From providing clean drinking water to draining away wastewater, plumbing is a vital part of our daily lives.
So today, we’ll look at 10 essential innovations in plumbing history. From ancient times to modern-day, these inventions have revolutionized the plumbing industry and made our lives better:
- Ancient aqueducts: Aqueducts have been around since ancient times and were used to transport water from one place to another. The first known aqueduct was built in Babylon around 2,500 BC, and its purpose was to provide residents with access to fresh water from the Euphrates River. Aqueducts were used in many parts of the world, including ancient Greece and Rome, and remain an important part of many modern-day cities.
- The flush toilet: The modern flush toilet was invented by Sir John Harrington in 1596. The device was designed to allow users to flush away waste with a simple lever. Initially, the toilet was seen as a novelty and was widely adopted in the late 19th century. Today, it is the most common type of toilet used in households worldwide.
- Lead pipe: Lead pipes were used to create a watertight seal between two pieces of pipe and have been used in plumbing since ancient times. Although lead can be dangerous if ingested, it was used extensively in plumbing systems until the 19th century, when its toxicity became known. Today, lead pipes have been replaced with safer materials.
- Trap and vent system: The trap and vent system is a plumbing system that prevents sewer gases from entering a house or building. It consists of a p-trap (a curved section of pipe) installed underneath a sink or bathtub and a vent pipe connected to the roof. This system helps to keep the air in the house or building fresh and free of unpleasant odors.
- Siphon: The siphon is an ingenious device that utilizes the power of gravity to move water from one place to another. The device consists of two tubes, one filled with water and the other with air. When one end of the tube is placed higher than the other, it creates a vacuum that causes the water to move from one end to the other.
- Pressure regulators: Pressure regulators are devices installed in the plumbing system to regulate water flow. This is done by adjusting the pressure of the water coming from the supply line to an appropriate level for the given fixture or appliance. Pressure regulators help to ensure that the water pressure is consistent throughout the system.
- PEX piping: PEX piping is a type of flexible plastic piping used in many modern plumbing systems. It is lightweight, corrosion-resistant, and easy to install. PEX is typically used for hot and cold water lines, as well as radiant heating systems.
- Residential water meters: Water meters are devices installed in a home or building to measure water use. They are typically installed at the main water line and are used to track water usage and bill customers for their usage.
- Check valves: Check valves are devices installed in the plumbing system to prevent the backflow of water. They are typically used in drainage systems that allow water to flow in one direction only.
- Backflow prevention: Backflow prevention devices are installed in the plumbing system to prevent the backflow of water or contaminants from entering the water supply. These devices are typically installed at the main water line and can be used to protect the water supply from contamination.
Plumbing technology has come a long way over the years, and it is hard to imagine life without these essential innovations. From ancient aqueducts to modern-day devices, these inventions have made our lives easier, for sure!
And just in case your Inland Empire home plumbing isn’t making your life easier, and you’re having trouble, Ballard is here to help!
Contact us online or call us at 909-297-1914.