Plumbing. What would the world be like without it? While most people move through their daily lives giving little thought to the idea, much of the world we live in today would be impossible without plumbing. Everything from irrigation to sanitation to the incredible freedom of living wherever pipes can reach is enabled by the industry of plumbing.
Importance of Plumbing
Unless one's livelihood depends on it, plumbing is among the assumed facts of life that are ignored even while they are in use. That is, until it stops working. When the toilet backs up, the sink stops working, or the water heater leaks, suddenly nothing else is quite as important. Then, no matter the time of day, it becomes an emergency to get the pipes flowing again or to stop flowing. At such times, the plumber is the person to be-the one with the power to make things right.
How Plumbing Works
Plumbing is the art and science of getting liquids, primarily water, from where they are to where they are wanted. From one starting point, be it an ocean, lake, river, depository that collects rain, or a tank that is filled from another source, the liquid flows through a series of pipes, tubes, and tunnels that follow often complicated paths to get to the end user.
The consumer, if everything is going as it should, needs only worry about managing the flow of water at the faucet for incoming, and the drains and toilet for the outgoing. Then those same complicated paths, or ones right next to them, are used to remove the liquids from the end user to another end point, typically a waste water treatment center.
When it comes to the skill of plumbing, there are many grades. The do-it-yourself plumber might get started with a toilet that runs all night, taking the tank lid off and jiggling the parts inside to determine what makes it tick. The serious student of plumbing may put a toilet together himself, performing the installation in a new home. When it comes to the front line experts, the plumbers themselves, you have men and women who know their PVC from their copper, and always manage to get the stopper in right side up.
However you approach plumbing, and for whatever the reason, there is a wealth of science, math, physics, and creativity that go into this most necessary field.