How Does Home Plumbing Work?

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How Does Home Plumbing Work?


Every plumbing system found in homes should be made up of 2 different subsystems. Freshwater is brought in by the home supply subsystem, while wastewater is removed by the drainage sub-system. The supply and drainage subsystems are two separate systems that do not overlap. However, there are links between the two, and these links are what make the plumbing system worthwhile. 

A fixture is a connection between the supply and drainage systems in plumbing terms. Toilets, tubs, and sinks are examples. Fixtures can be described as the devices that draw freshwater and release sewerage. They are primarily intended to keep the supply and drainage systems separate.

Home Supply Sub-System

How Does Home Plumbing Work?


The water supply system in your home transports municipal water from the street to your home, where it is distributed to showers, faucets, toilets, bathtubs, and appliances like the water heater and dishwasher. The water that enters your home is constantly under pressure that allows It get into your home with sufficient pressure to let it move upstairs, around corners, and anywhere else it is required. 

When water enters your home, it flows through a meter that tracks how much you use. Typically, the main water shut-off valve is next to the meter. It’s critical to promptly close the main shutoff valve in the event of a plumbing disaster. You may not want to switch off your entire water supply in the event of an emergency, such as a leak in a sink, toilet, or shower. As a result, most plumbing fittings have stop valves. 

Your cold water needs are always met with water from the main supply. Another step is required to obtain a hot water supply. Water will flow from the cold water system to your water heater through a single line. A hot water line will go from the heater to all of the fixtures, appliances, and outlets that need hot water. 

The thermostat on the heater maintains the temperature you specify by turning on and off the heating elements as needed.

A residential water heater’s standard temperature setting is between 140 and 160 degrees Fahrenheit.

Home Drainage Sub-System

How Does Home Plumbing Work?


The plumbing systems in your home are basically whether one has a septic or sewer system. Pressure is not a major factor in drainage systems as it is in home supply systems. Because the drainage pipes are all oriented downhill towards the sewer, waste exits your home. The waste is drawn downward by gravity, and the sewer line carries it to a sewage treatment plant or a septic tank. While the drainage system appears straightforward, it involves traps, vents, and cleanouts. 

The vents on your roof allow air to enter the drainpipes. Wastewater would not flow out adequately if there was no air supply flowing from the vents, and the water in the traps would have to be drained away. Traps are critical components of the drainage system. They’re located under every sink. The trap is the curved or S-shaped portion of a pipe that runs beneath a drain. 

Water flows with enough force from the basin to pass through the trap and out the drainpipe. After that, enough water remains in the trap to form a seal, preventing sewer gas from backing up into your home. A trap has to be fixed by plumbing system suppliers in every fixture. 

It’s important to note that toilets are self-trapped and do not require a separate trap at the drain. Drum traps are common in older bathtubs, which not only seal against sewer gas but also collect dirt to prevent cases of clogged drains.

It’s vital to note that drum traps no longer meet current code requirements. Modern homes have Grease traps installed in their kitchen sinks to collect grease that might otherwise cause obstruction. Drain blockages are commonly caused by grease and hair. Traps often contain clean-out plugs that make it easy to remove or break up any blockage. 

Most people refer to the drainage system as the DWV meaning drain-waste-vent system, this is because it includes all of these components.  It is crucial that all components of the DWV are present and in good operating condition. This will allow water to flow freely in the house and waste to depart properly.


Generally, plumbing is a complicated system that is one of the most expensive to fix or install in a home. Understanding its foundation will help you identify the types of issues that can arise. Understanding this system will also help you create a system that will perform properly and pass plumbing requirements. This information can be very beneficial especially if you’re planning a remodel or building a new home. To learn more from our specialists and to acquire high-quality PEX pipe, please contact us.


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