Whenever someone thinks about plumbing, they usually think about their sinks, showers, and toilets. However, plumbing is more complicated than that.
All plumbing systems are connected to a series of pipes that have two uses; for us to use and to get rid of waste. Here’s what you need to know about the different types of plumbing systems.
THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF PLUMBING
There are three different types of plumbing systems; sanitary drainage, stormwater drainage, and potable water. Each of these systems has its own unique functions and purposes. Here is a more in-depth look into how these systems operate.
SANITARY DRAINAGE SYSTEM
A sanitary drainage system is what helps get rid of wastewater. This system contains a series of pipes that were designed to specifically dispose of waste. This waste comes from things such as doing the laundry and putting food down the drain. Once the waste enters the pipes, it is then transferred to a local sewer system.
STORMWATER DRAINAGE SYSTEM
You may have noticed those little holes on the sidewalk. Those are known as storm drains. These are used to carry excess water away from a house. Back in the day, the water that went down a storm drain used to go into a sanitary drainage system. And in some areas, they still do. These days, however, rainwater is sent to a storm sewer instead.
Your gutters also play a pivotal role when it comes to draining rainwater. However, if they’re not maintained, it can lead to serious issues.
Here are a few common signs of malfunctioning gutters:
- The paint starts peeling off the house
- The gutters are cracked
- The gutters are split
- Your home has sustained water damage
POTABLE WATER SYSTEM
A potable water system is what enables people to use water within a building. This system is comprised of various pipes that are connected to a single system. A valve can be located on this system, which is used to cut off the water supply. Furthermore, there is also usually a meter that tells you how much water is being used throughout the building.
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A look at the three major types of plumbing systems in order to gain a better understanding of the field of plumbing as a whole.
An Overview of Plumbing Systems
The plumbing in any building serves two main purposes. The first is to bring water into the structure for human use, and the second is to remove wastewater of various types. There are three main types of plumbing systems: potable water, sanitary drainage and stormwater drainage. A good commercial plumber in Las Vegas knows how to do plumbing work within these three systems according to local building codes.
Potable Water System
The potable water system brings water into a structure; this water comes from the community water main. There is a valve on the water main itself for each structure that can be used to shut off its water supply. From there, a single pipe brings water into the structure, and it is then distributed to individual fixtures through a network of pipes. A meter keeps track of how much total water enters the structure.
Sanitary Drainage System
The sanitary drainage system removes wastewater from a building. It consists of pipes that take out human waste and fecal matter as well as wastewater from cooking, laundry, etc. The sanitary drainage system is connected to a series of vent pipes that go through the roof vertically; this allows for the venting of gases and for the entire system to operate at atmospheric pressure. The sanitary drainage system ultimately takes wastewater to the community sewer system.
Stormwater Drainage System
The purpose of the stormwater drainage system is to carry rainwater away from a structure. In older structures, rainwater simply drains into the sanitary drainage system, but in buildings that are more modern a separate system of drains carries water into the community storm sewers. Gutters are a part of the stormwater drainage system visible from outside the structure; other components, such as drains and pipes, are below the ground.Share this post!
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Building a new home requires dedicated planning and considerations before starting with the construction process. If you’re building a new house, you need to consider not only the decorations but also the plumbing, HVAC systems, and construction materials that’ll be used.
It can be stressful and troublesome if you build a home without the right preparations. For instance, a poor plumbing system can cause leaks and major water damage in the future. To avoid problems, you need to ensure that plumbing systems are properly installed.
Here are excellent and safety tips you can use when installing a new home’s plumbing system.
1. Secure Permits
The first thing you need to do before installing a plumbing system is to obtain and secure the right permits. It may take you some time to process everything, but securing permits will help ensure that your home meets all code guidelines and safety requirements. For you and your family’s safety, a permit allows professionals to inspect and check any mistakes in your plumbing design and prevent pipe malfunctions in the future.
2. Think About Your Plumbing Needs
It would be best to consider your present and future plumbing needs when designing a plumbing system. It means that you need to decide where your drain lines, plumbing, and sewer are installed to ensure functionality. Incorporate every present and future water needs in your plumbing system while you can still access it easily and avoid spending money on repairs in the future.
You should also consider your outdoor plumbing needs to ensure that you have enough outdoor plumbing faucet connections that you can use around your house. Consider seasons as well to make sure that your pipes are sturdy and will last despite extreme weather conditions, especially during winter.
3. Centralize the Plumbing System
When installing a plumbing system, installing everything in one place for easier maintenance and repairs in the future is crucial. Some of the appliances you should install together include the following:
- Water Softener
- Water Heater
- Sewer Connection
- Sewage Ejector Pit
- Sump Pump
You can install these together in the basement as it’s the most convenient space to put your system without being an eyesore. If you don’t have a basement, you can install them on the main floor, and inside a utility closet so they’re still properly tucked away.
4. Consider Water Softeners
If you have hard water issues, installing water softeners would be perfect for your home. You should also consider installing one even if you don’t have issues right now to ensure that you’ll be able to solve this type of issue in the future. It’ll be challenging to install water softeners in the future so save yourself from extra payments by installing one while building your home.
Always think from a long-term perspective when installing something for your home. By thinking of your future needs, you can save money and avoid stress from needing to install new appliances for your system.
5. Wet Wall Sharing
Sharing a wet wall can help you save money when building a home. What exactly is a wet wall? A wet wall houses the sewer lines, water supply lines, and vent stacks. Houses typically have separate wet walls for different rooms like bathrooms and kitchen to house the pipes, but you can save money by sharing a wet wall instead. You can make a layout where bathrooms share a wall or a kitchen and laundry room share a wet wall.
You can save money by having a shared wet wall because it’ll reduce the labor and materials you need to install them. It’ll also be easier to maintain and repair your plumbing if the pipes are together in one place.
6. List Down Rooms That Need Water Access
It would be best to consider all the rooms that need water access when designing your plumbing system’s layout. The top 3 areas you need to consider are the bathrooms, kitchen, and laundry area.
Consider how many bathrooms you need when designing a house, and it’s best to evaluate them individually. Will you have a guest bathroom? A bathtub? A Jacuzzi? A Shower? It would be best to list down what luxuries your bathroom will have along with the necessary toilets and sinks.
When designing the kitchen, you need to consider the appliances you will have in the kitchen. You want water lines for your refrigerator, dishwasher, and sink. You should also consider the future renovations you might have, such as adding a kitchen island that needs a plumbing line if you want to install a sink in the future.
- Laundry Area
The laundry area is as important as the bathrooms and kitchen. You need to put the washer connections in the right place so they’re easier to install and use. You should also have a proper drainage line in the laundry area to avoid water buildup on the floor whenever you’re washing the clothes.
Aside from these 3 priorities, you should also have a proper plumbing layout if you want a garden, an outdoor tub, and a pool. Prepare a layout for everything, even the ones you currently don’t need, to make future installations easier.
7. Accessible Shut-Off Placement
You may want easy access to your main shut-off valve in case of emergencies. While others typically place them on hard-to-reach areas, you should opt for an area with easier access. By doing this, you can quickly shut off your plumbing system in case there’s a leak, a ruptured pipe, or even when you just need to do the regular maintenance check. You can prevent major water damage and save money if you can easily access your plumbing system’s main valve.
It can be costly to install new plumbing lines in the future. Avoid unnecessary spending by ensuring that your new home’s plumbing system design that’ll meet all your current and future plumbing needs! Ensure that you have a safety permit, a centralized plumbing system, and backup water softeners if you need them in the future. These simple tips will help you design a well-working plumbing system that will last long.
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There’s so much to learn and remember at the start of trades training. Plumbing courses are no different. From technical terminology, tool names, building codes, and procedures, to just learning the names of your classmates—it can feel overwhelming at first.
However, with good instruction, hard work, and hands-on practice, your understanding and confidence will grow. Before you know it, you’re finished pre-apprenticeship training, completing your apprenticeship, and earning your Certificate of Qualification.
But in the meantime, what are some ways to ease your transition from plumber newbie to experienced pro?
Follow these 5 simple rules, and you’ll do just fine—not just in plumber courses, but throughout your entire career.
1. BUY THE BEST TOOLS YOU CAN AFFORD – AND MAINTAIN THEM
A quality pre-apprenticeship plumbing program will supply students with tools they can use during training, and take with them to begin an apprenticeship.
However, throughout your career, you will need to add to this collection—and any good plumber will tell you, it’s worth investing in the best tools you can get.
A high-end, properly maintained tool will have a big impact on the quality of your work (and will go a long way to prevent frustration and wasted time).
And don’t forget, this includes attire: good socks, boots, safety gear, and the right clothing for working in cold temperatures.
2. MAKE SAFETY YOUR TOP PRIORITY
What’s the golden safety rule of plumbing? Keep your hands out of your eyes, nose, and mouth—and never bite your fingernails!
You’ll be exposed to chemicals and bacteria, so protecting yourself with gloves and safety glasses is key. Of course, you’ll also need to pay close attention when working in confined spaces and at heights, and be sure to follow the safety procedures you’ll learn in plumbing courses.
Your employer and co-workers should make safety a top priority, but ultimately, it’s up to you to protect yourself, apply best practices, and keep alert.
3. ALWAYS CHECK YOUR WORK
Your employer and clients will always expect the job to be done right the first time. Nobody likes call-backs. It’s normal for small details to go unnoticed when you’re just starting out—so take the time to double-check your work.
Invest a few extra minutes to test out the drain you unclogged, the seal you repaired, the pipe you installed…and know your local plumbing codes and standards like the back of your hand.
4. SHOW UP ON TIME (STARTING WITH YOUR PLUMBING COURSES)
Think it’s no big deal to show up to class a few minutes late? Think again. Your instructor, and later on, your employer, will not take kindly to unreliability. What you lack in training and plumbing skills you must make up for in hard work, respect, and dependability.
Plan to arrive early, and make sure you’re ready to learn (and work) with the right tools, a good night’s rest, and a positive attitude.
And even after you’ve gained many years of experience, timeliness will continue to play an important role in delivering superior customer service.
Whether you’re responding to an emergency or making a routine maintenance visit, showing up on time is important for building trust with customers—and proving you’re a true professional.
5. OBSERVE THE PROS CLOSELY DURING PLUMBING TRAINING
You’ll go through several years of instruction to become a certified plumber. Make the most of your trades training and apprenticeship to soak up everything you can from seasoned pros.
This starts during plumbing courses, where you’ll train with plumbers with many years of experience. Keep your eyes and ears open for opportunities to pick up new skills, extra tips, and avoid common errors.
Building the habit of observation and continued learning will serve you well during your entire plumbing career. There’s always something new to discover, and not just from fellow plumbers.
When you’re out on a job site, keep an eye on HVAC techs, electricians, and carpenters to understand related aspects of the building and maintenance process. After all, all of these systems are connected, and it helps to have a sense of the big picture.
Haven’t started training yet, and looking for a top-rated pre-apprenticeship plumbing program?
Your next step is to speak with Admissions. An Admissions Advisor will guide you through the Plumber program, costs, financial aid, how to apply, and more.
Chat live with an Advisor now. Or click below to explore the program in more detail. We’re here to help!
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