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Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

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  • Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

    I had a discussion earlier today about the copper pipe types & would like to hear what the differences are between the K, L & M copper pipes & what they are used for. I believe those are the only 3 types.

  • #2
    Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

    There are other types. K, L, and M are types of "hard" copper tube, meaning the rigid lengths we usually call "copper pipe". The types refer to wall thickness. M is the thinnest, K the thickest. All have the same OD ( the actual OD of hard copper is always exactly 1/8" larger than the nominal size.) So, 1/2" copper of K,L, or M is always exatly 5/8" OD. The id varies slightyly due to the wall thickness.

    Other types of copper tubing are ACR ( air conditioning) and DWV ( drains )

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

      Originally posted by lovetheUSA View Post
      There are other types. K, L, and M are types of "hard" copper tube, meaning the rigid lengths we usually call "copper pipe". The types refer to wall thickness. M is the thinnest, K the thickest. All have the same OD ( the actual OD of hard copper is always exactly 1/8" larger than the nominal size.) So, 1/2" copper of K,L, or M is always exatly 5/8" OD. The id varies slightyly due to the wall thickness.

      Other types of copper tubing are ACR ( air conditioning) and DWV ( drains )
      Just to clarify a little:K and L comes in "soft" coils, L also comes in hard lengths, M only comes in hard lengths. I think K can also be had in hard lengths, but I am not certain.

      There is a difference in the designation of "tube" and "pipe" but I do not remember the difference right now. Someone will have the answer shortly, or I will look it up and bring the answer.


      Check this chart for the correct information
      http://www.copper.org/applications/p..._tube_tbl.html
      Last edited by APHCO; 01-21-2009, 08:45 PM. Reason: add chart

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      • #4
        Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

        K,L,M, ACR & DWV are available in hard. K,L & ACR are available in soft.

        Mark

        BTW: Copper water lines are called both tube and pipe while ACR is generally called tube.
        Last edited by ToUtahNow; 01-21-2009, 09:21 PM. Reason: BTW
        "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

        I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

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        • #5
          Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

          Also, not sure about the USA but in Canada "M" pipe has information printed with RED ink, "L" pipe uses BLUE ink, and "K" pipe uses GREEN ink, so you can spot it a mile away, especially on new pipe.
          Last edited by Chemeng; 01-21-2009, 11:29 PM. Reason: Correction for GREEN ink.

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          • #6
            Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

            Type M copper is what a lot of new constuction plumbers like to use above the floor, so they can make more $$$$
            Never bought a stick of it my self.

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            • #7
              Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

              Originally posted by DELCASE View Post
              Type M copper is what a lot of new constuction plumbers like to use above the floor, so they can make more $$$$
              Never bought a stick of it my self.
              Production tract homes only
              Apartments = L
              Custom = L
              Commercial = L
              Condos and tracts can be spec'd out L

              ADAM

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              • #8
                Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

                Before switching to mostly drain cleaning, I used type "L"

                I don't even carry soldering gear anymore.

                Lenny

                Pronounced A-Bear Drain Care

                I know, it doesn't make sense.


                http://www.hebertdraincare.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

                  [QUOTE"Chemeng"]Also, not sure about the USA but in Canada "M" pipe has information printed with RED ink, "L" pipe uses BLUE ink, and "K" pipe uses YELLOW ink, so you can spot it a mile away, especially on new pipe.[/QUOTE]

                  Sorry, but K comes with green ink, and yellow is DWV.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

                    Thanks to APHCO for posting that chart, which I should have looked for first, because as is often the case, there is a wider variety of product available than just the few types we see in day to day use!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

                      i see to remember from trade school about type "H".

                      i think it was used for refridgeration.

                      Vince

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                      • #12
                        Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

                        Quite a few years ago, there was an alloy copper pipe that was available at plumbing suppliers. It had a black mark on it and was thinner than M, as I recall. Must not have been a success - it's been a long time since I've heard of it.

                        And I ran into some odd pipe in a house out in the country - I don't remember what color it was but it was Nibco and had some odd name on it. I just went out and looked at my scrap pile and can no longer read the lettering on the pipe. It's incredibly thin and should never have been used for water distribution.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

                          For hot water baseboard radiation they use a thin pipe that has the fins installed on it. Maybe that is what you remember. I have never seen any designation written on it but it is so thin you can almost flex it between your fingers.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

                            Herk,
                            You say "alloy copper". Was the pipe still the typical "copper" colour or was it a bit "bronzey" or "brassey" coloured?? Just interested....

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                            • #15
                              Re: Copper Type K, L and M difference question.

                              Vince "H" was for heating,and had white white markings

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