Issue #40 Plumbing Systems March 9, 2005


Contents: Issue #40
Plumbing Systems

  1. Basics: Glossary, History, Systems & Components
  2. Sewerage: Wastewater, Wells & Septic, New BC Regs
  3. Drainage: Stormwater, Drainage, Backups, Greywater
  4. Components: Pipe Types, Manifold, DHW, Backflow
  5. Fixtures: New Faucets, Toilets, Treating Drinking Water
  6. Issues: Mistakes, Noise, Water Hammer, Care & Repair
  7. More: Rehab Guide, Polybutylene Lawsuit, Outhouses
  8. Kenís Top Pick: If You Have Time To Surf Only One Site

1. Basics: Glossary, History, Systems & Components

Glossary of Plumbing Terms
As you probably know, ABS is not the term used to describe that well-defined six-pack on your midriff. Keidel offers you this large and easily searchable glossary of plumbing terms.

Articles On The History Of Plumbing
Thanks to The Plumber.com you can read up on the history of the plumbing industry, terminology, inventions, baths, boilers, toilets, companies, and even plagues & epidemics.

Plumbing Systems & Components
These simple drawings and explanations from the Home Tips site give you a quick overview of the different systems and components used in residential plumbing.


2. Sewerage: Wastewater, Wells & Septic, New BC Regs

Onsite Wastewater Resources
Here are some articles and resources for onsite wasterwater treatment and dispersal from the U of Arizona. Included are background, fundamentals, design and reference information.

Wells & Septic Systems
A good overview of wells and septic systems, this CMHC brief (with diagrams & links) explains types, components, inspection checklists, and water quality and health issues.

New BC Sewerage Regulations & Practices Manual
On May 31st the new BC Sewage System Regulation takes affect. The BC Ministry of Health site has a copy of the regs, and a handy Sewerage System Standard Practice Manual.


3. Drainage: Stormwater, Drainage, Backups, Greywater

Low Impact Development For Stormwater Management
Some developments can lower their site servicing costs using specific design principles. This US NAHB report outlines these, and gives you actual cost saving examples and links.

Perimeter Drainage Installation Diagrams
Once again good Ďol Dr. Joe Lstiburek provides us with some detailed drawings. These show the recommended installation of perimeter drain pipes for crawlspace and basement homes.

Avoiding Basement Flooding From Drainage Systems
This report form CMHC covers different sewer backup and/or flooding problems that might arise with drainage and sump pump systems, as well as their causes and tips for prevention.

Greywater Treatment & Use
Greywater is all wastewater except toilet and food wastes. As shown on this Greywater site, it can be recycled to lower your water consumption, save money, and help the environment.


4. Components: Pipe Types, Manifold, DHW, Backflow

Types Of Pipes
Wikipedia is an online dictionary that is constantly being updated by users. Here you can find a brief description of a number of different types of piping used in plumbing systems.

Plastic Plumbing Manifold
The Toolbase site provides a report on new plastic plumbing manifolds, which act as control centres for hot and cold water. They feed flexible supply lines that run to individual fixtures.

Domestic Hot Water Heating Systems & Tips (PDF FILE)
DHW system types, selection, demand calculations, annual cost (US dollars) comparisons, new innovations, energy, safety and maintenance tips are covered by NREL.

Backflow & Cross Connection Problems & Solutions
The USC Foundation for Cross Connection Control site has info on backflow basics, hazards, and types, as well as the different backflow prevention methods and products.


5. Fixtures: New Faucets, Toilets, Treating Drinking Water

New Residential Faucets
You can find out more about new options for residential faucet mechanisms (valve types), kitchen and commercial- style models, and drinking water units in this HGTV article.

Choosing a Toilet
Fine Homebuilding offers you a great overview of new toilets, including issues with low-flow systems, luxury and special needs products, composting types, and selection tips.

Drinking Water Treatment Systems
If water quality is an issue, check out this article from the U. of North Carolina. It covers quality problems and recommended treatments, along with an overview of the systems available.


6. Issues: Mistakes, Noise, Water Hammer, Care & Repair

Ten Common Plumbing Mistakes
Learning form the errors of others can save you both time and money. In this article Fine Homebuilding summarizes ten of the common plumbing mistakes, including solution methods.

Plumbing Noises In Multi Family
Noise from plumbing systems can be a problem, especially in multi-family projects. CMHC researched this issue and provides this report with results and recommendations.

Water Hammer
Builders Websource offers you a Tech Note on water hammer, explaining what it is, traditional solutions, design tips and examples, troubleshooting, and installation of arrestors.

Plumbing Care & Repair
Either you or your homeowner may get value from this online Plumbing Care & Repair Handbook from The Plumber. It has tips on using and troubleshooting all system components.


7. More: Rehab Guide, Polybutylene Lawsuit, Outhouses

Plumbing Rehab Guide (PDF FILE)
For renovators, the HUD Rehab Guide has great info on new products and procedures for upgrading plumbing systems. Itís is a big document, with plumbing about half way down.

Polybutylene Class Action Information
Some homes have suffered water damage from poor quality polybutylene pipe installations. Poyner Baxter, class action lawyers, offer case background and claims information here.

Outhouses Of America Tour
For memories sake, ideas for your cabin, or to show your kids what it used to be like, nothing beats these Official Outhouses of America pictures, articles and stuff on the outdoor biffy.


8. Kenís Top Pick: The NAHB Toolbase Site

The NAHB Toolbase Site
The NAHB Toolbase site has lots of good articles, reports, resources and links to information, specifically for building industry members. Check out their Plumbing section here.


Dittie For Today: On Thinking Outside Of The Box

In the men's room at work, the boss had placed a sign directly above the sink. It had a single 
word on it -- 'Think!' 

The next day, when he went to the men's room, he looked at the sign and right below, immediately above the soap dispenser, someone had carefully lettered another sign which read -- 'Thoap!'   




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 © Copyright 2005               Ken Farrish               All Rights Reserved
ISSN: 1703-5597 - National Library of Canada
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