Different Types of Pipes Used in Engineering

Different Types of Pipes Used in Engineering

In the field of engineering, there are many types of pipes. Let us first look at the field of civil and mechanical engineering. In the construction sector, there are several types of pipes. Each has a different function in a building.

In any building construction, piping systems are designed to serve the following primary purposes. Pipes perform several tasks in a building:

  • Supply water throughout the building.
  • Get rid of surface rainwater.
  • Dispose of water from kitchen sinks, bathroom showers, tubs, toilets, and sinks as well as dishwashers, and washing machines.
  • Drain soil and wastewater into septic tanks or sewer systems.

In the building industry, pipes differ in material, size, and purpose. Gracon uses a variety of different pipes dependent on the project and scope of needs. Below we’re discussing the different types of pipes used in engineering.

different pipes used in engineering

Cast Iron Pipes

There are many different types of pipes used in engineering, but one of the most common is cast iron. The main use of cast iron pipes and fitting is to dispose of soil and rainwater.

Cast iron pipes are constructed using a sand cast process in a foundry. In sand casting, molten iron is poured into vertically mounted sand molds. These come in various lengths and thicknesses to suit the purpose. Sand molds can also be custom made for pipes that don’t fit standard lengths or thicknesses.

Additionally, cast iron pipes can also be created by a process called spinning or centrifugal casting. In spinning or ductile manufacture, pipes are created by pouring molten cast iron into a revolving, water-cooled centrifuge. This machine produces a seamless pipe in various lengths and thicknesses.

Cast iron pipes are used in

  • offices
  • hospitals
  • schools
  • industrial structures
  • retail buildings
  • homes

Their main use is to move the waste in sewers, in storm drains, and in vent pipes. In particular, one of the major advantages of cast iron pipes over PVC piping is that noncombustible cast iron prevents the spread of fire. Cast iron also does not burn away so there is no hole through which smoke and flames can engulf the building.

types of pipes

These types of pipes are highly resistant to abrasion. Thus, they are an ideal choice for draining materials from the dishwasher and the garbage disposal. Cast iron pipes are very durable and almost indestructible.

PVC Pipes

PVC or plastic pipes come in three types:

  • Non-plasticized PVC (UPVC) rigid pipes carry cold water.
  • Plasticized PVC pipes with rubber added for flexibility have both lower strength and lower working temperature than UPVC pipes. These are used for insulation on electrical wires or in flooring where a sterile environment needed. PVC pipe in flooring is often found in schools, hospitals, government buildings, and private homes.
  • Chlorinated PVC (CPVC) pipes can withstand temperatures above the boiling point of water. These are used to carry hot water. Also known as polyvinyl chloride, this type of PVC piping has become a very popular plastic in building and construction. You will see it in both drinking water and wastewater pipes. It is being used in window frames, flooring and roofing foils, wall coverings, and cables instead of materials like wood, metal, rubber, and glass. PVC is lighter, cheaper, and easier to work with. It is also durable and long-lasting.

galvanized pipes

Galvanized Steel Pipes

Pipes made of galvanized steel are available in light, medium, and heavy grade steel to fit several purposes in construction.

The galvanizing process coats the steel pipes with a thin layer of zinc in a hot-dip process. This is done to protect the steel from corrosion. Medium grade galvanized steel pipes are used for internal plumbing in the construction of a building. Galvanized pipes are more expensive than PVC pipes.

Stone Pipes

Stoneware pipes come with various internal diameters and different thicknesses. Good quality stone pipes—like fine crystal—make a clear sharp ring when tapped with a hammer.

Stoneware pipes are often used in underground drainage. They are usually laid on a smooth bed of concrete. Soil is then tamped in around them. Not just anyone can lay stoneware pipes. This is a job for specially trained workers.

For this reason, PVC pipes are replacing the less-expensive but more labor-intensive stone pipes.

Asbestos Cement Pipes

Asbestos cement pipes can be found draining rainwater from roofs. They are used to drain soil and waste. They are also used for ventilation. Asbestos cement pipes may have beading around the socket and are referred to as with beading(WB). You may also get them without beading around the socket (WOB). WOB pipes are more common than WB pipes. Both types come in lengths of a little more than two yards.

Asbestos cement pipes are heavy to move and fragile. Their advantage is that they are less expensive than PVC pipes.

concrete pipes

Concrete Pipes

Historically, concrete and precast pipes have been used extensively in construction. Their main use is drainage and sanitation in sewers.

The size and type of pipe are determined by what it is being used for. Joints in concrete pipes can provide water tightness or soil tightness. Concrete pipes can accommodate such challenges as deflection or longitudinal movement or shear or vertical movement.

Concrete and precast pipes must convey liquids efficiently. Plus, they should also:

  • Support the weight of the surrounding earth around them and loads that pass over them
  • Meet a wide range of tasks and withstand heavy loads without additional support
  • Withstand the test of time and are cost-efficient.

Concrete pipes are used in water supply and disposal. They are available in types to meet specific purposes. Unreinforced concrete pipes come in small diameters. They are most often used for drainage of rainwater.

There are also reinforced and pre-stressed concrete pipes in larger diameters are available for major water supply works.

different pipes used in construction

Why Choose Gracon?

There are many different types of pipes used in engineering. At Gracon, our large-scale projects incorporating piping and establishing complicated mechanical systems with use of pipes. We are proud to offer an extensive range of materials and services to industries including building construction, dam construction, hydroelectric construction, piping systems, and underground mining.

Our product is superior. We stand behind what we sell and we take pride in offering our valued clients in government and private businesses outstanding customer service.

For more information on the piping we sell, and to discuss your unique piping needs with a knowledgeable professional contact Gracon, LLC.