Ductile iron is a type of metal — introduced into the marketplace in 1955 — that retains all of the qualities of cast iron, such as machinability and corrosion resistance, and has newer qualities such as additional strength, lighter weight and durability. Ductile iron pipe is growing in popularity above other pipe materials such as PVC, polyethylene, steel and concrete, and is used today for thousands of water and wastewater systems.
Ductile Iron Superiority
Pipes are subjected to myriad destructive forces, such as internal pressure, cyclic loads, excavation, earth pressure, frozen ground, deep trenches and construction handling, so a strong pipe is always welcome in any type of construction. Ductile iron pipes more than exceed expectations for strength and durability, and ductile iron is enthusiastically machined for engine parts such as crankshafts and connecting rods.
Ductile iron’s superiority of strength is proven by a maximum psi tensile strength of 60,000 as compared with a PVC psi tensile strength of around 7,500. The strength of ductile iron pipes allows it to resist elemental pressures, reducing the need for maintenance.
The improved qualities of ductile iron pipes are the result of an improved manufacturing process that alters the graphite qualities of iron. Ductile iron pipe has a spherical graphite form as opposed to the flake form found in cast iron pipe.
Ductile iron pipe has the greatest inside diameter of any pipe material, so it has superior hydraulic capabilities. Ductile iron pipe is easy to tap and install and requires less support than other pipe types. However, because it may still corrode over a long period of time, manufacturers use a polyethylene casing over the ductile iron pipe to protect it from corrosive substance found in the ground.
Ductile Iron Pipe Use
Ductile iron pipe use has been popular since its introduction into the marketplace in 1955. Ductile iron pipe can be used beneath heavy traffic, at river crossings, in rocky terrain and in expansive and unstable soils. Construction companies install it without complex line-and-grade drawings and can tap and cut it in the field without compromising its strength.
Ductile iron pipes can also be glass-lined to combat interior buildup of sludge and scum in wastewater systems.
Use ductile iron pipes when constructing your own place of business or home. Using it will ensure that the water pipes last an exceptionally long time and protect against internal damage caused by weaker pipe materials such as PVC, polyethylene, steel and concrete.