Plumbing Schematic

How To Read A Pluming Schematic

A plumbing schematic or diagram is basic and necessary, if you live in a state or jurisdiction where you are permitted to do your own plumbing. Many states allow homeowners to do various plumbing jobs, especially repairs, so knowing a few of the plumbing symbols is important.

Sometimes called a plumbing “diagram”, a plumbing schematic (hand drawn is fine) may be needed to file for a plumbing permit and also when you go to buy the parts.

If you upgrade, replace or move any type of plumbing fixture you may need a permit.Check with your local building department. They may tell you a professional plumber is also needed for specific jobs, too.

Certain jurisdictions require a professional for certain parts of the overall plumbing. For safe, licensed and certified plumbers click the image below. You’ll be taken to a simple form that you can use to describe your job and receive up to four free quotes. No obligation and fast guaranteed service.

emergency plumber

The drawing (above) was made using only those six symbols (above right) to build the finished project, a combination tub/shower, (illustration below). 

If you’ve decided to do the plumbing yourself, great! Take your time and gather all the knowledge and information you can, then go scout out the parts. There are manytypes of pipes and fittings but today, PVC rules. For more ideas on plumbing designs, bathroom ideas and how to think about designing plumbing, click bathroom plumbing diagram.

Obviously, the more you can do yourself, the better off you’ll be financially.

Before you do anything, however, make sure you know how to shut off the main water supply to the house. Most homes have a shut-off valve contained in a small concrete box in the ground close to the street (below). A small rectangular, round cornered cover at ground level—with the word “Water” embossed on it—can be opened, and the shut-off valve closed using a tool called a Water Shut-Off Wrench (below), available at hardware stores and big boxes for a few dollars.

Every homeowner should have one of these for emergencies.

Finally, here is a plumbing symbols sheet that has all—and we mean all—of the symbols you’ll ever need.

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Updated: October 9, 2015 — 1:12 am

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