Choosing The Right Piping Material For Plumbing:

When it comes to navigating plumbing projects, one of the first aspects of the job is to consider which type of material to use. Both metal piping and plastic piping materials can accomplish most plumbing, draining, and fluid relocation tasks, but which material is better? 

Choosing The Right Piping Material For Plumbing:
Choosing The Right Piping Material For Plumbing:

Some contractors are partial to plastic piping materials due to their lower weight and price point; however, many old schoolers still believe that metal piping is the best option for most applications.

Piping Material Options

There are several different types of materials that are used for piping applications. Each material offers its unique advantages and disadvantages. Due to hazardous leaching effects and water safety standards, certain metals cannot be used for plumbing applications. The metals and plastic materials that are most utilized for plumbing installations include:

black pipe

Copper tubing

Stainless steel

Brass tubing

Galvanized metal

Plastic pipe

Steel Pipe


Whether your application requires galvanized, black coated, or uncoated steel pipe products, steel provides outstanding strength, toughness, and durability. Steel is a versatile, cost-effective solution for water/sewer plumbing and pipeline systems.

Galvanized Steel Pipe


Galvanized steel pipe features a protective zinc coating that helps prevent corrosion, rust, and the buildup of mineral deposits, thereby extending the pipe’s lifespan. Galvanized steel pipe is most used in plumbing and other water-supply applications. In addition, galvanized piping materials provide a lower-cost alternative to steel, providing rust-free protection for up to 30 years while maintaining comparable strength with a durable surface coating.

Black Steel Pipe


Black steel pipe contains a dark-colored iron-oxide coating on its entire surface and is used for applications that do not require galvanization protection. Black steel pipe is mainly used to transport water and gas in rural and urban areas and deliver high-pressure steam and air. Thanks to its high heat resistance, it is commonly used in fire sprinkler systems. Black steel pipe is also popular for other water transfer applications, including potable water from wells and gas lines.

304 Stainless Steel Pipe


Stainless steel alloy 304 offers high corrosion resistance, superior durability, enhanced strength-to-weight ratio, fair thermal and electrical conductivity resistance, ease of fabrication, cleaning, and non-magnetic and hardenable by cold working. Premium 304 stainless steel pipe also can be used for transporting liquids.

Brass Tube/Pipe


Though brass piping is not as standard as it once was, it’s still used today for water supply and drain lines, as well as gas lines. Brass, an alloy made of copper and zinc, is highly resistant to corrosion, and if a lead-free brass alloy is chosen, it is considered safe for drinking water. Because it is a relatively soft metal, brass tube/pipe can be installed with a tight seal, preventing leaks.


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