How Much Weight Will PVC Pipe Support? (Find Out Now!)

PVC pipe is a flexible product with extra makes use of than simply transferring liquids from level A to B. Many individuals use PVC pipe to construct shelving, furnishings and even backyard buildings like greenhouse frames. Usually these individuals surprise how a lot weight a PVC pipe can assist.

The load-bearing capability of PVC pipes known as the tensile energy. The tensile energy of PVC pipe is instantly proportional to its diameter. Sometimes, the bigger the diameter of the tube, the better the tensile energy of the tube. The size of the part of PVC pipe is a consider its carrying capability.

Earlier than you begin constructing any mission with PVC pipe, it is a good suggestion to find out the tensile energy of the pipe you are going to use. PVC pipes can be found in numerous designs and weights. Schedule 40 PVC pipe is the commonest, however Schedule 80 follows intently. There are different sorts, comparable to DWV and foam core PVC pipes. Understanding the capabilities of those PVC merchandise can prevent from some hassle whereas creating your PVC pipe mission.

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Discover the best size-to-weight ratio on your mission

Discovering the right size-to-weight ratio on your PVC mission is crucial for a lot of causes. It’s best to contemplate these components.

  • Contemplate the utmost weight you anticipate on your mission and price the PVC with a ten % security margin for load-bearing capability.
  • Attempt to maintain the diameter of the PVC pipe as small as doable to accommodate your loading wants. This generally is a price range issue.
  • Select the best kind of PVC pipe on your mission. Value is one other consideration right here.
  • The scale of your mission (peak, depth and width) can have a serious affect on its carrying capability. Lengthy PVC pipes are likely to sag and bend.

A correctly deliberate PVC pipe mission can present years of service. Keep in mind that under-scaled tasks get overloaded and fail, generally with disastrous outcomes. This chart may also help you identify the perfect pipe diameter on your mission.

Span and deflection of PVC pipes

wingspan in ft ½” PVC pipe ¾ inch PVC pipe 1 inch PVC pipe 1.25 inch PVC pipe 1.5 inch PVC pipe 2 inch PVC pipe
1′ 18 kilos. 28 kilos. 40 kilos. 50 kilos. 58 kilos. 70 kilos.
2′ 5 kilos. 10 kilos. 24 kilos. 35 kilos. 45 kilos. 55 kilos.
3′ 3 kilos. 6 kilos. 11 kilos. 20 kilos. 30 kilos. 35 kilos.
4′ 2 kilos. 3 kilos. 6 kilos. 11 kilos. 23 kilos. 28 kilos.

Spans better than 4 ft will not be really useful. PVC pipe deflection turns into a problem with longer spans that may trigger structural issues in your mission.

Choices for PVC pipes

It’s best to perceive the assorted choices obtainable at your native PVC pipe ironmongery store. These various kinds of PVC pipe usually have totally different tensile strengths. Selecting the flawed pipe on your mission can have disastrous penalties.

PVC-U – a budget and customary choice

For many extraordinary non-plumbing tasks, PVC-U is an effective alternative. The sort of PVC pipe is normally the most affordable and available. PVC-U doesn’t comprise any plasticizers or different components. PVC-U can also be pretty UV resistant and sturdy.

C-PVC – For larger temperatures

When PVC pipe has to resist a wider vary of temperatures, the pipe is chlorinated throughout the manufacturing course of. This makes the pipe extra appropriate to be used in water methods that comprise a water heater and must ship scorching water to taps and different sources. C-PVC is essentially the most generally used PVC pipe in home plumbing.


When PVC-U undergoes a particular kind of processing, the plastic molecules are aligned to present it extra energy. This makes PVC-O a a lot stronger and extra strain resistant plastic pipe. Buried strain pipes for water mains are important functions for PVC-O.


PVC pipes will be modified with sure components that improve the plastic pipe’s resistance to affect and different exterior harm. Many PVC pipe functions specify PVC-HI as a suitable PVC product. PVC HI pipe should meet a a lot larger manufacturing and testing customary to earn the Excessive Impression ranking. Pipelines that transport pure fuel underneath strain are sometimes constructed with PVC-HI.

What’s the finest PVC pipe for my DIY mission?

Normally, PVC-U or C-PVC are essentially the most generally used kinds of PVC pipe for house tasks that don’t contain transferring water. For instance, many individuals construct cabinets, furnishings or backyard tasks from PVC-U and C-PVC.

Sometimes, price is a vital issue for these kind of tasks. PVC-U tends to be barely cheaper than C-PVC and works simply as effectively. This may increasingly or might not be a giant drawback relying on the dimensions and complexity of your mission.

One other side is availability. Most house enchancment shops inventory PVC-U and C-PVC pipe and fittings. Nonetheless, C-PVC can have a more durable time discovering specialty fittings comparable to 4-way tees and different fittings.

Do I want particular glue to construct my mission?

Some kinds of plastic tubing require particular solvent adhesives to make the connections safe. Utilizing PVC pipe normally requires customary PVC solvent. Nonetheless, there are some tips to creating strong connections that will not leak.

  • Be sure that the PVC is clear. Wipe mud or different particles from the top of the tube and contained in the becoming. If vital, use a humid material to wash the 2 surfaces.
  • Clear any burrs or plastic shavings from the pipe and becoming. A small rasp or file is a useful device for this. Smaller diameter PVC pipes will be ready with emery material or advantageous sandpaper
  • Apply primer to the surface of the pipe and the within of the becoming. The primer begins the solvent welding course of by softening the PVC floor. When you’re anxious about holding your pipe’s new white colour, you should purchase a transparent PVC primer.
  • Enable the primer to dry to the contact earlier than making use of the solvent cement to the pipe and becoming. Use the applicator within the cement can and apply an excellent coat of solvent cement to the pipe and becoming. Attempt to keep away from dripping and working.
  • Match your pipe and becoming immediately. Slide the becoming onto the tube and push till the tube hits the cease within the becoming. Flip the becoming 1 / 4 flip to make sure the solvent cement is evenly distributed. Maintain the becoming and pipe collectively for a couple of minutes to permit the solvent weld to treatment.

“Correctly made solvent cement joints are sometimes stronger than the pipe and becoming. For instance, an adhesive joint ought to last more than the pipe and becoming in regular use.

Do you want a restore or substitute of taps, fittings or pipes?

Obtain free, no-obligation quotes from skilled contractors close to you.


PVC pipe tasks – enjoyable and economical

PVC pipe will be tailored to a wide range of different tasks than simply transporting water from right here to there. Your creativeness is the restrict of what you’ll be able to obtain with a chunk of PVC pipe and some fittings. Keep in mind that the size and diameter of the pipe symbolize the burden limits your mission can assist.

Dennis Howard

Dennis is a retired firefighter with an in depth background in development, house enchancment and reworking. He labored part-time within the trades whereas serving as an lively responsibility firefighter. After retirement, he began a transforming and residential restore enterprise which he ran for a number of years.