Quick Question - PCV or ABS to existing copper pipe?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by EricaC, Jun 13, 2006.

  1. EricaC

    EricaC New Member

    Messages:
    6
    I think this is a simple question, but I am installing a new shower as part of a bathroom remodel. The drain pipe that is currently in place is 2" copper. The shower that I'm wanting to purchase has a choice of drain material - ABS or PVC. Will one be easier / better / cheaper to make the transition to copper?

    Thanks!
    -Erica
  2. tbplumbloco

    tbplumbloco New Member

    Messages:
    60
    Location:
    Ohio
    copper to pvc

    [​IMG]

    pvc would be the choice of most pro's,the transition coupling should be a mission band coupling or no-hub coupling that is designed for 2"copper by 2" pvc/cast iron.Copper pipe has a slightly smaller ID than pvc and therefore the transition coupling is thicker for the copper side of the coupling.Cheaper is not always better.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 14, 2006
  3. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,979
    Location:
    Ohio
    Yes PVC.

    While the copper does have a smaller ID it is coppers smaller OD that is the problem and requires a specificly sized banded coupling that is made to go from copper to PVC. They can be had at any good plumbing supply house.

    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 24, 2009
  4. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

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    3,317
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Since the copper has smaller ID, does PVC to copper violate the "never larger to smaller" practice, or does that apply only for changes in nominal size?
  5. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,979
    Location:
    Ohio
    No that wouldn't apply as 2" copper is 1.98" ID and 2.125" OD. . The only time the larger to smaller applys is when changing nominal sizes, like you said, like 4"-3" or 2"-1.5". 2" PVC DWV is 2.375 OD .
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2006
  6. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

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    7,401
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    I don't think PVC is any better that ABS, some areas don't have ABS, some use a lot of it. Either one will work just fine as long as the transition is done correctly.
  7. they are both among the strongest plastics invented yet. They are both in the same family in terms of their composition too. Very similar. I have never seen a discussion that pointed out any big differences.
  8. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,979
    Location:
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    I think PVC is used more and is readly avaliable in more places.
  9. Lakee911

    Lakee911 I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP)

    Messages:
    1,328
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    ABS is black and PVC is white! :)

    I don't think ABS is UV resistent, but I could be wrong. I remeber Dad replacing the sunlight-exposed ABS plastic with PVC on our swimming pool when I was a kid. It had turned kind of gray and brittle.
  10. tbplumbloco

    tbplumbloco New Member

    Messages:
    60
    Location:
    Ohio
    pvc to copper

    sorry a may have added to some confusion by saying ID on the copper pipe,really meant OD as another poster clarified about the need for the correct transition coupling for copper to pvc.You are not changing that much pipe for a shower drain,whats more important is the shower drain strainer assembly,glued or no caulk drain,p-trap+transition coupling.
  11. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,401
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    You're not changing "much". But, you are changing slightly and you are changing materials. You can't solvent glue PVC or ABS to copper, you must use a fitting designed for the purpose. Banded couplings will do this properly and quite easily.
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