Sewer pipes for outdoor sewers: types and overview of the best brands

Vasily Borutsky
Checked by a specialist: Vasily Borutsky
Author: Lyudmila Gudkova
Last update: August 2019

Are you worried about arranging internal communications and a system for discharging drains outside the house? Agree, it’s great when all the benefits of civilization are present in a country house, despite its remoteness from the metropolis.

But for the construction of the system you need sewer pipes for external sewage, but you do not know which is better to choose?

We will tell you which material is suitable for different operating conditions - the article discusses the characteristics of pipes from existing materials, the advantages and disadvantages of each option.

A rating of the best manufacturers of plastic and cast iron pipelines is also given, photographs are selected with an image of their products and video recommendations from drainage professionals.

External piping requirements

External sewer networks have to operate in difficult conditions. Pipes filled with earth are forced to carry the weight of the soil on which people, and often cars, can move.

They are also affected by soil water, which can provoke a displacement of the docking nodes, which can lead to depressurization of the sewer network.

Systems have to constantly resist the static / dynamic effects of wastewater transported through pipes.

Installation of an external sewage system
External sewer pipes used to install wastewater removal systems have to be underground in difficult conditions

That is why special requirements are imposed on the elements of external sewer networks.

Pipes should have such qualities as:

  • strength and stiffness;
  • the ability to tolerate temperature fluctuations without losing performance;
  • frost resistance;
  • wear resistance, long service life;
  • resistance to aggressive chemical environments.

For the manufacture of external sewer systems, various materials can be used (polymers, steel, cast iron), however, all of them must correspond to the above factors.

It should also be borne in mind that the quality of the pipeline is influenced not only by the specific properties of the pipes, but also by the quality of the installation and laying of the system.

Our site also has other useful materials on the rules for arranging sewage.

We recommend that you familiarize yourself with them:

Differences between external and internal sewerage

The pipes that are used for laying external systems differ significantly from the analogues used for house communications.

Detailed information on pipes for internal sewerage is discussed in this article.

Pipes for outdoor sewage
External sewer systems differ from internal pipes in a bright orange color, as well as increased density and wall thickness

Characteristic features include:

  1. Colour. Orange (red) color, which facilitates easy pipe detection, therefore avoiding unintentional network damage during earthwork.
  2. Wall thickness. For parts for external sewage, this parameter is always higher than for internal (when using PVC systems, these figures are 3.2-3.4 mm versus 2 mm), since the pipeline laid underground has to endure heavy loads.
  3. Materials. Red pipes are usually made of materials of high resistance (for example, unplasticized polyvinyl chloride, which has special strength).
  4. Heat resistance. Due to the increased thickness and reliability of the walls, as well as the addition of specially selected components, the heat resistance of external systems is higher than internal. But they may also need insulation. We recommend that you familiarize yourself with the views insulation for sewage.
  5. Life time. Orange products tend to last longer than gray ones.
  6. Price tag. The cost of elements for external sewage is approximately 20% higher than for internal.

Experts warn about the inadmissibility of using gray pipes for laying external sewers. It is difficult for them to withstand increased loads (especially for a long time), which can lead to breakthroughs and accidents.

Let us consider in more detail what materials can be used for the manufacture of external sewer systems.

Classification of pipes by type of material

The most popular among users are plastic pipes for sewage. But, in addition to plastic, external pipes for sewer wiring can be made of other materials. Let's look at the features of each type of pipe, highlighting their advantages.

View # 1 - plastic products

Sewer polymer pipes appeared not too long ago, but they became widespread, displacing traditional analogues in the core market.

Such components have a number of indisputable advantages:

  • a light weightfacilitating transportation, storage, laying;
  • smooth inner surface, contributing to the smooth passage of runoff water and preventing the subsidence of salts and other sediments. Due to this feature, with proper installation and operation in plastic pipes, blockages are almost never formed;
  • wear resistance - plastic pipes do not rot, do not corrode;
  • exploitation - such products have a sufficient life, although less than their cast-iron counterparts (maximum 50 years).

Most often, components made of the following materials are used to manufacture external sewer systems.

Option # 1 - pipes made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC)

Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) - Available popular plastic, widely used for the production of various products, including pipes for internal / external networks.

Such components are especially recommended for sewer systems requiring a large bore (collector, culvert, storm).

PVC pipes
PVC pipes are widely used for laying external sewage networks, however they are sensitive to aggressive chemicals and liquids having a temperature above 60 degrees

Among the most significant shortcomings of PVC pipes are:

  • Sensitivity to aggressive materials. If it is planned to remove acids and oils through such components, it is better to purchase special PVC-U pipes with special properties.
  • Material temperature extension. Because of this property, it is not practical to install such parts for transporting hot liquids (over 60 degrees C).

PVC pipes have the following positive properties: good resistance to mechanical stress, high strength and resistance to ultraviolet light, making such products suitable for open areas.

Two types of PVC pipes can be distinguished:

  1. Pressurewithstanding high pressure (<10 atmospheres). They are used in systems experiencing constant increased exposure to various environments.
  2. Non-pressure. Recommended for systems with unforeseen high pressure (fluid in the pipe moves by gravity at a moderate speed).

Most often, in the external pipelines, the second version of the products is used.

PVC pipes may consist of one or two layers. In the latter case, unplasticized material is used for the outer layer, and for the inner layer, recycled foamed polymer.

PVC pipe sockets
The connection of PVC pipes is usually done using sockets. In some cases, cold welding and gluing are used.

According to the stiffness class, PVC components differ in the following categories:

  • Rigid pipes (class S) with maximum wall thickness, designed for installation at a depth of up to 8 meters. This type can be used for any work, but it is most often used in industry.
  • Medium Rigid Products (Class N) used at a depth of 2-6 meters. They are suitable for installation of the pipeline under not too busy roads.
  • Light components (class L)sufficient to create systems that are laid at a shallow depth (0.8-2 m). Not suitable for laying under the carriageway.

The most common pipe for external sewage is a product with a diameter of 10-11 cm. In this case, sewage from a country house is easily transported over the network.

Unplasticized polyvinyl chloride pipes are used in underground installation of external communications where it is known that there will be no significant load on communications.

If this factor is taken into account, then the scope of application for PVC products is quite wide:

More information about PVC and HDPE pipes for external sewage we reviewed in our other article.

Option # 2 - polypropylene products

Pipes of this type are not too often used for laying external sewer networks due to insufficient rigidity of polypropylene parts.

However, they can be used for laying pressure-free storm sewers or for installing systems in sandy soils.

Among the advantages of this type of product:

  • High heat resistance. The laid systems withstand the transport of hot liquids (up to 80, and occasionally up to 95 degrees Celsius).
  • Chemical inertness. Plastic is not subject to corrosion, does not emit harmful substances.

In addition to the already mentioned insufficient density, its sensitivity to ultraviolet light also relates to the minuses of polypropylene.

Polypropylene pipes
When storing and laying pipes made of polypropylene, it is important to prevent direct sunlight

Option # 3 - polyethylene pipes

Such material is widely used for external pressure pipelines. The advantages of PE pipes include:

  • ability to withstand water shock;
  • resistance to active substances;
  • long service life (50 years or more).

Among the shortcomings of such products can be called susceptibility to ultraviolet and insufficient heat resistance - polyethylene pipes can be used in the temperature range from -40 to +40 degrees Celsius.

Polyethylene pipes
To maintain the integrity of the system of polyethylene pipes, it is important to remember: the higher the temperature of the fluid transported through the pipes, the lower the pressure level should be

Option # 4 - Corrugated Products

A common disadvantage of plastic sewage elements is their lack of strength. To correct this defect, a special design was invented - a corrugated pipe with greater mechanical rigidity.

Thanks to the folded outer surface of such products, their area increases. This allows you to redistribute the pressure exerted by the soil, as a result of which the pipelines withstand increased loads.

Corrugated pipes
Corrugated structures are very popular. They can improve the stiffness and density of plastic pipes, while maintaining light weight products

Two types of corrugated pipes are distinguished:

  1. Single layer with a kind of ribbed surface inside and out. Such material is relatively cheap, but the drainage is much worse.
  2. Double layerhaving a folded outer surface and a smooth inner. Due to this, the flow freely passes through the pipe, without forming deposits and blockages.

Similar products can be made from various types of polymers. The most commonly used low-pressure polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride.

Diagram of a two-layer corrugated pipe
The diagram shows the device of a two-layer corrugated pipe used in the installation of external sewers. The part consists of an outer folded layer and a smooth inner surface

Pipes with a corrugated surface are connected by the bell method using special rubber cuffs. When installing pipelines, it is also possible to apply the cold welding method.

In another article on our website, we examined in detail the characteristics and features of the application corrugated sewage pipes.

View # 2 - asbestos-cement pipes

For the production of such products, a mixture of Portland cement with mineral asbestos fiber is used.

Such systems have a number of important advantages:

  • Durability - the term of operation can reach half a century and even a hundred years.
  • Relative lightnessgreatly facilitating installation.
  • Resistance to aggressive environments. Asbestos cement pipes withstand almost all chemicals.
  • Resistance to overgrowing of a bell.

The disadvantage of this material is fragility and sensitivity to mechanical damage.

Asbestos-cement pipes
The main disadvantage of asbestos-cement pipes is the extreme fragility. When buying such products, you need to carefully inspect them to identify chips and cracks

When making a purchase, it is important to carefully examine the ends of the pipes, where various damage is most often observed. At

View # 3 - ceramic products

Even in ancient times, ceramics was used for the manufacture of parts of the sewer system.

This material is popular today, thanks to such advantages as:

  • Chemical inertness. Ceramic systems allow transportation of almost any liquid medium.
  • The special structure of the inner surface, which prevents the formation of deposits and deposits of salts and other substances.
  • Temperature resistant environmental and fluids passing through the pipe.
  • Easy laying.

Among the shortcomings can be noted the fragility and small length of the pipes, which is why when laying the system you have to increase the number of joints.

Ceramic Sewer Pipes
Pipes made of ceramics are the most ancient type of products used in the laying and organization of sewer systems. They are made from refractory clays, coated with acid glaze. On one side they have a bell formed for connection

On sale there are ceramic elements with a diameter of 100-600 mm, which can have two connection options: with a bell and with a thread.

Before installing the pipes, you should check the quality by inspecting the appearance of the parts and tapping them. The rattling sound that appeared upon impact indicates the presence of a hidden crack.

View # 4 - cast iron systems

For a long time, the most popular solution for the arrangement of external sewers was considered bell-shaped pipes made of cast iron. As a rule, for private construction, elements with a diameter of 16 cm are enough.

Cast iron pipes
The main disadvantage of traditional cast-iron pipes is the heavy weight, which is why the use of special equipment is required for laying communication networks

Systems made of this material have many positive qualities. Among them, high strength, allowing the pipeline to withstand heavy loads and durability - the service life of cast-iron systems is at least several tens of years.

As well as resistance to temperature extremes and a fairly simple installation, involving the use of a bell method.

At the same time, one cannot fail to mention some of the disadvantages of such products:

  • Heavy weight. Due to the severity of the elements, it is impossible to lay a cast-iron pipeline without the use of special equipment.
  • Sedimentation tendency on the surface: over time, this can lead to blockages.
  • Inability to use on a number of soils, especially in salt marshes.
  • Fairly high price traditional cast iron products.

At present, cast-iron pipes are used for laying industrial communications, while in individual construction they were almost everywhere replaced by cheaper and lighter plastic analogues.

To see more information about the characteristics, types and installation of cast-iron sewer pipes, go to this link.

Top Sewer Pipe Manufacturers

Many foreign and domestic companies are engaged in the production of pipes from various materials used for laying external sewers.

Rank # 1 - Dutch plastic maker Wavin

Wavin, founded in Holland in 1955, specializes in the production of sewer and water plastic pipes. The company's products are extremely in demand throughout Europe.

Wavin Pipes
The Dutch company Wavin is well known in European countries.The company offers a wide range of pipes and fittings for external sewage

For outdoor work, the manufacturer produces Pragma corrugated polypropylene pipes with double walls, as well as other product options.

Pragma components are 6 meters long; they are easily connected to the system because they have a bell at one end and a rubber seal at the other. The manufacturer recommends the use of these products to create a network of external gravity drainage.

Place # 2 - the international company POLYPLASTIC

POLYPLASTIK is an international company whose units are located in the CIS countries (Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus).

Among the range of branded products, a large place is occupied by all kinds of sewer elements, including external pipes made of various types of polymers (polyethylene, PAH, polypropylene, fiberglass).

The products manufactured by the company are characterized by the optimal combination of low weight and increased ring stiffness, thanks to which plastic pipes successfully resist even significant loads.

Pipes Corsis Arm
Reinforced products "Corsis Arm", included in the range of POLYPLASTIC, have a steel layer that reinforces the stiffness of the external sewer pipes

The branded line of this manufacturer is the Korsis series, which includes:

  • two-layer corrugated products;
  • spiral parts;
  • multilayer reinforced pipes.

All these elements are perfect for laying external sewer networks and other drainage systems. The company produces products with a length of 600 or 1200 mm, a diameter of 110-600 mm.

Unlike products from other companies, the Korsis components have a corrugated black outer layer and the inner surface of light blue, yellow or orange.

Place # 3 - German company Ostendorf

The famous German company Ostendorf Kunststoffe, specializing in polymer pipes and other parts, was founded by the Ostendorf brothers in 1973.

Now the company is considered a leading manufacturer of elements of such systems in the core market. Deliveries of products are made in many countries of the world, but Germany is the main consumer.

Ostendorf pipe
KG pipes (manufactured by the German company Ostendorf) have high consumer qualities. Such systems are durable, reliable, durable, easy to operate.

In 2011, the Ostendorf plant began operating in Russia. The company, where the latest technological equipment manufactured in Germany is installed, uses imported raw materials and components.

At production, strict quality control is organized, which is carried out in accordance with German and Russian standards.

Due to the high quality of products, it is in high demand by consumers, despite the relative high cost.

The KG line, designed for outdoor sewage, is made of solid polyvinyl chloride without impurities, which has increased coefficients of strength, water resistance, durability, thermal conductivity.

The convenient shape of the ends allows quick and easy installation of various systems.

Place # 4 - Politek domestic company

The Russian company Polytek, founded in 1999, is a leader in the production of polymer products used for drainage, water supply, and sewage.

Pipes Politek
The products of the domestic enterprise Polytek gained popularity due to the optimal ratio of quality and price. Even budget products have decent features.

The company's factories installed the latest foreign special equipment, which allows them to produce European-class products.

Rank # 5 - German cast iron maker Duker

Although metal products are now less common than plastic, the demand for cast iron pipes can be called stable. Several European companies produce such products, among which the following can be noted.

Founded in 1913 in Karlstadt (Franconia, Germany), the company initially produced products with bell-shaped systems.

In 1968, innovative tubeless pipes were developed that made it possible to shorten parts and also mount the remaining scraps using a combination method.

Now the company is the only manufacturer of sewer systems made of cast iron in Germany, while the plant carries out a fully completed production cycle: from casting to applying an external coating.

The company offers a wide range of different systems having different lengths, diameters and connections. All of them have excellent consumer qualities: wear resistance, resistance to aggressive substances, strength.

Duker Cast Iron Pipes
Duker cast iron pipe is durable and quality is at its best. In addition, thanks to a wide range, you can easily choose the pipes of the desired diameter

Place # 6 - French company Saint-Gobain

Large concern Saint-Gobain (France) specializes in the production of modern cast iron products. For their manufacture, De Lavaux technology (centrifugal casting) is used, followed by deep cooling of the structures.

Pam Global Cast Iron Pipe
Cast-iron pipes called Pam Global are produced at the plants of a large French concern. In the manufacture of products, the metal is coated with epoxy resin, zinc powder and acrylic varnish.

Pam Global C systems are specifically designed for soil work, as well as high-quality durable drainage systems. External sewer pipes have a diameter of 100-200 mm.

Conclusions and useful video on the topic

Below we offer a video where recommendations are given on the choice of pipes for internal and external sewage.

It is impossible to unequivocally state which type of pipe is best. When considering product options, it is important to know for what purpose they are intended and in what conditions they will be used..

Only taking into account all the individual characteristics of the site, the owner can make a choice which option is best for him to equip the sewer system.

Do you pick up pipes for arranging sewage and you still have questions after reading the article? Or have you noticed errors or inaccuracies in the material reviewed? Please write to us about this in the comments under the article.

Or maybe you have already chosen the material and installed the sewer pipeline on the site? Tell us what type of pipes you preferred and how convenient it was for you to work with them.

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Visitors Comments
  1. Nikolay

    Good afternoon! An interesting article turned out, I learned a lot for myself. I changed the sewer pipes in the country about six months ago. Completely replaced everything with fiberglass (read on the Internet!) All praise, so I decided to change just! I ordered work. The guys quickly delivered the pipes and changed everything. In general, everything turned out very high quality!

  2. Semen

    It seems to me that the time of cast-iron and asbestos-cement pipes has passed, it’s stupid not to use the result of progress in the form of plastic products now. They have too many pluses with a minimum of flaws. They are not only lighter in weight and easier to lay, but also cheaper than analogues from other materials.Good strong and durable pipes, resistant to external influences.