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Buy the Right PVC Pipe: Schedule 40 and Schedule 80 PVC

Schedule 80 PVC vs Schedule 40 PVC Schedule 40 vs Schedule 80 PVC

If you've been shopping around for PVC you may have heard the term “schedule”. Despite its deceiving title, schedule doesn't have anything to do with time. A PVC pipe’s schedule has to do with the thickness of its walls. Maybe you've seen that schedule 80 pipe is slightly more costly than schedule 40.

Though the outside diameter of a schedule 80 pipe and a schedule 40 pipe are the same, 80 pipe has thicker walls. This standard of measuring pipe came from a need to have a universal system for referring to PVC. Since different wall thicknesses are beneficial in different situations, the ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) came up with the schedule 40 and 80 system for classifying the two common types.

The main differences between Schedule 40 (Sch 40) and Schedule 80 (Sch 80) are:

  • • Water Pressure Rating
  • • Sizing & Diameter (Wall Thickness)
  • • Color
  • • Application & Use

Purchase the Right Piping

CIS offers schedule 40 and schedule 80 PVC piping as well as fittings and other accessories at extremely competitive prices.

Get A Competitive Quote on Sch 40 / Sch 80 Pipe or Fittings Today!

Dimensions and Pressure Ratings

Below are some downloadable reference sheets that give you more information about the different dimensions and pressure ratings for Schedule 40 PVC and Schedule 80 PVC:

pdfSchedule 40 PVC Pipe Dimensions (White)

pdfSchedule 80 PVC Pipe Dimensions (White)

Water Pressure for Sch 40 vs Sch 80

Both schedule 40 and 80 PVC are used widely around the world. Each one has its benefits in different applications. Schedule 40 pipe has thinner walls, so it is best for applications involving relatively low water pressure.

Schedule 80 pipe has thicker walls and is able to withstand higher PSI (pounds per square inch). This makes it ideal for industrial and chemical applications. To give you an idea of the size difference, 1” schedule 40 PVC pipe has a .133” minimum wall and 450 PSI, while schedule 80 has a .179” minimum wall and 630 PSI.

Sizing & Diameter

As mentioned earlier, both schedule 80 and schedule 40 PVC pipe have the exact same outside diameter. This is possible because schedule 80’s extra wall thickness is on the inside of the pipe. This means schedule 80 pipe will have a slightly more restricted flow – even though it may be the same pipe diameter as an equivalent schedule 40 pipe. This means schedule 40 and 80 pipe do fit together and can be used together if necessary.

The only thing to be careful of is that the lower pressure handling schedule 40 parts meet the pressure requirements of your application. Your pipe line is only as strong as your weakest part or joint, so even one schedule 40 part used in a higher pressure schedule 80 line can cause severe damage.

Schedule 40 and Schedule 80 Color

Generally, schedule 40 pipe is white in color, while schedule 80 is often gray to distinguish it from 40. PVC is available in many colors though, so be sure to check labels when purchasing.

Which Schedule PVC do I Need?

So what schedule PVC do you need? If you plan to take on a home repair or irrigation project, schedule 40 PVC is probably the way to go. Even schedule 40 PVC is capable of handling impressive pressure, and it is likely more than adequate for any home application.

You’ll also save yourself a little money sticking with schedule 40, especially if you plan on using large diameter parts. If your job will be industrial or chemical in nature, you probably want to use schedule 80. These are applications that will likely cause higher pressure and stress on the material, so thicker walls are imperative.

CIS specializes in the following types of Schedule 40 & Schedule 80 products: sch 40 piping, sch 80 piping, sch 40 fittings, sch 80 fittings and more. You can also view our entire line of pvc fittings and pvc piping.

Have other questions? Leave a comment....

6 thoughts on “Buy the Right PVC Pipe: Schedule 40 and Schedule 80 PVC”

  • Dave McGuire

    I am going to replace some broken 4 in. clay tiles that connect to my downspouts. These are buried under my front yard and I wonder which PVC (schedule 40 or 80?) would be better taking into account the freezing temperatures they will be subjected to. They will be patched into the existing clay tiles that are still OK.
    Thanks in advance for any suggestions you can make.

    • admin

      Hey Dave,

      I would only choose schedule 80 over schedule 40 PVC if you expect the pressure or force exerted on the pipe to be significant. Schedule 40 PVC pipe generally does fine buried underground, and I think should work fine for you. Plus, it’s cheaper!

      Thanks for your question, hope that helps.

  • Shakeel

    Does Schedule80 fittings also comes in “millimeters” besides “inches”. I would like to use it with ISO4422 pipes.


    • admin

      Hello Shakeel,

      We do not sell any schedule 80 fittings this way, but it might be something you can find outside of the US. Thanks for the question, good luck!

  • Nicholas Pavicic
    Nicholas Pavicic June 5, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    When must I use schedule 40 for electrical and when must I use schedule 80 for electrical.
    I don’t see this in the NEC.

    • admin

      The pipe we supply is for pressure use, so I’m not very familiar with conduit. I did some searching and wasn’t able to find a definitive code requirement for schedule 40 vs 80. That’s not to say there isn’t something in there about it. From what I’ve found it looks like for most residential style electrical work 40 is fine. Sorry I’m not of more help, but I’ll keep an eye out for an answer.

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