks n arcs
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All the thorough and thoughtful responses have helped alot. Although they have created some more work I'm going back to the drawing board to to some more research. I agree with the statements made before that this will benefit me in the long run.

Thanks
 
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Old 02-09-05, 09:14 PM
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Last edited by DUNBAR PLUMBER; 02-13-06 at 05:05 PM.
 

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