All plastic pipe and fittings must meet NSF/ANSI Standard 14 requirements to demonstrate compliance with all major plumbing codes

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — All major plumbing codes are now requiring that plastic piping products comply with NSF/ANSI Standard 14: Plastics Piping System Components and Related Materials including the Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC). The International Plumbing Code, International Residential Code and National Standard Plumbing Code have required compliance with NSF/ANSI Standard 14 for many years, and now the Uniform Plumbing Code also requires NSF/ANSI 14 compliance for plastic pipe and fittings, raising the bar on quality for plastic piping products nationwide.

NSF International is an independent global organization that writes public health standards and protocols, and tests and certifies products for the water, food and consumer goods industries.

The NSF Plastics Piping standard (NSF/ANSI Standard 14) has been in place for more than 45 years and is highly recognized by code and regulatory officials, manufacturers and plumbers to verify the performance and safety of plastics piping system components and related materials. The standard contains physical, performance and quality requirements and also requires ongoing monitoring for plastic piping system components and related materials. It addresses any material used in a plastic piping system, including PVC, CPVC, PE, PEX, ABS, NP, PP, as well as brass, copper, composites, and other materials. Additionally, the standard includes criteria for PVC ingredients.

NSF/ANSI 14 also includes requirements for dezincification (corrosion of brass) and stress corrosion cracking (cracking due to mechanical stress and exposure to a corrosive environment) of brass materials used in plastic piping systems. The standard also requires that products intended for use in drinking water applications comply with NSF/ANSI Standard 61: Drinking Water System Components – Health Effects, which includes requirements for all devices, components and materials that come in contact with drinking water.

"NSF/ANSI Standard 14: Plastics Piping System Components and Related Materials has been a key component in terms of the success of the plastics industry. Meeting higher standards has provided a tremendous boost with market and regulatory acceptance," said Dick Church, Executive Director of the Plastic Pipe and Fitting Association.

NSF Standard 14 is the basis for the NSF Plastic Certification Program. The NSF Certification Mark on plastic products and materials confirms that NSF International has certified compliance with NSF/ANSI 14 requirements and has completed an audit of the manufacturing facility. All products that meet NSF/ANSI Standard 14 requirements can be found on NSF's website.

"Compliance with NSF/ANSI Standard 14 requirements indicates higher quality in the plastics industry, and now that all of the major plumbing codes are requiring higher quality products this helps to protect public health," said Jeremy Brown, Business Unit Manager of NSF International's Plastics and Plumbing Programs.

How NSF/ANSI Standard 14 Certification Works

To ensure continued compliance with the requirements of NSF Standard 14, the NSF certification process requires annual audits of the production facility that include:

  • Collection of samples for retesting at NSF laboratories to ensure continued compliance;
  • Verification that only authorized materials are used in the product;
  • Verification that quality assurance and quality control procedures are followed and that all NSF/ANSI Standard 14 requirements are met; and
  • Reviewing the product marking and product literature to ensure they are accurate with respect to the NSF-listed products.

To learn more about NSF's plumbing programs contact Ellen Van Buren at 734-827-3822 or vanburen@nsf.org or visit NSF's website. You can also email europe@nsf.org, asia@nsf.org, brasil@nsf.org and info@nsf.org.cn (China) for additional information.

Editor's note: To schedule an interview with Jeremy Brown, contact Greta Houlahan at 734-913-5723 or houlahan@nsf.org

About NSF International: NSF International is an independent organization that writes standards, tests and certifies products for the food, water and consumer goods industries to minimize adverse health effects and protect the environment (nsf.org). Founded in 1944, NSF is committed to protecting human health and safety worldwide. NSF is a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Food and Water Safety and Indoor Environment.

NSF International's Water Programs require extensive product testing and unannounced audits of production facilities to verify that water treatment products meet the design, material and performance requirements. NSF International is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

NSF led the development of the American National Standards for all materials and products that treat or come in contact with drinking water to help protect public health and the environment and minimize adverse health effects. In 1990, the U.S. EPA replaced its own drinking water product advisory program with these NSF standards. Today, all major plumbing codes require certification to NSF standards for pipes and plumbing components in commercial and residential buildings.

CONTACT: Greta Houlahan
NSF International
Phone: 734-913-5723
Email: houlahan@nsf.org