Copper is a very important material used in various sectors. It’s one of the most frequently used materials for plumbing in Europe and the United States.
But the question is why? Why is copper used in plumbing?
Features like corrosion-resistant lightweight, easy to, minimal tools needed to fit, consistent water flow, etc make copper inseparable and valuable material used in plumbing.
Let’s dig out deep to get the details. First, we are going to know about a brief history and then features and others.
History of Copper
Prehistoric man first used meteoric iron and gold. History suggests that at the same time they also used Copper.
Only a few metals are found in nature as their native form. Copper is one of them. It has a long history. More than 10000 years ago man first used copper.
Otzi the Iceman (3300 BCE) was the proof of that. It was found with an axe which had a copper made head.
Features of Copper At a Glance
Copper has many qualities. Let’s see some of them:-
- It’s malleable
- It’s ductile
- It’s an excellent conductor of heat
- Its corrosive rate is slower than other materials
- Copper is a ready form of alloys with other metal
- It’s a natural antibacterial agent
- It’s 100 percent recyclable material.
- a good electrical conductor
- a good thermal conductor
- easily joined
- attractive color
Copper has some unique features like recyclable and durability. Other materials like PVC piping for water supplies will deplete PVC supplies. But copper is free from this vulnerable feature. Copper is environment friendly as it has minimal impact on the environment than others.
Copper is a bit expensive. That’s why the initial cost of this material is higher than the others. But its durability makes it a wonderful long-term investment.
Why is Copper Used in Plumbing: What’re The Reasons
If you think about lead replacement then copper is the best choice. Copper has a 4000-year history of delivering water. In history, we found that Ancient Egyptians used Copper to supply water around 2150 B.C.
The ancient Romans went further. They used copper for water pipes and cisterns. Gradually it becomes the commonly used plumbing material. By 1940 it became the most used material for plumbing in the developed world.
Benefits of Copper
For delivering safe drinking water there are some features required on a conduit. Cropped made conduit or cropper has some qualities like corrosion resistance, recallability, form ability, dependability and safety.
Most of the cases we observe new technology beats old technology. New products manufacturers say their products are cheaper as cheaper are better, but new and cheap products are not necessarily equal better.
When it comes for plumbing material specifically underground water lines, then better means cropper as it has 2500 years of history of successful use.
Here I have presented some features which make cropper best in plumbing.
Lead is dangerous for health. Exposure to lead may cause various health problems. Some serious health issues like anemia, kidney weakness and brain damage may be caused by exposure to high levels of lead.
Exposure to high levels of lead may cause anemia, weakness, and kidney and brain damage. Very high lead exposure can cause death.
Lead can cross the placental barrier, which means pregnant women who are exposed to lead also expose their unborn child. Lead can damage a developing baby’s nervous system.
Copper tube and fittings are the original lead-free piping materials.
In the service line there are many types of materials used. All but copper is impervious. This means copper has the ability to keep water free from being contaminated.
Copper is such a material which is free from crack leak and rupture. For underground uses material should have durability for these things as thawing, freezing etc may originate the ground to move or settle. And those caused damage to the material used underground.
If everything is done properly then, copper tubes keep water inside and all contaminants outside. 99.9 percent pure copper is used to make copper tubes.
Long-lasting and Reliable
Copper made tubes and other materials are reliable and safe. If you want to have built a reliable safe and long durable underground water infrastructure, then copper would be the best choice.
A plumbing tube made of copper is highly e corrosion-resistant. In many cases, it’s a requirement to set up plumbing pipes under the earth where pipes made by plastic PVC and other materials are vulnerable. Pipes from to rupture, crack or leak.
The initial cost of copper is higher than others but in the long term, it’s an economic solution. Copper is lightweight and malleable. That’s why copper is used in plumbing.
Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)
Why Is Copper Used In Plumbing and Not Aluminum?
Ans: there are some special features prevailing copper that must be needed for any type of plumbing work. On the other hand, aluminum doesn’t have those features. Let’s see some differences.
Between these two metals. Differences we will get the answer why is copper used in farming and not aluminum.
- Copper is the main material used in electrical wiring
- Is malleable which is ideal for gas and water pipes
- Copper doesn’t react with water
These are features absent in aluminum. Beside these features which are not suitable for plumbing.
Why Is Copper Plumbing Bad?
Ans: copper is perfect material plumbing. This is durable, lightweight malleable etc. These features make this material inevitable plumbing. Besides having lots of good features copper has some cons also. That’s the reason why copper plumbing is bad.
Let’s see those bad features of copper.
- It’s an expensive metal
- It may corrode in cold climate and PH level of water
- Copper pipe may burst in frozen weather
- Its requirement more time to install copper than others
- Installation cost of copper pipe is more than others
Is Copper Still Used In Plumbing?
Ans: Definitely. Copper is still used in plumbing.
Features like corrosion resistance lightweight malleable make copper inseparable part of plumbing. Copper is a very favorite material used in the USA and Europe.
Is Copper Pipes In Homes Unhealthy?
Ans: In some particular cases copper pipes in homes might be unhealthy. Say for example if your home run on well water and the water is acidic, then copper would be the problem.
If you have a new home, copper pipe would be an issue. When water stands Idle into the copper pipe, copper may leach into the drinking water. Lead discharging from copper foul water.
When Did They Stop Using Copper Pipes in Houses?
Ans: Copper pipe has been recognized as a standard plumbing pipe since 1950. From finding, it was widely used for new construction and replacement of galvanized steel water supply pipe. But the situation has changed in the last 20 years due to the introduction of PEX plumbing tubes.
Do Copper Pipes kill Bacteria?
Ans: Copper pots were to purify water according to the ancient text of Ayurveda. Study also presents evidence that copper pot has antibacterial activity in distilled water.
How Long Do Copper Water Lines Last?
Ans: Typically, copper pipes last for 70-80 years. But, if your plumbing system is more than 70 years old, then it wouldn’t be worth saving your pipes. Since copper ages, the inner line of the copper pipe has become feeble and prone to make more pinholes.
Which Is Better Copper or PEX ?
Ans: Copper is good for some purposes. It has some good features for plumbing. But copper is vulnerable. It is more likely to freeze as well as break. On the other hand, PEX has the feature of flexibility. It expands if the water inside freezes the pipe. This feature makes PEX resistant against the freezing break.
Here we learn many things about Copper. So, now you have known why is copper used in plumbing. If you find any problem related to copper or copper piping, then just contact with autin’s best plumbing company Plumberson