Types of Pipe Fittings | Purposes of Pipe Fittings Commonly Used

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In this article, we will discuss types of pipe fittings.


  1. Introduction  

The different types of pipe fittings are found in the market for different uses and functions. A pipe fitting is utilized in the plumbing system to attach various pipes of similar size or various sizes, to control the flow, or to measure the flow. They are made up of various materials like copper, iron, brass, PVC, etc.


Read Also: Difference Between Open Channel Flow and Pipe Flow



  2. Types and Purposes of Pipe Fittings  

The types of pipe fittings and purposes are as follows:


  2.1. Elbows  

Elbows are commonly utilized types of fittings to change the angle or direction of the pipe. These are most commonly available in 90 degrees and 45 degree turns. The sweep of the fitting tells how fast a transition or change in direction is made.


  2.2. Street Elbows  

In this type of pipe fitting, one edge has male threads and the other edge has female threads. These are the same in galvanized steel and copper pipe. They are suitable because they do away with the requirement for a nipple and perform well in tight quarters.


  2.3. Tee Fittings  

It is shaped like the alphabet T.  It permits branch lines.


  2.4. Reducers  

It is used to attach pipes of various diameters. It makes a small change in diameter.



  2.5. Bushings  

Bushings are types of pipe fittings used to make the diameter of a pipe fitting smaller. They are a little different from reducers because they make a sudden change in diameter and need little space.


  2.6. Adaptor Fittings  

It is used to vary the edge of a non-threaded pipe to male or female threads as required. The most commonly utilized in copper and plastic plumbing jobs.


  2.7. Caps  

It is used to close the edge of a dead-end pipe.


  2.8. Plugs  

It is used to close an edging on a pipe fitting generally utilized for inspection or cleanout.


  2.9. Nipples  

The short lengths of pipe are threaded at both edges.


  2.10. Wyes  

It is used firstly to gain inner access to DWV (drain-waste-vent) systems.


  2.11. Valves  

The devices that limit the flow of liquid or gas through or from a pipe. (Compression valves, ball valves, sleeve-cartridge valves, ceramic disc valves, etc).


  2.12. PVC Fittings  

It is available in a wide variety of configurations and maybe stick (S) or threaded (T).


  2.13. Copper Tubing  

It uses in compression fittings. Common fittings are couplings, ells, and tees.



  2.14. Olet  

Olets are utilized when there are standard sizes of fittings that are not best for our needs. Sometimes the inlet pipe size is larger compared to outlet pipes in t-sections then also Olets are used. There are many types of olets are available in the market.

Some major types of olets are:


Socket weld Olet

Threaded olet

Elbow olet

Nipple olet

Lateral olet


Flange olet


  2.15. Coupling  

A coupling is used to connect the pipes of the same diameter. Couplings are also useful if the pipe is broken or leakage occurs.

Generally, there are two types of couplings are available in the market. Compression coupling and slip coupling are 2 types of coupling. Compression coupling is a normal coupling that is connected between two pipes and it saves leakage by the management of gaskets or rubber seals on both sides, otherwise, glue is needed.

Slip coupling is easier to install and it contains two pipes which are arranged as one into other, inner pipe can slide up to some length. So, we can fix long length damaged pipe by slip coupling.


  2.16. Unions  

It is a type of fitting, which works similarly to coupling. But coupling cannot be replaced after fixing but in this case, we can replace the union whenever we needed. Unions consist of nut, male and female-ended threads. So, this is also useful for keeping the use of the pipe.


Read Also: Types of Pipes



  2.17. Cross-type  

Cross-type fittings have 4 openings in 4 directions. These are used when there are 4 pipes are coming at a point. These fittings cause more quantity of stress on the pipe as the temperature varies because they are located at the center of four connection points. Cross fittings are majorly utilized for fire sprinkler systems.


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