DIY & Improvements

10 most common plumbing jargons deciphered

Every profession has its own index of special terms which may be confusing for the layman. Whilst lawyers may talk about civil litigation and doctors refer to a broken bone as a fractured femur, plumbing also has hundreds of different terms which may be hard for people to understand at first.

Problems with the utilities can be extremely worrying for homeowners, so it is important that people understand as many specialist plumbing terms as possible. Understanding the jargon will put people’s mind at ease and won’t leave them in the dark about problems which they are unfamiliar with. Read on to find out about ten common phrases of plumbing slang.


Overflow Tube

An overflow tube is one of the most vital components of a toilet. This is a vertical tube inserted inside the tank that diverts water down into the bowl if that ballcock happens to be damaged or is malfunctioning in any way. As the name suggests, the tube will prevent the tank from overflowing with excess water, which could otherwise cause a leak to happen.

People should make sure to identify the overflow tube so that they can identify if it is not doing its job properly. If the ballcock has broken and water is not automatically diverting into the toilet bowl, it is time to have the overflow replaced by a plumber in Perth.

Plumbing Snake

This has nothing to do with actual snakes, however, this piece of equipment is designed to be streamlined as the name suggests. Dealing with blocked pipes is one of the most common parts of a plumber’s job, and this long, thin tool allows them to break up blockages and flush them out.

Scald Guard

Extreme changes in water temperature (especially in showers) can be dangerous for homeowners. The scald guard is a valve which prevents these drastic temperature changes from occurring. A professional plumber in Perth will be able to fix a broken scald guard.

Water Hammer Arrestor

Water hammer arrestors sound complicated but they perform a simple job. When a fixture’s supply is suddenly turned off, the pipes may make a loud noise. However, this piece of equipment is designed to stop this noise from happening.


Smells from the toilet can be extremely unpleasant, so it is important that any foul odours are minimised. The vents are sloped sections of pipe which allow these unpleasant gases to escape to the outside of the house without causing a smell inside.


A trap is a curved section of the drain which is designed to trap small amounts of water. Odorous sewer gases are held in the water and prevented from entering the bathroom.

Wye Fitting

A fitting that allows drain sections to be put together at 45-degree angles.


The rim or end of a pipe shaft.

Wax Ring

A seal located between the toilet and floor flange to prevent odours.


A rubber flap which allows flushing to occur. This lets water flow from the tank to the bowl.

Use this guide to decipher plumbing jargon.

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October 26, 2016