Plastic plugs are most commonly used in the testing, repairing and general maintenance of pipes, and they are key parts in these procedures. They are sometimes referred to as plastic cap plugs or pipe test plugs. Their purpose is to clear out pipes, which makes it easier to find a problem in the pipe, thus making pipe repairs simpler.
There are three main types of pipe plugs. Inflatable pipe plugs are the easiest to use, while mechanical pipe plugs are the best choice when airflow is blocked in the pipe. Custom plastic plugs can be acquired when standard sizes won't fit.
Inflatable plastic plugs function by inflating with air once they are inside a pipe. This seals the pipe off, making it easier to test, repair or otherwise maintain it. Inflatable plastic plugs are very easy to install and use. Most commonly used in water or sewer pipes, you can find inflatable plastic plugs that are designed to work in storm water systems, spill barriers, oil pipes, gas pipes and more. Some high-end inflatable plastic cap plugs can withstand forces up to 5,000 pounds per square inch.
Mechanical pipe plugs are most commonly used when dealing with concrete or clay pipes. They are well suited to long-term use, and are very cost-effective. They function by hand-cranking them until they are perfectly lodged in the pipe. It's important to choose a plastic plug that is designed to withstand the amount of pressure you expect from a given pipe. If you underestimate the force, you can damage your pipes or at the very least render your plastic plugs useless.
Custom pipe plugs can be manufactured from all sorts of different materials. Steel, copper, brass, aluminum, rubber and plastic are just a few of the options. Beyond the material, it's important to specify the size of the plastic plugs needed as well as the shape, whether square, hexagonal or something different. It's also important to take into account the durability and corrosion resistance of a plastic cap plug.