PlumbingMart is your top choice for plumbing related information and education

Click on any letter of the term you would like to find

Fibrous material that is used on faucets to prevent leaks.

Packing Nut:
Nut that holds the stem of a faucet in position & holds the packing material.

Parallel System:
Two or more identical size heaters piped with water connections, that is, cold water travels equal distance into the inlets to the heaters from a "T" connection and hot water travels equal distance from the outlet of the heaters to a "T" connection.

Polybutylene. A flexible plastic tubing used in water supply systems where allowed by code. Also, polished brass finish on faucets.

Plumbing and Drainage Institute.

Polyethylene plastic material. Also plain end pipe.

Peak Hour Demand:
Time when the largest demand for hot water is needed.

Peak Load Period:
The period of the day in which the system has the greatest demand.

Pedestal Lavatory:
A lavatory in which the basin is supported primarily by a pedestal leg.

Penal Valve:
A commercial flush valve, so-named because of its use in penal institutions.

Perfect Vacuum:
Theoretically, space without matter in it. A perfect vacuum has never been obtained.

Perforated Pipe:
Pipe designed to discharge water through small, multiple, closely spaced orifices or nozzles, places in a segment of its circumference for irrigation purposes.

A small faucet for draining liquids or relieving air pressure.

Cross-linked polyethylene. PEX tubing is commonly used for hydronic radiant floor heat, but increasingly also used for water supply lines.

Potential Hydrogen. The hydrogen ion concentration of water to denote acidity or alkalinity, measured on a scale of 0 to 14. Below 7 denotes acidity; above 7 denotes alkalinity.

For ease of production and distribution, A.C. is distributed in what is known as a 3 phase supply using three active wires and one neutral wire.

Plumbing Heating Cooling Contractors Association.

A poisonous and carcinogenic chemical often found in municipal water supplies. Also known as carbolic acid, phenal is a benzene derivative.

Pipe immersed into acid bath for removal of scale, oil, dirt, etc.

Piezo Switch:
The electronic switch the bather uses to control the whirlpool and optional heater. This switch, based upon the piezo-electric effect, generates a voltage when pressure is applied to it.

A small burner used to ignite the main burner.

External (male) threaded end.

Pipe Dope:
Slang for pipe-joint compound. Substance applied to threaded fittings to create a watertight seal.

Downward slope of a drain pipe in the direction of the water flow.

Pivot Door:
A shower door that rotates on two metal pivots at the top and bottom of the door.

Male threaded fitting which seals the end run of a pipe when fitted into a female threaded fitting.

Precisely vertical. Also to test for, or to make vertical. Also to perform plumbing work.

Plumbers Helper:
A plunger.

Plumbers Putty:
Pliable, popular putty used to seal joints between drain pieces and fixture surfaces.

Plumbers Tree:
Prefabricated set of drain waste, vent, and supply lines.

A rubber suction cup approx 6" in diameter attached to a wooden dowel handle used to free drain clogs.

Pertains to devices using compressed air.

Point of Use:
A small water heater used for remote locations.

P.O. Plug:
Lavatory drain with separate removable plug.

valve that rises perpendicularly to or from its seat.

Pop-Up Assembly:
The drain mechanism of a faucet installed on a lavatory. The drain stopper "pops" up and down.

Pop-Up Drain:
Remote control drain assembly. Also known as a "trip lever drain" for tubs.

White ceramic ware that consists of quartz, kaolin, and feldspar. It is fired at high temperature on steel or cast iron to make the surface of some bathtubs, kitchen sinks, and bathroom lavatories.

Porcelain Enamel:
Vitreous enamel. Often refers to pressed steel products with a porcelain glaze.

A measure of the volume of internal pores, or voids, in ion exchangers and filter media; sometimes expressed as a ratio to the total volume of the medium.

An opening in a burner head through which gas or an air-gas mixture is discharged for ignition.

Porcelain on steel. A finish commonly used on sinks and tubs.

Positive Displacement Pump:
Called a PD pump. Gear, sliding vane, progressive cavity, lobe, etc. The capacity determined by the pump speed. The maximum head is determined by the horsepower available and the casing strength.

Water which is safe to drink.

An adjustable resistor used to vary the sensing distance of the touchless faucet.

Powder Coat:
A technique for applying paint to metal surfaces. The metal is covered with a powder of dry pain particles and is baked in an oven. This causes the power to melt and harden into a tough, colorful finish.

Power Venting:
Mechanical draft exhaust to outside, usually utilizing room air to support combustion.

Polypropylene Pipe.

Parts per million. A unit of measure for impurities in water.

Pressure regulator. Usually rewired if water pressure ever exceeds 80 PSI on potable water supplies inside a structure.

Pre-Charged Tank:
A water storage tank pre-charged with air at factory featuring a vinyl bag to separate water from air which prevents water logging. This tank design provides greater drawdown than standard tanks. Pre-charged tanks do not require air volume control.

Preheated Water:
Water that has been tempered (heated) for inlet supply.

Pressure Assisted Toilet:
Utilizes the power of the flushometer valve to create a powerful siphonic flushing action. Water fills a sealed tank inside a chinaware tank creating pressure by displacing air within this sealed tank. When the push button or trip lever is activated, the water under pressure, rapidly thrusts or pushes waste and water through the bowl. The entire flushing process occurs very quick (about 4 seconds).

Pressure Balancing Valve:
A shower mixing valve that automatically maintains balance between incoming hot and cold water supplied by immediately regulating fluctuations in pressure. As a result the outlet temperature remains constant, though the outlet pressure may drop. Also known as an "anti-scald valve".

Pressure Head:
Pressure in a plumbing system. The unit of measure which is the vertical force exerted by water at a depth of one foot.

Pressure Loss:
The term given for the loss of pressure that occurs whenever water moves through a pipe or when water moves uphill against the force of gravity. If the total pressure loss in a piping system exceeds the available static water pressure the water will not flow.

Pressure Reducing Valve:
A valve that automatically reduces inlet water pressure to a specified value at its outlet under static cold water conditions.

Pressure Regulator:
A device for controlling and maintaining a uniform outlet gas pressure.

Pressure Tank:
Device used to pump water from a well.

Pressure Tubing:
Tubing used to conduct fluids under pressure or at elevated temperatures or both, and produced to stricter tolerances that pipe.

Primary Air:
Air which is mixed with gas before the gas leaves a burner port to burn. Ideal burning condition generally is 10 cubic feet of air per one cubic foot of gas.

Primary Air Inlet:
The openings) through which primary air is admitted into a burner.

Priming Jet:
Opening in bowl through which tank-supplied water flows, designed to propel waste up into the trapway.

Pounds per Square Inch.

Pounds per Square Inch Gauge.

"P" Trap:
Trap design which routes drainage horizontally back through the wall to connect with drainage waste vent (DWV).

P & T Relief Valve:
Pressure and Temperature relief valve.

A plasticizer.

Public Sewer:
A common sewer directly controlled by public authority.

Pull-Out Spray:
Single control kitchen faucet which offers a retractable hose and sprayhead to be used for food preparation and cleaning.

Pumping Level:
The lowest water level reached during pumping operation.

Purged Line:
A plumbing line in which the faucet has been opened and allowed to run for a specified length of time, usually 1-5 minutes.

PolyVinyl Chloride - A white plastic used in the manufacture of water supply pipe.

Pysical Vapor Deposition, a modern plating process used mostly with polished brass or gold finishes on faucets. Vaporized zirconium reacts with nitrogen and other gases to form a very durable surface, which will not tarnish or discolor.

Not finding what you are looking for? Send us a suggestion and let us know what term you are looking for.

Copyright © 2021