Plumbing Fixtures

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Plumbing fixtures are the parts of a plumbing system that you actually use. Plumbing fixture supply stores carry a wide range of faucets, bathtubs, sinks and other plumbing fixtures. Your choices will affect the look of your bathroom and kitchen.

Types of Plumbing Fixtures

Plumbing fixtures are the external components of your plumbing system. For instance, showers and sinks are considered fixtures, but the pipes that deliver water to them are not.

Plumbing fixtures are the predominant features of bathrooms and kitchens and significantly impact the look and feel of the room. Most renovations include replacing at least some of these fixtures.

Know Your Fixture Units

"Fixture units" are plumbing measurements that estimate the flow rate and drainage rates of individual fixtures. One fixture unit corresponds to roughly one cubic foot of water moved per minute. Fixture units determine what size of pipes should connect fixtures to the main pipes, and should be calculated by a plumber or plumbing contractor.

Plumbing Fixture Supply Shopping Options

Dedicated plumbing fixture supply stores offer the most options when it comes to plumbing fixtures, though these items are also often available at home improvement stores. Following are some fixtures that you'll need for your plumbing system.

Plumbing Fixtures: Bathtubs and Showers

Usually the largest plumbing fixtures in the home, bathtubs and showers come in a variety of models, sizes and materials. A bathtub may be made of cast iron, porcelain, acrylic or fiberglass.

Showers may be combined with bathtubs or installed separately, making them valuable fixtures for small bathrooms. Your choice of shower head affects water conservation and the strength of the shower stream. Most plumbing fixture supply stores offer overhead, massaging and flexible hose showerheads.

Plumbing Fixtures: Faucets

Faucets, or taps, come in a wide range of styles. Updating taps in a bathroom or kitchen can transform the room, even if larger plumbing fixtures are left intact. Most faucets are brass-based and coated with chrome, brass, nickel or colored enamels.

Plumbing Fixtures: Sinks

Sinks may appear in different parts of your home. Kitchen sinks may be single or double unit models, with a high faucet to allow clearance for pots and pans. Laundry sinks are large, with a slanting front lip to make scrubbing clothes easier. With the widespread use of clothes washers, laundry sinks are less common than they once were.

In the bathroom, sinks may be standalone "pedestal" sinks, wall-mounted or supported by ornamental legs. Drop-in bathroom sinks are common plumbing fixtures designed to fit into larger bathroom countertops.

Plumbing Fixtures: Toilets

The most essential plumbing fixtures in any home, toilets come in multiple styles. Modern styles often have water-conserving capabilities, including smaller cisterns and efficient flushing mechanisms.

Many plumbing fixture supply stores even carry dual flush toilets, which use a small amount of water to flush liquid waste and a larger volume for solid waste.

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