What to Look for in Plastic Agricultural Piping

For farm owners, the choice of irrigation piping is vitally important. Choose the correct piping and you’ll ensure a long shelf-life for your irrigation system, lower labour costs due to little to no need to make repairs and lower costs overall for the lifetime of the system. Here we consider each of the attributes you should consider when selecting agricultural piping.

Durability

First and foremost, you obviously want to ensure that the piping you choose is going to be able to weather the storm, literally. It has to be able to withstand harsh sunlight, potentially large temperature fluctuations and any other tough conditions in which it may be used. Some piping is created without stringent quality control testing, or is only tested at the very end of the production line, with the result that imperfections are missed.

Proper marking

Proper marking ensures that piping is 100% traceable, so you know where it’s come from and you know who to contact if it doesn’t perform up to your standards. It’s also worth noting that some pipe manufacturers offer to use laser etching to put your company or farm name on the piping, along with any specific instructions you feel need to be communicated to the people installing it.

UV resistance

Some piping goes the extra mile in resisting damage from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Look for piping that has been treated with a reflective coating to ensure that it can stand up to South Africa’s harsh sun.

Smooth interior

Having piping that is perfectly smooth inside as well as out helps ensure optimal flow within an irrigation system. It also means that the piping will be more resistant to the build-up of algae and dirt blockages, with fewer small crags and imperfections for particles of matter to attach themselves to.

Well packaged

The last thing you want is for the piping you purchase to be haphazardly bundled into the back of a bakkie, potentially making it full of kinks and sharp bends. Ensure that all your piping comes properly coiled. This is the neatest way to package and transport piping, and it helps protect the piping from damage.

Availability in custom lengths

Some piping manufacturers sell piping only in coils of certain lengths, forcing you to purchase more than you really need. Instead choose a plastic piping manufacturer that allows you to specify the exact length of piping you need.

Internal and external fits

Depending on the specifics of your irrigation system, you may use external or internal fittings, or both. It’s best practice to choose a pipe that will easily fit into both. This may save you trouble later on.