What’s the difference between plumbing ABS and PVC pipe? Which one should I use?
For those of us in Atlanta, we may not always be thinking about what our plumbing needs may be. We head to a store, and we start to see there are various types of piping and get overwhelmed. That's why it's always the best idea to work with a licensed plumber that can first assess your current plumbing needs and then know whether to purchase ABS or PVC based piping.
When you're looking for your Atlanta Plumbing Contractor, you want to make sure they have only licensed plumbers and can help to explain the major differences between ABS and PVC pipe.
What are their differences?
The easiest way to differentiate easily between ABS and PVC pipe is that an ABS pipe is usually black, and a PVC pipe is usually white. Also, there's an additional material composition in ABS, which is bisphenol-A. This is usually shortened to BPA based plastics.
It's a specialized material coating put into the pipe to make it a lot more durable. According to the FDA, there is a lot of discussion about BPA, but currently, at the levels that it's used, especially in ABS pipes, it is safe for usage for humans.
ABS pipes are easier to connect as they only need one step to connect them with a specialized cement just for pipes, whereas PVC based pipes need to be first primed with one type of material and then can be connected via the cement.
This doesn't mean that PVC doesn't have its own major advantages as well. While ABS may be more durable, it's also harder to make PVC more flexible and easier to work with when needing to customize the piping flow. As you work with a licensed plumber from your Atlanta Plumbing Contractor, they'll be the first to let you know each plumbing system is unique.
In addition, PVC helps to reduce the sound of water flowing through the pipes as it muffles the noise.
Which one should I use?
Your licensed plumber will tell you that there's no clear answer. It all depends on the situation. For example, if you're looking to replace your pipes underground where it can get cold, even in that Atlanta heat, then you'll want to stick with more durable ABS pipes. On the flip side, if you're only focusing on your residential indoor plumbing, you want to stick with the more convenient PVC pipes that are also a lot quieter.
Keep in mind that it's essential to know, and any Atlanta Plumbing Contractor will tell you, that it's not a good idea to connect ABS and PVC pipe together, so for a major system, your licensed plumber is only going to want to stick with one type of pipe.
Another thing to consider is that when you're working with a licensed plumber, let them decide which pipe to use as they're the experts and will know which will become more cost-effective and superior for the job.