Top Five Design Tips for Your Plumbing Project

Most people think that since plumbing is behind the walls there is little value to a good design. But for the most efficient system that costs the least amount of money to install, plumbing design is essential.

There are three main elements needed in every plumbing system incoming water source, drainage for waste water and ventilation. Water obviously needs to come in and go out of your home through a path that makes sense. You must also include ventilation for the gases that accumulate in your plumbing system. When all of these come together you have yourself a well designed plumbing project.

Top Five Plumbing Design Tips

1) Codes Are Your Friends

Building codes provide a framework for construction projects within and around your home. Plumbing codes are no exception and allow you the freedom to design and build safe, efficient plumbing systems within the guidelines.

When you ignore the codes you run the risk of putting your own family in danger, as well as increasing the chance of property and environmental damage.

2) Plan For the Future

When you are taking on a large plumbing project (whether DIY or with the help of a plumber) it s best to design for your future needs as well as the necessities of today. Maybe you ve always wanted an ice maker in your fridge, but haven t purchased the appliance yet. By incorporating that plumbing need into your design the process will be much smoother when you do make that refrigerator purchase.

3) Inspections Must Be Passed

Just as following codes are important, the plumbing project in your home must pass an inspection. It is not enough to simply read up on the codes and follow them while you are working with waste water and ventilation systems. Without a properly designed plumbing project that follows all of the codes and passes the thorough inspection of a qualified (and certified) professional, there is a danger of serious and even fatal diseases occurring within the walls of your home.

4) Plumbing Materials Are Often a Matter of Preference

Whether you should opt for copper, galvanized, ABS or PEX pipe in your plumbing project is difficult to say. Most often ABS is used for waste water and ventilation, but copper is a popular choice for incoming water. More plumbers are choosing PEX, but this type of pipe is harder to work with and may cause headaches for the DIY crowd. Once you have your plumbing design layout you can price out the different types of plumbing material to help you make a decision. Be sure to ask what types of specialty tools and components may be needed for each particular type of piping.

5) Provide Plenty of Drainage and Easy Clean Ups

The general rule is that for every foot a horizontal pipe travels, it must drop 1/4″ to provide decent drainage. Plumbing design involves a lot of calculations in order to come up with the most efficient system. You can also go over and above those bare minimum requirements with handy features like a gravity hot water loop that re-circulates and provides heated water almost instantly at any fixture in your home. Also be sure to include plenty of clean outs along your plumbing lines to make clog removal easier.

Good plumbing design is achieved through education and experience. A plumber or plumbing consultant should be able to guide you through your project and provide an efficient design that covers the three main elements of incoming water, outgoing waste and ventilation. Follow the local building codes, book your inspection and decide which materials are best suited for your project. Don t forget to include future plumbing needs into your design and provide for decent drainage and easy clean outs. Your hard work will produce a top notch job when these plumbing design tips are put into practice.