About Copper Tube
Copper Tube : copper tubing is most often used for supply of hot and cold tap water, and as refrigerant line in HVAC systems as it offers a high level of corrosion resistance.There are two types of copper tubings :
- Soft Copper
- Rigid Copper
Soft Copper: It is the most popular choice for refrigerant lines in split-system air conditioners and heat pumps. While the work hardening of the drawing process used to size the tubing makes the copper hard/rigid, it is carefully annealed to make it soft again; it is therefore more expensive to produce than non-annealed, rigid copper tubing.
It can be joined by any of the three methods used for rigid copper, and it is the only type of copper tubing suitable for flare connections.
Also, Soft (or ductile) copper tubing can be bent easily to travel around obstacles in the path of the tubing.
Rigid Copper : It is reffered to as rigid due to the work hardening of the drawing process. It cannot be bent and must use elbow fittings to go around corners or around obstacles.
If heated and allowed to slowly cool in a process called annealing, rigid copper will become soft and can be bent/formed without cracking.
Rigid copper is a popular choice for water lines.
- Air Conditioning and Refrigeration systems
- Electrical Applications
- General Engineering
- Heating applications and Solar Panels
- Heat Exchangers and Locomotives
- Marine Applications
- Automobile Industries
- Earthing system
- Copper fittings
Types of Connections :
Soldered connection : Solder fittings are smooth, and easily slip onto the end of a tubing section. The joint is then heated using a torch, and solder is melted into the connection. When the solder cools, it forms a very strong bond which can last for decades.
Solder-connected rigid copper is the most popular choice for water supply lines in modern buildings.
Compression connections : Compression fittings use a soft metal or thermoplastic ring (the compression ring, "olive" or "ferrule") which is squeezed onto the pipe and into the fitting by a compression nut. The soft metal conforms to the surface of the tubing and the fitting, and creates a seal.
Compression connections do not typically have the long life that soldered connections offer, but are advantageous in many cases because they are easy to make using basic tools.
Flare connections : Flare connections require that the end of a tubing section be spread outward in a bell shape using a flare tool. A flare nut then compresses this bell-shaped end onto a male fitting.
Flare connections are a labor-intensive method of making connections, but are quite reliable over the course of many years.
Crimped or pressed connections : Crimped or pressed connections use special copper fittings which are permanently attached to a rigid copper tubing with a powered crimper. The special fittings, manufactured with sealant already inside, slide over the tubing to be connected.
Thousands of pounds-force per square inch of pressure are used to deform the fitting and compress the sealant against the inner copper tubing, creating a water- tight seal.
The advantages of this method are that it should last as long as the tubing, it takes less time to complete than other methods, it is cleaner in both appearance and the materials used to make the connection, and no open flame is used during the connection process.
Common wall-thicknesses of copper tubing in the USA :
Type K : It has the thickest wall section of the three types of pressure rated tubing and is commonly used for deep underground burial such as under sidewalks and streets, with a suitable corrosion protection coating or continuous polyethylene sleeve as required by code. In the United States it usually has green colored printing.
Type L : It has a thinner pipe wall section, and is used in residential and commercial water supply and pressure applications. In the United States it usually has blue colored printing.
Type M : It has an even thinner pipe wall section, and is used in residential and commercial water supply and pressure applications. In the United States it usually has red colored printing.
Type DWV : It has the thinnest wall section, and is generally only suitable for unpressurized applications, such as drains, waste and vent (DWV) lines. In the United States it usually has yellow or light orange colored printing, common sizes being 1-¼" , 1-½", and 2" copper tube size.
Common wall-thicknesses in Europe :
Type X : It is the most common, and is used in above groundservices including drinking water supply, hot and cold water systems, sanitation, central heating and other general purpose applications.
Type Y : Is a thicker walled pipe, used for underground works and heavy duty requirements including hot and cold water supply, gas reticulation, sanitary plumbing, heating and general engineering.
Type Z : Is a thinner walled pipe, also used for above groundservices including drinking water supply, hot and cold water systems, sanitation, central heating and other general purpose applications.
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