The history of copper in the plumbing industry

Copper tubing has been used in plumbing systems for a very long time. In fact, the earliest evidence of using the material in the conveyance of water was found at Abusir, Egypt and dates back to around 2,750 B.C. The Pyramid of Sahure was built in 2480 B.C. to commemorate the death of the pharaoh. A mortuary complex was built around the main structure including the smaller Cult Pyramid and a High Temple. It is this temple where a basin with an outflow made of copper tube was found. The drainage system featured approximately 380 metres of copper pipes.

The Romans also used copper tubing, as seen at Herculaneum, the ancient Roman town that was destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 A.D. The town was preserved by the pyroclastic material from the eruption, providing us with a vivid picture of what life was like for the inhabitants. Evidence of copper tubes in drainage systems was found in the town during excavations.

It wasn’t until the 1930s that copper became truly popular. Historically it was a valuable material that was only installed on prestigious properties and those with wealthy inhabitants. With industrial advancement it became more affordable and common. Advancements in plumbing, pipe fittings and the creation of light gauge tubing helped boost the usage too.

Copper pipes are very common now and can be seen in all kinds of settings. The material can be manipulated in a number of ways, including bending, expansion and reduction to suit a wide variety of needs. This flexibility is coupled with the fact that the metal is an excellent conductor of heat and electricity, which makes it useful for a wide range of tasks including plumbing, heating and electrical installations.

Whether you work with copper, steel or any other material, tube drilling and manipulation needs to be done with care to avoid damaging the tubing. At Multiform Tubes we have extensive experience in the field and can provide a comprehensive service to suit all kinds of criteria. We work with clients from several industries and deliver the highest standards on each and every job.