The requirement to reduce operational costs and installation times on jobs has led to an increasing trend for the use of pressfit pipe jointing technology, a system that can be used on a wide variety of applications and can reduce installation times on site by as much as half, not to mention minimising costs without compromising on the overall quality and integrity of the system.
Over the past five years or so pressfit piping has become much more commonplace and is now looking to take a meaty share of the pipes and fittings market, which had a market value forecast of £744 million by 2013 (AMA 2003), despite the economic downturn.
Available in a range of materials, including stainless steel, carbon steel, copper, CuNiFe and multilayer metal/plastic, pressfit piping is suitable for use in a wide variety of applications including heating, cooling, gas and industrial facilities.
One of the reasons for the rise in popularity of pressfit piping is that it reduces labour times on site. Pressfit fittings are compressed on to the tube by using just a pressfit tool, unlike traditional methods which require hot works, solvents and adhesives.
While installation time can be significantly reduced, pressfit fittings can be used on a wide range of applications and offer a practical, durable and convenient alternative to welded, soldered and threaded connections.
Pressfit piping requires no hot soldering, so can even be installed by an unskilled labourer and with no requirement for a hot works certificate. The absence of a working flame also means this piping system minimises the risk of damage to existing fittings and fixtures, making it a particularly popular choice for refurbishment projects and when installing gas supply lines.
Pressfit technology from leading manufacturers also provides a visibly safe way of sealing pipework, offering added reassurance to the installer and end user. Most pressfit fittings are designed so that any connections not pressed during installation are automatically detectable during testing, providing the installer with a fail-safe method of checking for unpressed joints.
Available for use on pipes with diameters of up to 108 mm, pressfit fittings can be specified for a wide range of projects, from building services installation where quick and clean installation is necessary, to industrial applications where connections are required to withstand higher temperatures, pressures or chemicals.
Pressfit piping helps to slash installation times, reduces the risk of health and safety issues from hot works on site and offers a flexible and reliable jointing system.
Simon Spridgeon is marketing manager, piping systems, Geberit UK