Professional Plumbing Tips

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Why Washers are Important to the Plumbing System

Most people don't think much about the types of washers used for plumbing projects. After all, how can something as small as a washer be that important in the grand scheme of things? The truth is, when a washer is forgotten or the wrong type of washer is used in a project, you quickly learn exactly how important that tiny piece of hardware really is.

assortment of washers used for plumbing project

What Washers Do

When it comes to plumbing projects, washers serve three distinct purposes.

  1. They ensure that the pressure the nut or bolt places on the pipe is even, which reduces the amount of strain placed on the pipe.
  2. The smooth surface provided by the washer ensures that the nut or bolt is properly tightened.
  3. Washers used during the installation or repair of faucets are important for creating a water seal.

The Different Types of Washers

There are three different types of washers commonly used in plumbing projects.

1. Flanged Washers

Flanged washers, which are also referred to as shoulder washers, are the most common type of washer. They're used to help balance the tension a bolt places on the pipe.

2. Tapered Washers

Tapered washers, which are also called beveled washers, are easy to spot. They are designed so that the washer starts out thin and gradually gets thicker. The only time this type of washer is used during plumbing projects is when a pipe or fitting has surface imperfections.

3. Plumbing Washers

Plumbing washers are constructed out of a material that allows the washer to provide a watertight seal to a faucet, while simultaneously ensuring that a steady pressure is kept on the fittings.

Where to Find the Washers Needed for Plumbing Projects

You can find the different types of washers needed to complete plumbing projects wherever plumbing supplies are sold or at your local hardware stores. If you don't feel up to tackling your plumbing repair or installation project yourself, contact Brian Wear Plumbing today!

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