HOW TO JOIN POLY PIPE

When it comes to water, wastewater and gas pipelines, poly pipe (or polyethyene/PE as it is also known) is hard to beat. The flexible nature of polyethylene pipe allows it to be used in colder climates – where it will not crack – and in situations where rigid pipe would require multiple elbows to make complex turns. Unlike other plastic piping, poly pipe connections do not use glue to solvent weld pieces together. Instead, specially designed fittings seal poly connections using compression – this is why they are sometimes known as compression fittings.

PLASSON has engineered a range of simple yet smart compression fittings to make joining poly pipe easy and reliable. All PLASSON poly pipe joiners feature a unique O-ring design that means the fitting will seal the moment it goes on the pipe – tightening the nuts on PLASSON compression fittings is only neccesary to hold the pipe in place and prevent blow outs.

This innovative design feature means PLASSON compression fittings go on and stay on… and on! They are easy to install with a minimum of tools. All PLASSON poly pipe joiners are corrosion-resistant and made of UV stablilised material for a long service life.

Here’s some step-by-step install guides to show you how easy it is to connect poly pipe with PLASSON:

STEP-BY-STEP INSTALLATION GUIDE FOR PLASSON PLUMBING FITTINGS:

Plasson compression fittings are reliable and leak-free

HOW TO JOIN POLY PIPE OF DIFFERENT SIZES

STEP-BY-STEP INSTALLATION GUIDE FOR PLASSON REDUCING FITTINGS TO CONNECT PIPE OF DIFFERENT DIAMETERS

metric compression reduing fittings for 20 mm 63mm 110mm

Metric compression reducing tees Plasson Australia 63mm
THE BENEFITS OF  PE PIPELINES

Why PE makes sense and cents!

This industry is pumped full of letters and numbers – like SDR11, HDPE, PE100 and PN16.  There is handy information in those codes that explains exactly what amazing PE can do.  And, when it comes to the different grades of PE, or polyethylene, the magic of what each one delivers is definitely in the detail.

You will find LDPE widely used in plastic packaging or plastic wrap. HDPE is often found in construction and plumbing. And UHMW PE, which is many times stronger than steel, is a high-performance plastic used in bulletproof vests!

The process that makes PE a success was developed in the 1950s by two scientists, Karl Ziegler of Germany and Giulio Natta of Italy. Polyethylene is now one of the most widely produced thermoplastics in the world. It’s light and strong – it’s cheap to transport, easy to handle and safe to store making it a smarter choice than most other materials – especially when it comes to PE pipe.

Drilling down

Polyethylene, like other plastics, starts with the distillation of hydrocarbon fuels into lighter groups called “fractions”.  Some can be combined with other catalysts to produce plastics (typically via polymerization or polycondensation).

Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE) is a very flexible material with unique flow properties that makes it particularly suitable for shopping bags and other plastic film applications. LDPE has high ductility but low tensile strength, which is why it stretches when strained.

Ultrahigh Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW) is an extremely dense version of polyethylene. It is spun into threads with tensile strengths many times greater than steel and used in bulletproof vests and high-performance equipment.

High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) is a robust, moderately stiff plastic with a highly crystalline structure. It is used to make all types of strong and tough containers.  The HDPE used to produce corrosion-free, long-life pipelines for water, waste water and gas is called PE100. PLASSON’s range of poly pipe joiners are designed to easily and securely join PE100 pipelines.

PE is classified as a “thermoplastic” (as opposed to “thermoset”), based on the way the plastic responds to heat.

Thermoplastic vs thermoset

One of the benefits of thermoplastics is they can be heated to their melting point, cooled, and reheated again without degradation.  By contrast, thermoset plastics can only be heated once. The first heating causes thermoset materials to set (a bit like a 2-part epoxy), resulting in a chemical change that cannot be reversed.  These properties are what makes PE ideal for gas pipelines joined by electrofusion fittings like the PLASSON SmartFuse range.

the benefits of PLASSON Australia EF branch saddles

PE is rugged, flexible, and durable.  Both the pipe and PE pipe fittings have outstanding chemical and environmental stress crack resistance.  PE pipelines have been successfully used in a wide variety of applications for over 50 years.  Add to that strength and corrosion-resistance, and you get a life-span far in advance of other pipe materials.

TAKE A LOOK AT THE INNOVATIVE RANGE OF PLASSON PE PIPE FITTINGS HERE…

THE POLY PIPE ABC’S: PN TO SDR

Here’s a quick look at pipe colours and codes for those new to the game or keen to brush up:

Polyethylene pipes, or PE pipes, have been produced in Australia since the mid 1950’s.  The industry started small with diameters like 20mm, 32mm and 63mm for industrial and agricultural applications but PE pipe and fittings are now available in diameters up to 2000mm.

PE pipe has grown rapidly in popularity and polyethylene pipe connected by compression or electrofusion fittings is now largely made from PE100.  This is the third generation of PE and it delivers high performance, long-life PE pipes that will provide reliable service for 100 years or more.

PE100 pipe is used to convey all types of liquids and gases for above and below ground applications including:

  • Urban water and gas supply
  • Mine dewatering
  • Irrigation supply
  • Slurry pipelines
  • Vacuum, pressure and gravity sewer systems
  • Submarine pipelines and ocean outfalls
  • Trenchless pipeline installation and rehabilitation
  • Industrial process pipe work
  • Compressed air services
  • Electrical and telecommunication cable conduits
  • Upstream coal seam gas and water pipelines

Polyethylene pipe has a coloured stripe extruded into the pipe wall as a permanent reminder of what it is inside. These are the main colour codes you are likely to come across when joining PE pipe with compression or electrofusion fittings:

BLUE = potable water

RED = fire mains

LILAC = recycled/grey water

YELLOW = gas

GREEN = rain water/raw water

CREAM = sewer

Polyethylene, or PE, pipe has been successfully used throughout the world for more than 50 years. The main benefits of PE pipes and fittings are corrosion resistance, high strength, toughness and flexibility, so it’s no wonder it is a popular choice worldwide.

Aside from the colour indicating what is being carried by the pipe, there is valuable detail printed on the pipe too.

What is PN?

PN is printed on the pipe. For blue stripe potable water pipe this is usually PN16. The acronym PN stands for Pressure Nominal. When a pipe has a rating of PN16, it is designed to handle 16 Bar internal pressure.

Poly pipe comes in a range of pressure ratings:

PN10 which has a maximum pressure rating of 1000kpa
PN12.5 which is for a maximum of 1250kpa
PN16 for a maximum of 1600kpa

What is OD?

The OD is also printed on the pipe. This is the Outside Diameter, or OD, of the pipe measured in ‘mm’.

Then there is also the acronym SDR, which stands for Standard Dimension Ratio.

When the outside diameter of the pipe is divided by the wall thickness, it gives the SDR of the pipe.

These are important measurements to know and understand when installing pipes that will carry anything under pressure.

SDr calculations for poly pipe PE100

Why choose PE100 pipe?

PE100 is the third generation of pipe grade PE and is a high performance plastic engineered for to deliver.

It has an optimum balance of three key properties: Minimum Required Strength (MRS) – this provides long-term strength and creep resistance. Stress crack resistance (sometimes referred to as slow crack growth resistance). Rapid crack propagation resistance.

Pipe that carries potable water in Australia is made from PE100 which is a type of plastic resin that has been proven to have a minimum required strength (MSR) of 10 MPa at 50 years and 20 degrees celcius.  The operational service life of PE pipelines is dependent upon a number of factors that include: raw material quality, processing conditions, installation, the aggressiveness of the fluid transported, operating pressure and temperature.

‍Click to watch how OD, SDR and PN work together

what abreviations on poly pipe mean