Pipes made of steel - Wikipedia
Galvanized steel potable water supply and distribution pipes are commonly found with nominal pipe sizes from 3?8 inch (9.5 mm) to 2 inches (51 mm). It is rarely used today for new construction residential plumbing. Steel pipe has National Pipe Thread (NPT) standard tapered male threads, which connect with female tapered threads on elbows, tees, couplers, valves, and other fittings. Galvanized steel (often known simply as "galv" or "iron" in the plumbing trade) is relatively expensive, and difficult to work with due to weight and requirement of a pipe threader. It remains in common use for repair of existing "galv" systems and to satisfy building code non-combustibility requirements typically found in hotels, apartment buildings and other commercial applications. It is also extremely durable and resistant to mechanical abuse. Black lacquered steel pipe is the most widely used pipe material for fire sprinklers and natural gas.
Most typical single family home systems won't require supply piping larger than 3?4 inch (19 mm) due to expense as well as steel piping's tendency to become obstructed from internal rusting and mineral deposits forming on the inside of the pipe over time once the internal galvanizing zinc coating has degraded. In potable water distribution service, galvanized steel pipe has a service life of about 30 to 50 years, although it is not uncommon for it to be less in geographic areas with corrosive water contaminants.
Plastic pipe is a tubular section, or hollow cylinder, made of plastic. It is usually, but not necessarily, of circular cross-section, used mainly to convey substances which can flow ? liquids and gases (fluids), slurries, powders and masses of small solids. It can also be used for structural applications; hollow pipe is far stiffer per unit weight than solid members.
There are three basic types of plastic pipes:
Solid wall pipe
Extruded pipes consisting of one layer of a homogeneous matrix of thermoplastic material which is ready for use in a pipeline
Structured wall pipe
Structured-wall pipes and fittings are products which have an optimized design with regard to material usage to achieve the physical, mechanical and performance requirements. Structured Wall Pipes are tailor made solutions of piping systems, for a variety of applications and in most cases developed in cooperation with users
Pipe incorporating a flexible metallic layer as the middle of three bonded layers. Barrier pipe is used, for example, to provide additional protection for the contents passing through the pipe (particularly drinking water) from aggressive chemicals or other pollution when laid in ground contaminated by previous use.
Most plastic pipe systems are made from thermoplastic materials. The production method involves melting the material, shaping and then cooling. Pipes are normally produced by extrusion.
Wikipedia about Valves
A valve is a device that regulates, directs or controls the flow of a fluid (gases, liquids, fluidized solids, or slurries) by opening, closing, or partially obstructing various passageways. Valves are technically fittings, but are usually discussed as a separate category. In an open valve, fluid flows in a direction from higher pressure to lower pressure. The word is derived from the Latin valva, the moving part of a door, in turn from volvere, to turn, roll.
The simplest, and very ancient, valve is simply a freely hinged flap which drops to obstruct fluid (gas or liquid) flow in one direction, but is pushed open by flow in the opposite direction. This is called a check valve, as it prevents or "checks" the flow in one direction. Modern control valves may regulate pressure or flow downstream and operate on sophisticated automation systems.
Valves have many uses, including controlling water for irrigation, industrial uses for controlling processes, residential uses such as on / off and pressure control to dish and clothes washers and taps in the home. Even aerosols have a tiny valve built in. Valves are also used in the military and transport sectors.