Last Updated: Monday, 27th November 2023
Why is Copper Used For Water Pipes?
You might be wondering why is copper used for water pipes and what makes it so durable. Copper is a popular material for plumbing fittings due to its excellent malleability, and resistance to corrosion. Copper plumbing fittings offer several benefits, including durability, longevity, and cost-effectiveness.
Why is corrosion and why is it so bad?
One of the most significant advantages of copper plumbing fittings is their natural resistance to corrosion. Corrosion is a natural process that occurs when metals react with their surrounding environment, resulting in the deterioration of their physical and chemical properties. Corrosion can lead to the weakening and eventual failure of metal structures, causing significant safety and financial concerns.
Fortunately for us, copper is highly resistant to corrosion, making it an ideal material for plumbing fittings which should be durable and long-lasting.
Why is copper used for water pipes?
Copper resists corrosion in two ways: through its natural oxide layer and its inherent chemical properties.
Copper naturally forms an oxide layer on its surface, which acts as a protective barrier against corrosion. When used for drinking water, the protective layer's surface interacts with the gases and salts present in the water, resulting in the formation of an extra layer that is primarily composed of copper carbonates. The color of this layer depends on the water's composition, ranging from turquoise blue to deep green in cold water systems and a brown or purple hue in hot water applications.
In addition to its natural oxide layer, copper also has other properties that make it resistant to corrosion. Copper is a noble metal, which are notable for their lack of reactivity. This basically means it less likely to corrode when exposed to corrosive elements such as water, salt, or acids.
Are copper fittings cost-effective?
Another reason why is copper used for water pipes is that copper is also extremely malleable and ductile, making them easy to shape and install. What this means for you is that they can be mass produced easily, and cheaply.
Furthermore, copper plumbing fittings are cost-effective in the long run. While copper fittings may have a higher upfront cost compared to other materials, their durability and resistance to corrosion mean they require minimal maintenance and have a longer lifespan. This results in lower maintenance, costly failures and replacement costs over time, making copper fittings a cost-effective choice for homeowners and businesses alike.
To find out how to fit copper compression fittings visit our How to Fit Compression Fittings - Installation Guide.
Where can I get them?
PlumbHQ offers a broad selection of high quality copper fittings that are available for same-day dispatch and come with free shipping. Check them out now and get ahead of the game with the rights tools for your next job.
Frequently asked questions
Why is copper used for pipe fittings?
Copper is chosen for pipe fittings due to its exceptional malleability and natural resistance to corrosion. Using copper plumbing fittings offers multiple advantages, including durability, longevity, and cost-effectiveness.
Why is copper resistant to corrosion?
Copper's corrosion resistance stems from its natural oxide layer and chemical properties. It forms a protective oxide layer on its surface, guarding against corrosion. Additionally, copper's nobility as a metal makes it less prone to react with corrosive elements like water, salt, or acids.
Are copper fittings cost-effective?
Absolutely, copper fittings are highly cost-effective. Their resilience to corrosion and durability result in minimal maintenance and extended lifespan. This leads to reduced maintenance and replacement expenses over time, making copper fittings a wise financial choice for homeowners and businesses.