Increasing Confidence in the Safety of Plastic Pipe

Plastic pipes have been used in the water industry since the 1950s, but they are still thought of as a new material. Since the 1950s, plastic pipes have become a key product in the industry as materials have become more durable and cost effective. Now, manufacturers making and utilities installing the pipe must build trust in this “new” material and be prepared to stand behind the safety of their product.

Building trust is not always easy but can be accomplished by emphasizing the health and safety standards being implemented and educating the public about them. The National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) standards process has been accredited by the American National Standard Institute (ANSI) and the Standards Council of Canada (SCC). These organizations develop standards through a public process with industry representatives, certification bodies, laboratories, regulators, and users to make sure products are safe. Adding to their credibility, these standards are recognized worldwide. Standards that can be utilized to increase confidence in the safety of plastic pipe have been listed below.

  1. NSF/ANSI/CAN 61 – establishes standards for minimum health effect requirement for chemical impurities that are indirectly passed on to drinking water from products, components, and materials utilized in drinking water systems.
  2. NSF/ANSI 14 – established standards for minimum health effect requirements for plastic piping systems, their components, and related materials.
  3. NSF Guideline 533 – establishes a standard for ingredients being evaluated for health effects to be deemed safe for use in drinking water products.

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