Thinking of using PVC pipe for air?

This is where bits of wisdom will be stored, a frequently asked question section with answers.

Moderators: Harold_V, WJH

User avatar
SteveHGraham
Posts: 7030
Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2009 7:55 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Thinking of using PVC pipe for air?

Post by SteveHGraham » Sat Apr 08, 2017 10:13 pm

Yes, I know what table salt is. There are other salts of chlorine. I said "salts" because I didn't know what the chlorine turned into after reacting with pee, mucus, sweat, dead skin, excrement, and so on. I figured maybe the machine was able to salvage some of the chlorine by breaking up some of the compounds it formed. I read about it today, and it's impossible to get a straight answer, because 99% of the sites that mention electrolysis chlorination are trying to sell the machines. One site says the chlorine rejoins the sodium on the way back to the filter.

The Genie-Chlor people used to bring salt in, in bags the size of pillows. Today I read that the pool my family had would have required 1,000 pounds of salt in order to get the chlorination process up and running.

The prep school I went to before high school shocked its pool one day and promptly put us in it. The pool was outdoors, and you could smell the chlorine fifty feet away! In classes later that day, the kids could barely see.
Every hard-fried egg began life sunny-side up.

John Hasler
Posts: 913
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2016 4:05 pm
Location: Elmwood, Wisconsin

Re: Thinking of using PVC pipe for air?

Post by John Hasler » Sun Apr 09, 2017 9:36 pm

The chlorine ends up forming various complicated compounds with the organics. The sodium forms sodium hydroxide.

> One site says the chlorine rejoins the sodium on the way back to the filter.

Don't buy anything from them. They know less than nothing about their product.

User avatar
liveaboard
Posts: 513
Joined: Sun Dec 08, 2013 1:40 pm
Location: southern Portugal
Contact:

Re: Thinking of using PVC pipe for air?

Post by liveaboard » Wed Aug 01, 2018 4:19 pm

I used PEX tubing; runs through 3 shops and a short spell underground.
I have no idea if it's good in the long run, but it works great now.

b4autodark
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:06 am

Re: Thinking of using PVC pipe for air?

Post by b4autodark » Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:26 pm

John Hasler wrote:
Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:07 am
SteveHGraham wrote:They bypassed the safety switches! And they weren't just using PVC for air...they were using it for an explosive gas! That's Darwin territory.

In fairness, I would imagine hydrogen would also blow iron pipe into smithereens.

Not surprised that it happened at a university. Common sense and the kind of sense that helps people get good grades are not always found together.
[You wouldn't want to use iron pipe around chlorine.]
What do you base this on? I worked as a plumber at a major city water works and we had liquid chlorine delivered by railroad tanker to the filter plant. All the piping was schedule 80 socket welded carbon steel pipe from the railcar platform to the diffusers, the entire system. Even the railroad tanker was carbon steel!

We had to disassemble certain portions of piping annually for inspection, I never remember and corrosion. We chlorinated steel water mains whenever we got done working on them. They carry chlorinated water their whole service life.

Mr Ron
Posts: 1618
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2009 12:36 pm
Location: Vancleave, Mississippi

Re: Thinking of using PVC pipe for air?

Post by Mr Ron » Tue Sep 25, 2018 3:02 pm

I have heard good and bad things about using PVC for compressed air. When it shatters it can be lethal is one. I have used it for years in my shop and have not had any problems with it. My thoughts on PVC for air is: to run PVC in places where it will not be exposed to people, so if it does explode, it won't harm anyone. Use it only for low pressure <100 psig.
Mr.Ron from South Mississippi

User avatar
tornitore45
Posts: 1555
Joined: Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:24 am
Location: USA Texas, Austin

Re: Thinking of using PVC pipe for air?

Post by tornitore45 » Wed Sep 26, 2018 6:30 am

I understand it like this:
You can compress air
The energy from compressing it is being held by the pipe
You cannot compress liquid
Compressor technicians fill air tanks with water when they pressure test.
The energy of compressing air is stored 99.99999999% in the air and the balance is stored in the pipe.
Pipes, like water are uncompressible (to a certain extent) that is why water, like steel, stores only a infinitesimal energy when compressed during pressure testing.

On the other hand metal bending may store large energy like a spring.
Mauro Gaetano
in Austin TX

User avatar
steamin10
Posts: 6691
Joined: Sun Jun 08, 2003 11:52 pm
Location: NW Indiana. Close to Lake Michigan S. tip

Re: Thinking of using PVC pipe for air?

Post by steamin10 » Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:38 pm

DO NOT USE PVC WHERE THERE IS OIL, OR SUN. Better to use a rubber line and wind it around the shop. When the pvc degrades it will blow at the least cause, and the shattered pieces are missiles that are unpleasant. Spend a dollar and avoid the rush.
Big Dave, former Millwright, Electrician, Environmental conditioning, and back yard Fixxit guy. Now retired, persuing boats, trains, and broken relics.
We have enough youth, how about a fountain of Smart. My computer beat me at chess, but not kickboxing
It is not getting caught in the rain, its learning to dance in it. People saying good morning, should have to prove it.

Post Reply