Most large cities today pipe solid wastes to sewage treatment plants in order to separate and partially purify the water, before emptying into streams or other bodies of water. For potable water use, galvanized iron piping was commonplace in the United States from the late 1800s until around 1960. After that period, copper piping took over, first soft copper with flared fittings, then with rigid copper tubing utilizing soldered fittings.
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Also, realize that some supply stores you may find online or in a directory are wholesale only and will only sell you supplies if you have a resale or contractor's license. Pretty important to know if you have to shut the water off at the main valve for the house for a repair and THEN find out you can't get the replacement part at Home Depot after you've already taken the fixture apart. Shower valves are infamous for this, since the older ones don't have shutoffs at the valve, which is in the wall, so you can't see it until you're in there - and you can't get in there until you've shut off the water at the main.
Mr. Plumber is locally owned and operated and is the most client-focused plumbing company in the Indianapolis area. Our team has been providing trusted plumbing service, repair, and installation as well as drain cleaning and sewer repair for over 70 years. We believe that WHO you choose for plumbing service is your most important decision in meeting your home plumbing needs.
Water systems of ancient times relied on gravity for the supply of water, using pipes or channels usually made of clay, lead, bamboo, wood, or stone. Hollowed wooden logs wrapped in steel banding were used for plumbing pipes, particularly water mains. Logs were used for water distribution in England close to 500 years ago. US cities began using hollowed logs in the late 1700s through the 1800s. Today, most plumbing supply pipe is made out of steel, copper, and plastic; most waste (also known as "soil") out of steel, copper, plastic, and cast iron.
Get a minimum of three bids. Estimates for an average-sized job should be within a few hundred dollars. Be suspicious of anything that is substantially lower or double the price of the rest, and watch out for hidden fees, like charges for travel expenses. They could be signs of a home improvement scam. A good plumber will not nickel and dime you like this, and many of us will offer free estimates.
Despite the Romans' common use of lead pipes, their aqueducts rarely poisoned people. Unlike other parts of the world where lead pipes cause poisoning, the Roman water had so much calcium in it that a layer of plaque prevented the water contacting the lead itself. What often causes confusion is the large amount of evidence of widespread lead poisoning, particularly amongst those who would have had easy access to piped water. This was an unfortunate result of lead being used in cookware and as an additive to processed food and drink, for example as a preservative in wine. Roman lead pipe inscriptions provided information on the owner to prevent water theft.