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Revision as of 20:05, 21 December 2006 by (talk) (→‎Copper)
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The art or science of conveying stuff around using pipes. Sometimes metaphorically cf.Internet Plumbing.

The name derives from the Latin plumbum through OFr plomb meaning lead [ref SOED]. Nowadays lead is almost completely absent from pipework, although part of the traditional plumbing craft training is sheet leadwork.


In general 'Plumbing' refers to hot and cold water systems.

Hot Water

Is made from cold water by Domestic Hot Water Systems

cold water

is best for drinking


Plumbing for Gas is more commonly referred to as 'Gas Fitting' or 'Gas Installation'. It is regulated by law: specifically the Statutory Instrument known as the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998



  • Lead piping is no longer installed. Much lead pipe remains in use.
  • In hard water areas, scale forms inside the pipe and prevents water contacting the lead directly. Amount of leaching is very low in these circumstances, and not generally regarded as problematic.
  • In soft water areas, scale does not form and the water continues to have direct access to the lead pipe walls. Lead leaching levels are significantly higher than with lead pipe in hard water areas.


  • Fishtanks should not be filled with water from newly fitted copper piping, as the water's copper levels are typically too high for fish survival.