Service pipes are used to connect buildings to mains pipes. This includes gas, water and barrier pipes. Our service pipes meet current building regulations and can be used across both domestic and corporate building projects. We recommend service pipes are buried at least 600mm underground to prevent them from frost damage or freezing.
Service pipes are used to deliver gas and water supplies to domestic, commercial, agricultural and industrial users. Our comprehensive range covers gas pipes, water pipes, barrier pipes and water pipe fittings.
What is barrier pipe?
While all pipes naturally create a barrier between the contents of the pipe and its surroundings, sometimes an additional layer of protection is required and this is precisely what barrier pipe provides.
This additional layer creates a more effective barrier than plastic alone can provide, protecting water systems and preventing contamination of their contents.
Barrier pipe is used to transport water supply across land previously used for purposes that may have contaminated the soil with substances that are hazardous to health, including:
- Refineries and chemical processing plants
- Fuel stations, forecourts and vehicle storage or repair facilities
- Manufacturing and processing
- Landfill, scrap yards and hazardous waste treatment sites
- Agriculture and horticulture
Barrier pipe is also used inside buildings for water supply, central heating and underfloor heating, where it prevents oxygen and other gases from entering the pipe and causing corrosion and contamination. This extends the life of the system and protects against leakages.
What do the different pressure pipe ratings mean?
PE80 pressure pipe
Widely used for gas, water and industrial liquids, PE80 is generally made from MDPE (often blue or yellow) although some PE80 pipe may be HDPE. PE80 pipe will typically have a diameter of between 20mm and 63mm.
If it is rated SDR11 PN12, PE80 pipe will need a minimum required strength (MRS) of 8.0MPa (Megapascal).
All MDPE pressure pipe and some HDPE pressure pipe is made to PE80 standards.
PE100 pressure pipe
This specification is more suited to larger diameter pipes (90-170mm). Generally manufactured from HDPE or HPPE, its increased strength means that PE100 pipe can work at the same operating pressure with a thinner pipe wall, so less polymer is used in its manufacture.
A common PE100 rating is SDR11 PN16, which means it must have a minimum required strength (MRS) of 10.0MPa (Megapascal).
HPPE pressure pipe is only made to PE100 standards.
SC80 and SC100 pressure pipe
With SC standing for shell core, these pipes are co-extruded from polyethylenes of different colours to facilitate identification, or different specifications to reduce cost or improve performance such as flexibility or durability.
Having a different colour for the outer layer and inner core also means that if the outer layer is damaged the inner core will be visible and easily identifiable for repair or replacement.
The standards and ratings of SC pipes are equivalent to those of PE pipes.
What temperatures can pressure pipes withstand?
One downside of polyethylene pressure pipe versus ductile iron or steel is that it isn’t recommended for continuous pressure operation at high temperatures. PE80 and PE100 pipes shouldn’t be used continuously for liquids above 60°C or gaseous fluids above 30°C.
At the other end of the scale, PE100 is more suitable for low temperature use than PE80, offering excellent crack resistance to -30°C.
Why is MDPE pipe made in different colours?
MDPE (medium-density polyethylene) is widely used in construction and civil engineering as it is cheaper than copper and a safe alternative to lead. It is also tough, corrosion-proof and because of its flexibility, easier to install.
As MDPE pipe has many uses, it is colour-coded to make its contents immediately identifiable during installation and later excavation. This colour coding is also extended to any twinwall ducting used to further protect the pipe.
Blue MDPE for potable water
One of the chief benefits of using MDPE pipe for drinking water is that it won’t corrode and isn’t chemically reactive. This means it is highly resistant to many chemicals that naturally occur in the soil and under normal conditions won’t contribute to microbiological growth of harmful algae, bacteria and fungi. Blue MDPE is therefore used for underground potable (drinking) water supplies.
Blue MDPE is generally installed within twinwall ducting of the same colour for added protection.
Blue/Brown MDPE barrier pipe for potable water
MDPE barrier pipe can be easily distinguished by the brown stripes that run along its length. Between the blue MDPE outer skin and the black MDPE lining, an aluminium layer acts as a barrier to soil contaminants reaching the water.
Black MDPE for non-potable water
Not all water supply needs to be of drinkable quality; for example, in industrial processes, agriculture and landscaping water features. Black MDPE is sufficient for most non-potable water supplies.
Black/Orange MDPE for industrial or sewage pump water
If a black MDPE pipe has two orange stripes running along its length, this denotes it is being used for an industrial or sewage water pump.
Yellow MDPE for gas supply
The high visibility of yellow MDPE makes it easily identifiable during excavation and for this reason it is used exclusively for connecting new property developments to the mains gas supply.
Enter your postcode for delivery timescales, accurate stock levels, and your nearest depot