For many centuries, lead was the favoured material for water pipes, because its malleability made it practical to work into the desired shape. (Such use was so common that the word "plumbing" derives from plumbum, the Latin word for lead.) This was a source of lead-related health problems in the years before the health hazards of ingesting lead were fully understood; among these were stillbirths and high rates of infant mortality. Lead water pipes were still widely used in the early 20th century, and remain in many households. In addition, lead-tin alloy solder was commonly used to join copper pipes, but modern practice uses tin-antimony alloy solder instead, in order to eliminate lead hazards.
Plumbing reached its early apex in ancient Rome, which saw the introduction of expansive systems of aqueducts, tile wastewater removal, and widespread use of lead pipes. With the Fall of Rome both water supply and sanitation stagnated—or regressed—for well over 1,000 years. Improvement was very slow, with little effective progress made until the growth of modern densely populated cities in the 1800s. During this period, public health authorities began pressing for better waste disposal systems to be installed, to prevent or control epidemics of disease. Earlier, the waste disposal system had merely consisted of collecting waste and dumping it on the ground or into a river. Eventually the development of separate, underground water and sewage systems eliminated open sewage ditches and cesspools.
Homes have many combustion appliances, such as stoves, water heaters, fireplaces, furnaces, and boilers. Without proper ventilation, these appliances can create harmful gases such as carbon monoxide. Adequate ventilation is absolutely necessary in any home. For example, exhaust fans can play a pivotal role in clearing out harmful gases in bathrooms, cooking areas, and garages. They can keep the air clear of harmful moisture and fumes, while increasing your comfort by keeping humidity levels low.
Need plumbing supplies? We've got everything you need to build an efficient system. Find ball valves for commercial and residential plumbing, filters, filter cartridges and fittings. Looking for an electric or gas hot water heater? We have hundreds, along with all the supplies you need to install them. We carry a complete line of bathroom fixtures, PVC and CPVC tubing. Get all of the industrial plumbing parts and supplies with our inventory.
When you need a plumbing repair, rely on our certified, skilled plumbers. When it comes to the plumbing system in your home, you need someone you can trust to keep it in top working order; someone who can get there quickly and who will do the job right the first time. BGE HOME is your resource for plumbing service and can promptly take care of any repair, from stopping a leak, drain cleaning, fixing a garbage disposal, and everything in between. Whether your kitchen sink is clogged, a faucet is dripping or your water heater springs a leak, our priority is getting your plumbing problem repaired quickly and efficiently. Your satisfaction is our top priority, so our plumber will keep you informed and ensure we are meeting your expectations.
Plumbing fixtures are exchangeable devices that use water, and can be connected to a building's plumbing system. They are considered to be "fixtures", in that they are semi-permanent parts of buildings, not usually owned or maintained separately. Plumbing fixtures are seen by and designed for the end-users. Some examples of fixtures include water closets (also known as toilets), urinals, bidets, showers, bathtubs, utility and kitchen sinks, drinking fountains, ice makers, humidifiers, air washers, fountains, and eye wash stations.
Sewer lines can become clogged in either of two ways: obstructions that build up in the line from usage or obstructions that intrude on the line from outside. Over time, greases, fats, hair, and other items sent down the branch drains can build up on the walls of the sewer line and narrow its capacity. When that capacity is low enough, showers and tubs will not drain and toilets will not flush properly. Another way that a sewer line's capacity can be compromised is when elements outside of the line, namely tree roots, enter the line. Despite the strength of sewer pipe materials, tree roots' growth can be strong enough to penetrate the line.
Similarly, there's no shortage of different types of sinks, too. These range from spare single-bowl models starting under $100 to a farmhouse apron front, double bowl made of copper or cast iron that can run $600 or more. Some are mounted under countertops — called undermount sinks — while drop-in sinks are designed for installation in a preexisting space in your countertop. Whatever the type, sinks can uniquely complement kitchen design as do countertops, cabinetry and other features.