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Material Selection for Water Fittings

Written by: Aaron Cheng, Rachel Lee

Date: 19/7/2022

There are many factors to consider before selecting a suitable material for the fittings in your water pipelines. Whether you are looking for PolyVinyl Chloride (PVC) or stainless steel fittings, it can be difficult to determine the best material for your needs if you are unaware of the various factors in consideration.

Choosing the right one

When it comes to picking the right material for your water fittings, there are a few key factors to take into account. From regulation requirements to maintenance, all these factors are important for the selection of the ideal material.

Regulatory requirements

Consider factors such as specific regulatory requirements when deciding on the best material for your fittings. It is critical to ensure that the water fittings are compliant with the standards stipulated by The Public Utilities Board (PUB). This factor is especially important for water fittings that have direct contact with potable water. 


Materials like steel fittings perform the best due to its strong corrosion resistance. While some argue brass fittings are easier to mould and are more economical, they are more susceptible to dezincification – a form of corrosion, under certain pH levels. This makes brass fittings more suitable for plumbing jobs and non-potable applications in general. In addition, stainless steel fittings can also be easily sterilised, which is greatly beneficial for the biotechnological and dairy industries.

Temperature requirements

Businesses that have processes involving high temperatures require fittings with low thermal expansions. As PVC fittings tend to expand more than steel ones under heat, it can damage your piping system, making it less suitable for high temperature environments. Steel, on the other hand, can operate at higher temperatures of up to 800°C, in comparison to PVC fittings that reach warping temperatures at only 60°C. This makes steel more suitable for industrial applications and PVC for processes like irrigation systems and water treatment.

Maintenance requirements and costs

When it comes to choosing the material for your water fittings, it is important to take into consideration the installation costs as well as maintenance requirements. Choosing a serviceable and sturdy material can help you avoid costly and long-term maintenance costs. Depending on the material’s durability and resistance to corrosion, the maintenance requirements of your fittings may vary. This is a brief breakdown of the installation costs and maintenance requirements of each material:


PVC: Relatively Cheaper, long service life, incurs fewer maintenance costs

Stainless Steel: Highly expensive, long service life, low maintenance

Brass: Relatively cheaper than stainless steel, long service life


There are various factors that you have to take into account before purchasing fittings, one being the material. It is also crucial to thoroughly understand the purpose of the fitting and the location of its installation to determine the right fitting for your needs. If you are looking for compliant and reliable water saving fittings and technology, check out Ecoflow’s WAVE Valve. 



Ako Uk (n.d). Stainless Steel Sterile Valves are used in Aseptic & Pharmaceutical Applications. AKO UK Blog.


Jr, G.W. (2021, July 5). PVC, Brass, Stainless or Carbon Steel? Pumps and Systems Magazine. 


Jr, G.W. (2021, April 23). Not all valves are equal: Picking the right material for the job. VALVES & ACTUATORS. 


Packard, G. (2021, April 22). 5 factors that impact the lifespan of ball valves. VALVES & ACTUATORS. 


Water Works (n.d.). Brass Valves: Quality valving solutions you can trust. [Brochure]. 

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