How Plumbing Works?
Even in the smallest home, residential plumbing appears to be a confusing and complex system of pipes. But, if you take the time to learn and understand the logistics of home plumbing, you’ll see just how straightforward it is and how it works.
Residential Plumbing Basics
Any professional plumber like https://jbplumb.com/ will tell you that a residential plumbing system consists of 2 subsystems— the water supply which brings fresh water into your house and the DWV or Drain-Waste-Vent that takes the wastewater away from your house.
The Water Supply System
The water supply system of your home is responsible for bringing fresh water from your home’s main valve which, if you have municipal water supply, is probably in front of your home, buried in the street. It then routes to your showers, faucets, toilets and bathtubs. In addition, it also routes the fresh water to any of your appliances which require water such as washing machines, dishwashers and heaters.
The arriving water is under pressure. This pressure allows the water to travel in every bends and corner in the plumbing pipes. Also, it allows the water to travel upstairs and anywhere else that fresh water is needed.
Furthermore, as the fresh water enters your home, it also passes through a meter that records the amount of fresh water that you use. In general, there’s a shutoff valve right before and after the meter, making it easier for you to shut down the incoming fresh water when doing a plumbing DIY project.
The DWV (Drain-Waste-Vent) System
After you use the fresh water, it then becomes wastewater that needs to be eliminated from your residence. The DWV system eliminates this wastewater from your home by routing it to the municipal sewer system or a septic tank. While the water supply system requires sufficient pressure, gravity rules in the DWV system.
You should know that all pipes of the drainage-waste part are angled downward which allows gravity to transport the wastewater away from your home.
In addition, the drain-waste system is a lot more complicated than the intake series of pipes. It requires several traps, vents, and other cleaning features to help gravity do its job properly.
As the waste flows down, it also pushes any air in the pipes. And as the wastewater drain away, vents then allow air to re-enter the drain pipes, maintaining the proper pressure for draining. Also, most systems feature a clean-out plug designed to remove the most stubborn waste materials.
Furthermore, you’ll notice that drain pipes are also bigger than their water intake counterparts. This is because they are responsible for carrying away wastewater with other waste material and prevent clogging.