What are Different Types of Piping and Plumbing Fittings?

Piping and plumbing fittings are parts that connect the pipes and aid in changing the direction of the flow or the pipe size or connecting different components for instance elbow fitting, tee fitting, eccentric reducer, and compression fitting, etc. They are used in order to control the direction and quantity of the liquid or fluid in piping and plumbing systems without leakage. These fittings include Elbow, Tee, Cross, Reducer, Union, Coupling, Nipple, Plug & Cap, Adapters, Flanges, and Valve.

Pipe Elbow Fitting:

The pipe elbow fitting is one of the most commonly used fittings for the purpose of changing the pipe direction. It is a sharp bent pipe which is used for several purposes in industrial applications such as flow lines to control the flow and direction of liquids, chemicals, gases, and fluids in different processes. They are available in different materials including copper, rubber, plastic, stainless steel, aluminum, and iron. Pipe Elbow is installed between two long pipes for changing the direction of the flow of liquid or fluid. These are commonly available in two types; i-e 90 degrees and 45 degrees.

Reducing Elbow Fitting:

Reducing elbow fitting is a bent pipe having different diameters at both ends. It is usually used to join two pipes of different sizes for the purpose of changing the quantity of the flow of liquid, gas, or fluid. They are available in different materials including iron, stainless steel, rubber, copper, aluminum, and brass. Reducing elbow fittings are available in different angles bends such as 90°, 45°, 135°, and 180°, etc.

Street Elbow Fitting:

Street elbow fitting is an elbow fitting that has a female thread on one end and male thread on the other end. It is a piping and plumbing fitting that is used to connect two pipes at a different angle, one having female thread (internal thread) and the other having male thread (external thread).

Pipe Tee Fitting:

Pipe tee fitting is a fitting that has a T shape. It has two outlets at an angle of 90° each and one main connection line. It is a pipe that has adjacent outlets and used to connect pipes at 90° angle. Pipe tee fittings are used for commercial as well as industrial applications. They are available in several different sizes. They are made from materials including carbon steel, iron, aluminum, plastic, stainless steel, copper, brass, and rubber. There are different types of pipe tee fittings such as straight tee, female and male branch tee, male and female-run tee, reducing tee and wye tee.

Straight Tee Fitting:

Straight tee fitting is a T shaped pipe fitting that has two outlets at a right angle.

Male and Female Branch Tee Fitting:

Male branch tee fittings are one of the most commonly used pipe fittings. The male branch tee consists of three parts; the body, nut, and olive. It is used to join fractional pipe to female NPT (National Pipe Thread) while the female branch tee is joined to male NPT. They are available in different materials including stainless steel, aluminum, copper, nickel, iron, bronze, plastic, PVC, and rubber. They are designed in a special way that they can fit standard female threads such as BSP, BSPT, RC, G, etc.

Male and Female Run Tee Fitting:

Male run tee fittings are used to connect components in a pneumatic system and female-run tee fitting is used to connect three pipes with male thread on one or more sides. These fitting are considered easy to install and provides a safe and reliable leak-proof connection. It is used in several different applications such as chemical processing industries, oil and gas industries, food processing and power generation industries, etc.

Reducing Tee Fitting:

Reducing tee fitting is a type of fitting which is commonly used in pipe fittings. It has a T shape with two ends of the same size and one end is slightly smaller than the other two sides. It is available in different sizes and materials including aluminum, plastic, bronze, cast iron, brass, fiberglass, ceramic, rubber, or lead. Reducing tee fitting is used in various applications such as the food and beverage industry, shipbuilding, water treatment, and chemical processing units, etc.

Wye Tee and Lateral Tee Fitting:

The wye tee fitting has two branches of pipes at 45 degrees angle and both braches are symmetrical. The lateral tee fitting also has two branches but one is straight in the same direction while the other one is at a 45 degrees angle.

Cross Fitting:

Cross fitting is a pipe fitting that has four openings and it is shaped like a cross. It consists of 1 inlet and 3 outlets or vice versa.

Pipe Reducer Fitting:

Pipe reducer is a plumbing fitting. It is a pipe with a large diameter on one side that reduces to a smaller diameter at the other end. The most commonly used reducers are:

  • concentric
  • eccentric

Concentric Reducer:

Concentric reducer is also known as a conical reducer because it is shaped like a cone. The center of both ends is on the same axis resulting in bubbles.

Eccentric Reducer:

Eccentric reducer does not form bubbles because the center of both sides is on a different axis.

Union Fitting:

The union fitting is used as an alternative to flanges and couplings when the use of the latter is considered impractical. The union consists of three parts the nut, female and male threaded ends. They are easy to install and remove.


Coupling is a mechanical device that joins two shafts together for transmitting power. There are three types of couplings full coupling, half coupling, and reducing coupling. Full coupling is used for joining small pipes, the half coupling is used for branching from a container or pipe, and reducing coupling is used for joining two pipes of different sizes.

Pipe Nipple:

A pipe nipple is a small pipe fitting with a male thread either on one end or both ends. It is used for connecting two different types of fittings such as hoses, valves, and pipes. It is available in different materials brass, copper, and stainless steel.

Plug and Cap:

Plug and cap are used to seal the pipe openings during the process of repair and maintenance. They have threads; the plug has a male thread and the cap has a female thread. It is available in different materials including rubber, metal, and plastic.

Adapter Fittings:

Adapter fittings are used to connect different pipes. They have male as well as female ends and if they do not have threads they can be soldered or welded to the pipe. They are available in materials including PVC, brass, and stainless steel.

Flange Fittings:

The flanges are flat and have a round shape. It is a perfect seal for fasteners. It can be used with plumbing fittings that pass through walls and ceilings as well as for drain piping.


A valve is used to change the direction of the flow of water. There are different types of valves that are used for different purposes such as one-way flow, for managing volume or pressure, etc.

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