Black plastic pipe fittings....??

Discussion in 'Homestead Construction' started by greg273, Jun 9, 2011.

  1. greg273

    greg273 Well-Known Member

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    We're wanting to run 700' of waterline from a private well to our house, using the black PE pipe. Anyone work with this stuff? I never have. What sort of fittings are available? I've seen both brass and plastic fittings. They come in 400 foot rolls for the 3/4", so we'll need a connector fitting, plus various fittings for a hydrant or two in the yard. I'm also curious if 3/4" pipe will be of a sufficient size. We wont be running the house from it, just filling up the cistern, so a relatively low flow and or pressure is acceptable. Any advice would sure be appreciated.


    thanks!
    greg
     
  2. oldasrocks

    oldasrocks Well-Known Member

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    We've always used the grey plastic fittings and hose clamps
     

  3. oneokie

    oneokie Well-Known Member

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    If the money is available, go with a larger size pipe. Flow through 3/4" at the end of a 700' run will not be much.
    There are many different fittings available for use with the PE pipe. Be sure you use 100% stainless steel clamps. And use some type of tracer so that if you have to dig it up later, you can easily find it with a metal detector. A crushed soda or beer can in the ditch every 25-50 feet can save a lot of digging.

    One other caution: make sure you bury it deeper than gophers or moles work. They love to chew on PE plastic. Where ever you have a riser, shield the riser with PVC or metal pipe.
     
  4. Harry Chickpea

    Harry Chickpea Well-Known Member Supporter

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    For that purpose, 3/4" is fine. Be aware that there are a couple of grades. The thicker one is obviously a lot more expensive, but far more resistant to crimps and crushes. It also will stand higher pressures.

    Rolling out the pipe by hand is interesting. Once you remove the bands, it wants to imitate a herd of cats. It'll also want to make tight little loops of those big loops as you roll it. Keep a roll of duct tape and pocketknife handy. If it starts to get unwieldy, tape strap it. Go slow. Two people is better if neither is in a rush.

    If you use the thin stuff and get a crimp, cut the section out, get a joiner and a propane torch. Heat one end of the black pipe lightly with the torch, insert the joiner and let cool. THEN, heat the other pipe end to be joined the same and then play the torch on the very tip end. When you push it onto the joiner, the tip end will make a full seamless joint to the other section. It takes practice to get the heating and timing right though.
     
  5. Darren

    Darren Still an :censored:

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    I've had to dig up water runs installed by the previous owner where the metallic barbed fittings using clamps have rotted out or somehow the plastic connector was broken. I will not use the barbed fittings for those reasons.

    Since then I've used brass compression fittings simply because I don't want to dig a line up again. Those fittings will probably outlast you. You'll have to buy two inserts for each butt connector. The inserts go inside the pipe to prevent the compression fitting from crushing the pipe when you screw the end pieces in. There is a built in clamp on each end.

    If you will never need faster flow, 3/4" may work. With 700' of line you will see a pressure drop from friction loss. As you increase pipe size you decrease friction loss. If the pipe runs uphill from the source you will lose pressure from the elevation change. If the pipe runs downhill from the source you will gain pressure.

    I use the heaviest poly (200 psi) I can buy for the thicker wall. When you put the pipe in it's best to use a sand bed and do not allow any rocks near the pipe or in the backfill material. I always cover the pipe with sand and then add excavated material.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2011
  6. HeelSpur

    HeelSpur Well-Known Member

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    Just want to add 1 thing, on the fittings there are barbs, make sure your clamp is over the barbs. Some fittings have them all the way and some only have a few barbs.
     
  7. beowoulf90

    beowoulf90 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    3/4" might be a little small, if you can run 1" it would be better.. But if you insist on 3/4" then be aware that there will be /could be substantial pressure loss and flow. If the only thing you were connecting was the cistern, then I would say go for it, but for each hydrant you add there will be less flow and pressure. If I was doing this commercially I wouldn't be allowed to run it that small.. For example fro every hose bibb/hydrant it is counted as 3 fixture Units. For 700' of 3/4" pipe @ 46-60 psi I'm only allowed 4 fixture units, so if I have 2 hydrants, I'm already above the allowed FU's. This is not to say it won't work, just what is recommended by the Uniform Plumbing Code..

    Now if you can do it in 1" pipe, it would give you 10 FU's which would cover 2 hydrants and still fill the cistern...

    If you are using the 3/4" because of cost or availability, then I would say go for it, but realize it is undersized...

    Hope that helps
     
  8. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Before you try to unroll it lay it in the sun. Then cut the bindings so it can spring open a little bit. As it warms carefully push the pipe against the roll so that it gets larger. It will take a couple of hours of setting in the sun with repeated unrollings to get it straight but if you are careful you won't have any crimps.

    I've done 1 1/2" by myself that way and it works.

    Plastic barbed couplers and stainless clamps worked fine.
     
  9. Darren

    Darren Still an :censored:

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    Here's a picture of the typical brass compression fittings available. If you use these just make sure you buy the same fittings, IPS or CTS, as the pipe. I use the tees a lot. I've installed extra tees at future locations of hydrants or stubbed off future lines to something I'm planning on building like a green house. I've installed the pipe, capped the end that will eventually tie to the hydrant and left the hydrant end exposed above ground. The trapped air prevents the water from freezing in the line. The same fittings will connect PVC & copper as long as the outside diameter is the same. There are also adapters that go from compression to threaded that you can use to connect the hydrant to the pipe.

    You can also use these to add underground valves so that you can shut down a line if you have to do something like replace a hydrant and not have to turn off the water everywhere. That's a common situation that's come up here many times when a hydrant has to be dug up.

    I like the fact that the fittings are reusable. I've used the fittings above ground in a cellar for a manifold that was taken apart and reassembled several times as I added other water supply sources, filters, cross connections and valves. The silver piece is the sleeve which is inserted into the pipe to prevent crushing.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. SolarGary

    SolarGary Well-Known Member

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    Hi,
    The pressure drop for 700 ft of 3/4 black poly is about:

    at 1 gpm -- 1.05 psi
    at 2 gpm -- 3.5 psi
    at 5 gpm -- 37 psi

    And then add some for fittings, bends, ...
    So, 1 or 2 gpm is easy 5 gpm is starting to require a serious pump or lots grade drop from the well to the cistern.
    Each vertical foot of grade drop gives you about 0.43 psi -- so, to get the 5 gpm, you would need about 90 ft of vertical drop from well to cistern if there is no pump.

    Gary
     
  11. greg273

    greg273 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks everyone for the advice...very much appreciated. I believe we'll go with the 1" pipe... And we're really looking forward to being done with hauling water for awhile...

    thanks again!
     
  12. rancher1913

    rancher1913 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    for a little bit more money you can use the HDPE pipe that welds together. think gas lines but for water. its as indesuctable as you can get and most supply houses will rent the plastic welder if you buy the pipe from them. most utility lines are done with HDPE anymore because of the easy workability. for that distance the bigger the pipe the better--if it was me I'd go even bigger than inch but no less than an inch.
     
  13. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Your time is also important. It may not seem like a big deal now but after you've waited an extra 10 minutes for a tank to fill about 100 times you might wish you'd gone with larger pipe.
     
  14. farminghandyman

    farminghandyman Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I would go 1" pipe.

    I have about 3000 (yes thousand) feet of it on the farm and have had no problems,

    if you have rock back fill with sand around the pipe if you have sharp rock it will work it way into the pipe in time, and you will have a leak, I use 100 psi pipe and it is NSF, rated, or drinking water approved, (the irrigation line is not pproved for drinking water)