Copper pipe is available in 10- and 20-foot. lengths and in three weights: Type M is thin wall;
Type L lias a medium-thick wall; Type K lias a thick wall. Unless otherwise specified by local
code, Type M is sufficientiy strong for the water supply System in your home.
Copper pipe is always 1/8-inch larger than the
nominal size. Example: 1/2-incli pipe measures
5/8-inch. outside diameter. The actual inside
diameter varies widi the diickness of the pipe wall.
The diicker the wall, the smaller the inside diameter
of the pipe.
In the 10- and 20-foot lengdis, Types K,L, and M
are available in “drawn temper,” wliicli is the rigid
form of pipe. In the plumbing trades, diis usually
is referred to as “liard” tubing because it’s rigid.
The diree types of tubing are also made in
annealed (soft) temper in almost ail the same sizes
as the liard tubing and in the same lengdis.
However, the soft tubing cornes packaged in rolls
rather dian in straiglit lengdis as liard pipe.
For your shopping information, rigid or liard copper
pipe usually is termed “pipe” in home center
stores and building material outiets. If you want
flexible copper tubing, ask for it as “flexible.”
Hard temper Type M or soft temper Type L is recommended
for underground water services,
altiiough local codes may call for the tiiick-walled
Type K for this service. Type M usually is recommended
for the water supply System in you home,
as mentioned above.
Another class of copper pipe, called DWV (for
drain, waste, vent) is available only as rigid pipe
in larger sizes.
As the name implies, this pipe is used for drain,
waste, and vent Unes in the drainage System in
Pipes in sizes of 3 / 8 – , 1/2-, 3/4-, and 1-inch are
suitable for home water supply Systems. The
1-1/4-, 1-1/2-, 3-, and 4-inch sizes are for DWV.
Still another class of copper tubing, designated ACR,
is for air conditioning and réfrigération êeld service.
ACR is designated by the actual outside diameter, as
opposed to other types of copper pipe. It is available
in uncharged lengdis of 20 feet in draw (hard)
temper and 50 feet in soft temper.