Plumbing – The Science of Supplying Clean Usable Water and Disposing Waste Water


Plumbing is the science of supplying clean usable water and getting rid of waste water. It involves the installation and maintenance of pipes, fixtures and appliances.

Plumbers work on construction sites as well as in homes and offices. They install new plumbing systems by following building plans and specifications.

Water Supply

The supply of purified water for household consumption, firefighting and other municipal needs. It includes the infrastructure for its storage, transmission and distribution.

Water is extracted from natural sources and/or groundwater (aquifers) and pumped or flowed by gravity to a treatment plant, where it undergoes chemical and biological transformations for disinfection and preparation for storage or distribution.

Once treated, the water is stored in reservoirs that may be elevated above land or sea level, or on-ground or underground. The water can then be delivered to homes, businesses and industries via pipes of various sizes.

Pipes in water distribution systems are typically designed in a grid or looping pattern to ensure that the water always circulates, eliminating dead ends. This also allows damaged sections of the system to be isolated and repaired without disrupting water service. Other patterns of interconnected pipes, such as radial and circular systems are sometimes used, but are less efficient as they require more complex design calculations.


Drainage is the pipework that takes waste water away from your home. It includes toilets, basins, baths, kitchen sinks and washing machines. The drainage system also gets rid of rainwater through gutters and downpipes.

The drainage pipes are usually made of plastic, unlike the water supply pipes which are often metal. The choice of plastic for the drainage pipes avoids rust and corrosion, which can be a health hazard in addition to being expensive to repair.

Plumbers use special tools to inspect the condition of the drainage pipes. If they detect any damage or signs of a blockage, they will use a high-pressure jetting hose to clean the drain. This can clear out a blocked drain without the need to dig up the entire garden. For more severe blockages, they may need to insert a mechanical drain auger into the pipe.

Waste Disposal

Waste disposal involves removing, discarding, recycling or destroying the unwanted materials that are considered waste and that are not needed in order to maintain an efficient environment. This method involves ensuring that no harmful substances are released into the environment and that all wastes are handled properly.

Liquid waste can be disposed of in a CESSPOOL or SEPTIC TANK while solid garbage is often discarded into SANITARY LAND-FILLS which are pits covered with impermeable synthetic bottom liners. These landfills can be filled with a variety of different materials including organic waste (eg. peels and scraps of vegetables, tea leaves, coffee grounds and eggshells), paper, metal, glass, thermocol, plastic, rubber and styrofoam. Some types of hazardous wastes like used syringes can also be disposed of here.

Open burning of wastes can cause toxic fumes and smoke that may be harmful to humans while dumping into rivers or filling land depressions without proper administration can cause problems ranging from soil degradation to leaking harmful chemicals into subsurface water sources. Correct waste disposal methods can also help reduce the amount of garbage that is produced as a result of globalization and industrialization.


As water flows down a drain, it pushes air behind it. Without a vent, this air can clog your pipes or introduce stinky sewer gases into your home. The solution is a plumbing vent pipe that connects to the drain and brings fresh air into the drainage system. Vents protect the precious P-trap seal by balancing air pressure inside your drain lines. When atmospheric pressure is lower than inside the trap, a siphon effect pulls water right out of the drain. The vent breaks this negative pressure, so your trap stays watertight.

A drain waste vent system also removes sewage and greywater from your house, making your indoor air quality (IAQ) healthier and more comfortable. For this reason, ASHRAE Standard 62.2 mandates ventilation for new and existing homes. Star Plus Plumbing


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