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Copper Pipes

Copper is used in making pipes because it is non-toxic and resistant to corrosion. Copper is so widely used in the pipe industry that for the last 75 years, our water has traveled through a copper pipes. Every year, about a billion feet of copper pipes are installed throughout the United States. Add up the lengths of all the copper pipes ever installed in this country since 1963, and you’ll get more than five million miles.

Why copper?

Some modern plumbing systems now use plastic, but copper pipes are still widely used for most water feeds and central heating pipe work. Copper is still the preferred piping material in the piping industry because of its exclusive properties.

For one, copper is comparatively safer than lead – it is nontoxic and does not harm water. Unlike iron, copper is also very resistant to rust. Aside from this, copper is fairly malleable and easier to transform.

Copper pipe sizes

The size of copper pipes depends on its use. Micro-bore central heating systems usually use 8 and 10 mm copper pipes. Bigger copper pipes (about 12 and 15 mm) are normally used for connecting to separate taps, appliances and other similar uses. Even bigger copper pipes (22, 28 and 35 mm) are used for projects that require long runs – ones that 15 mm copper pipes cannot handle without dropping pressure.

Copper pipes are available in a range of lengths. Bigger trade outlets usually sell copper pipes of three to four meter lengths, but smaller hardware stores and do-it-yourself shops carry copper pipe lengths as short as one and a half to two meters.

Some notes about copper pipe sizes

Some countries (such as the United Kingdom) use the ‘imperial’ sizing system, meaning, the inner diameter of the pipe is measured. In the United States, copper pipes are measured based on their outer diameter. As a general rule, a 0.5 inch copper pipe (measured using the imperial system) is the same as the 15mm copper pipe measured using the metric system).

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