Comparing Steel and Copper Plumbing Fittings

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Comparing Steel and Copper Plumbing Fittings

There are many industries that utilize the sort of high quality steel found at Wasatch Steel, and one of the most common is the plumbing industry. Many areas of plumbing may use steel, particularly plumbing pipe fittings, which will often employ steel tubing.

In fact, steel tubing and copper are likely the two most common materials used for plumbing pipe fittings, along with plastic in some situations. Is steel superior to copper, or vice versa? Let’s take a look at pros and cons of steel in comparison to copper.

Steel Pipe Pros

Steel is one of the most durable metals for many different applications, including plumbing. Here are a few of the pros of steel pipe fittings:

  • Durability: Once these are installed, steel plumbing fittings will last a lifetime
  • Cost effectiveness: For this reason, these are extremely cost effective products
  • Resistance: Steel pipe fittings will withstand rust and corrosion, two potentially large concerns within the plumbing realm. They’re not affected by extreme temperatures on either end of the spectrum, and no damage is caused if water freezes inside them. This makes them a great choice for people who live in marine environments that typically cause additional wear and tear
  • Price: Copper fittings are more costly than steel

Steel Pipe Cons

There are a few minor drawbacks to steel pipe fittings:

  • Lack of malleability: Steel is less malleable than cooper, and can make installation more difficult. However, for most, the durability added by steel pipe fittings far outweighs this downside – and most quality installers can still get you the exact same fitting situation
  • Galvanization: Steel must be galvanized to be used in plumbing applications, to help with corrosion protection. This can introduce small quantities of lead into water, which may have harmful health effects. However, for the conscientious homeowner, there are simple tactics available to combat this lead effect

Interested in learning more about the pros and cons of steel in a given application, or about any of our steel services? Speak to the pros at Wasatch Steel today.