Any time a plumber comes to your house, you may tend to give him/her a blank stare because what they’re saying sounds like French or another language you have no idea how to speak or translate. This can be frustrating or hysterical; however you’re feeling for the day. The following are a few general words or phrases a plumber might use when coming to work for you.
Teflon Tape – This is a thin white tape used on the threads of a pipe to help seal it better when connecting portions of piping. This can be used on both metal and plastic pipe.
Pipe Dope – This is also known as pipe thread compound. It’s used to lubricate pipe threads and also seals them much like Teflon tape would. This can come in a can with an applicator that looks like a small brush or in a tube that you can squeeze and apply using your finger.
Pipe Glue – The proper name for this is pipe weld or pipe solvent. It’s used to attach plastic piping together. It most generally comes in various sizes of cans and will have an applicator that looks like a cotton ball.
Pipe Cleaner – This is a clear watery substance that cleans plastic piping and prepares it for gluing. It can be used for both PVC and CPVC. This also comes in various can sizes and will have an applicator that looks like a cotton ball. There is also pipe primer that is also watery but this will have a purple color to it so that you can see where it was applied to the pipe in order to ensure thorough cleaning. This is the same as pipe cleaner the only difference is the color.
Nipple – This usually refers to a small piece of steel piping.
Elbow – This is a corner-like piece of piping. This term is used for all types of piping whether metal or plastic. When connected, it allows the the piping to go a different direction. These can have threading on the ends or no threading and can come in 22, 45, or 90 degree angles.
Coupling – This is a simple item which has two open ends allowing two pieces of pipe to be connected together. This has no bends and is straight.
Fernco – This is a rubber coupling specifically made for drain pipes.
Now you can feel confident when you have a plumber come over! No more guessing at what they’re saying.