What Are The 3 Types Of Plumbing Systems?

image of a plumbing pipe repair

Plumbing is necessary for a building to be fit for occupancy. Without it, everyday life would be difficult for people. Small homes tend to have simple installations, while large buildings have complex structures hidden behind walls and panels. There are three types of plumbing systems: water, waste, and storm. Each of these has its own specific functions, making them indispensable parts of the whole. You can rely on professional plumbers to design and install these systems. If you have a home, you can also call them when you experience a plumbing issue to schedule a repair or maintenance. Let’s look at each of them below.

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What Are The 3 Types Of Plumbing Systems?

Keep reading to explore the three major plumbing systems.


image of water depicting water plumbing system

Every home needs a water supply line. It carries clean drinking water throughout the house using pipes, valves, and fittings such as angle stops. The liquid typically comes from the municipal water system in urban areas and private wells in rural areas. Water pressure makes it flow from the source to each end-point. Under normal conditions, you can expect the pressure to range from 35 to 75 pounds per square inch. If it drops too low, water might not get to some areas. If it jumps too high, the pressure can damage the pipes. Plumbers can make adjustments to get it right.

It is useful to have an uninterrupted supply of water in your kitchen and bathrooms. You might also divert some liquid to your outdoor sprinkler system, swimming pool, laundry area, and other sections of your property. As you add more structures, a plumber can help you extend the supply lines without sacrificing water pressure. You can also add a water heater for greater comfort during the cold months. Hot and cold water can run in parallel inside the house, allowing you to choose whichever you need. Adequate spacing and proper installation will help them operate as intended.

Leakage is the most common problem in water supply lines. Holes, cracks, and gaps may develop around vulnerable sections over time. These can also emerge overnight, such as from frozen pipes that burst after ice expansion. It is crucial for each branch of the system to have its own shut-off valve. The valves prevent water from flowing into affected sections, thus minimizing water waste. They also make it easier to troubleshoot by isolating the leak and reducing the mess. Water can continue flowing elsewhere around the house while plumbers fix the leaks.

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image of a toilet

The waste system helps homes stay clean and fresh. It gets rid of wastewater coming from the shower, kitchen sink, toilet bowl, and bathroom sink. This sanitary drainage system guides the dirty liquid out of the home and into the sewer system. It does not require additional pumps. Wastewater travels downward to the drains and pipes due to gravity. The curved pipes, called P-traps, prevent sewer gas from moving up by carrying a small amount of water. You can find these under your kitchen sink and toilet bowl. Be mindful about what you flush to avoid clogs.

If you follow the drain pipes, you may also notice a large vertical pipe going up through the roof. It is there to vent sewer gases and keep the atmospheric pressure within an ideal range. A small home will typically have a single stack, whereas larger homes can have several of them. The water supply lines should have enough distance from the wastewater lines to avert contamination. Plumbers can perform periodic inspections and maintenance for your peace of mind. As for the wastewater, the local sewer systems take these to water treatment facilities. These can remove contaminants and recirculate clean water.

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image of a storm drain depicting one of the major plumbing systems

Plumbing designers must also consider the water generated outside the house. It is particularly important in places that get a lot of rain and snow. Unless you deal with it properly, rainwater can enter the home and weaken the foundations. A storm drainage plumbing system takes care of the excess water from the roofs, walkways, driveways, and underground spaces. It is vital in preventing floods around the property and inside the house. It also avoids mold, mildew, rot, and structural damage. If everything is working well, you can shrug off storms knowing that they will always pass without inflicting harm on your house.

Problems can occur if rainwater cannot flow where it should. For example, your gutter may be overflowing with dried leaves, fruits, and animal droppings. These can block the way. Instead of moving to the drain pipes, the water may rush to the ground in awkward places. Sometimes it can even cross the walls and flood the home. Make it a habit to clean the gutters before the rainy season. If you notice stagnant water around your property, do not hesitate to call a plumber for assistance in draining it. Better yet, schedule regular inspections and maintenance visits. Proactive individuals set themselves up for stress-free home ownership.

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As you can see, plumbing performs several tasks around the house. Different systems take care of various needs. The water supply lines give us potable water for drinking, cleaning, washing, bathing, and cooking. Meanwhile, the wastewater lines help us dispose of waste around the house, taking it straight to the sewer system for treatment. Lastly, the storm lines drain rainwater from the roof, driveway, and walkways to prevent flooding and property damage. By carrying excess water away from the house, the structure can remain strong and stand tall for many decades. Seek out a qualified professional plumber if you wish to install or repair any part of your plumbing system.

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Contact Robinson Plumbing, one of the most trusted plumbing companies in the Lehigh Valley, for reliable plumbing services. We offer various plumbing services ranging from drain clogs, water heater replacements, toilet repairs, water leaks, and more. For any plumbing repairs, we always give a wide range of solutions when possible. This allows you to choose the best options for your home and budget.

Find yourself dealing with an unexpected plumbing problem in the middle of the night? No worries! You can count on the expert plumbers at Robinson Plumbing to take care of you. We offer reliable 24-hour emergency plumbing services. You can count on us to get the job done quickly and correctly and, best of all, at an affordable price.

We proudly offer the most affordable and best plumbing services in the Lehigh Valley area. Our plumbers all have the proper licenses and expertise to ensure your satisfaction. All of our work comes with a guarantee. Contact Robinson Plumbing today and schedule your free estimate.

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