Corrosion free, sustainable and the lowest failure rate of all piping products, these phrases are a snapshot of the key messages associated with PVC pipe. However, it’s hard to really understand how important these words are if they aren’t given a value. Our industry is fortunate that third party organizations have taken the time to study water and sewer piping products. Take the Utah State University Board of Buried Structures Laboratory for example, they published a study entitled “Water Main Breaks in the USA & Canada: A Comprehensive Study,” in April of 2012.
The survey included all products which have seen substantial use for water applications over the past 50 years including asbestos cement, cast iron, concrete, ductile iron, PVC and steel. The Utah State study found that PVC pipe had the lowest failure rate, which was 2.6 breaks per 100 miles/year, while cast iron has an average break rate of 24.4 per 100 miles/year with the failure ratings of the other products tested falling between the two.
When it comes to sewer pipe, Trenchless Technology, an industry publication, recently performed a survey amongst municipalities. In the survey, it was discovered that 90 percent of municipalities that replied specify and install PVC pipe, with 79 percent stating PVC is the most common piping solution. PVC was also noted as the easiest piping material to maintain by 66 percent of those answering and 52 percent found it to have the longest life cycle.
Needless to say, these two studies prove that the support for PVC is overwhelming but it's important to remember that these studies are just a snapshot of the entire value that PVC brings to the table. Feel free to further explore the benefits of PVC pipe by learning about this sustainable, cost efficient piping solution that is committed to the environment with the additional information that is provided below.