The material used for the piping has been an important consideration since plumbing was first invented. Lead and clay piping were used to carry water to homes and public buildings during the early days of plumbing. In the mid-20s, products like cast iron, terracotta, copper, and galvanized steel started to be used as the plumbing began moving into homes. Lead piping was also popular, and before World War II, it was the material to choose for plumbing pipes.
Over the past twenty years, it has been common for Polypropylene Random Copolymer pipes to be used because of their cost efficiency, long service life, and reliability. As a contractor, you may have been curious why some of the most developed companies chose to produce PPR over PE and PVC pipes.
What is the PPR Piping system?
The PPR pipe is a rigid and straight cylindrical pipe made of random polypropylene copolymer plastic manufactured through continuous extrusion. Polypropylene random copolymer is formed by polymerization of propylene with ethylene and butane being found in between the chains. The resin so produced has good transparency and gloss. It has chemical resistivity and a broad range for its melting point. The polymer has the best radiation resistance among the propylene polymers.
The walls of the pipes made from PPR are primarily available in white or green color and external dimensions of 20mm to 110mm, making the pipe walls thicker than PVC. A series of fittings, connecting parts, and attachments for each pipe diameter accompany PPR pipes.
The raw materials that are used for manufacturing the PPR pipes are divided into three categories depending upon the conditions of heat, pressure, and resistivity of chemicals. Type 1 is polypropylene homopolymer, type 2 is polypropylene block polymer, and type 3 is polypropylene random polymer. Type 3 (polypropylene random polymer) is considered the best among them, and thus PPR pipes are made using these.
Characteristics of the PPR pipes
Durability and long-term life
PPR pipe systems have a wide range of fluid and environmental operating temperatures. These pipes are expected to continue to work for more than 50 years. Also, in both cold and hot water systems, the PPR tube provides excellent toughness. These pipes ensure that the hot water systems have reliability under the temperature and pressure strain. Also, in cold weather installations, the PPR pipe can resist structural impacts without risking breakage or cracking compared to other forms of plastic pipe.
Chemical & Mechanical Endurance
PPR piping systems can provide much higher resistance to corrosion with hard particles than traditional plastic piping systems. This is important primarily when the transferred liquids contain corrosive particles in well water or industrial applications. Besides, as opposed to metal piping, PPR is often harmless to a wide range of temperatures in most electrolytes and chemicals. PPR tube is a safe choice for high-water salt usage because of the electrolyte and chemicals’ inertness.
Low Thermal Conductivity
PPR has a much lower thermal conductivity, which means that heat cannot easily be carried from the outside to the pipe’s liquid and vice versa. This factor also reduces the heat loss and gains during cold or hot fluid transfer, resulting in energy-efficient systems and reduced PPR tube insulation costs. The material is also heat resistant and can withstand temperatures up to 95°C without undergoing even a slight change.
Efficient Inner Surface
The inner surface of PPR tubes is smooth, and the friction coefficient is very low compared to conventional piping types. This can reduce fluid transport and distribution pressure losses that contribute to energy efficiency in PPR piping systems. PPR does not get flakes or scales, making it much better to use, unlike metal pipes. The flow of the fluid being carried doesn’t get affected due to the smooth inner surface of the pipes. The inner surface has high resistance to chemical substances. The inner surface of the pipe resists any chipping damage.
High social and environmental economic efficiency
Due to the PPR piping’s low weight, it’s handling, moving, and installation does not require high energy consumption or physical work. Simultaneously, it is incredibly easy to combine, cut, and work, making it economically viable. Again, PPR pipes and attachments are only connected by heat, and no additional chemicals or materials are required. The product is environmentally safe, it has a non-toxic nature, and the water being transported though it doesn’t develop any smell, color, or taste change.
Requirements and Applications
The PPR pipes are used for industrial piping for water transmission, sanitary fluids, food goods for liquids, compressed air, and aggressive chemicals, such as strongly acidic or alkaline solutions. Hot and cold-water piping is essential in residential, industrial, and public installations. Without a proper and verified pipe system, people will always face various types of problems. So, it is necessary to choose the right pipe system like PPR pipes.