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Copper is a chemical element with the symbol Cu (from Latin: cuprum) and atomic number 29. It is a soft, malleable, and ductile metal with very high thermal and electrical conductivity. A freshly exposed surface of pure copper has a pinkish-orange color. Copper is used as a conductor of heat and electricity, as a building material, and as a constituent of various metal alloys, such as sterling silver used in jewelry, cupronickel used to make marine hardware and coins, and constantan used in strain gauges and thermocouples for temperature measurement.
Copper is one of the few metals that can occur in nature in a directly usable metallic form (native metals). This led to very early human use in several regions, from c. 8000 BC. Thousands of years later, it was the first metal to be smelted from sulfide ores, c. 5000 BC; the first metal to be cast into a shape in a mold, c. 4000 BC; and the first metal to be purposely alloyed with another metal, tin, to create bronze, c. 3500 BC.In the Roman era, copper was mined principally on Cyprus, the origin of the name of the metal, from aes сyprium (metal of Cyprus), later corrupted to сuprum (Latin). Coper (Old English) and copper were derived from this, the later spelling first used around 1530.Commonly encountered compounds are copper(II) salts, which often impart blue or green colors to such minerals as azurite, malachite, and turquoise, and have been used widely and historically as pigments.
Copper used in buildings, usually for roofing, oxidizes to form a green verdigris (or patina). Copper is sometimes used in decorative art, both in its elemental metal form and in compounds as pigments. Copper compounds are used as bacteriostatic agents, fungicides, and wood preservatives.
Copper is essential to all living organisms as a trace dietary mineral because it is a key constituent of the respiratory enzyme complex cytochrome c oxidase. In molluscs and crustaceans, copper is a constituent of the blood pigment hemocyanin, replaced by the iron-complexed hemoglobin in fish and other vertebrates. In humans, copper is found mainly in the liver, muscle, and bone. The adult body contains between 1.4 and 2.1 mg of copper per kilogram of body weight.

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  1. P

    Gas pipe under loft insulation.

    The copper gas pipe to my boiler in the loft runs between joists and sits on the plasterboard. I understand that it should not be covered by insulation. Why? Is it satisfactory to create a dome over the pipe with upside down guttering and then put fibreglass insulation over the top please?
  2. J

    Why hot water copper pipe is 22mm and cold is 15mm?

    Hi All, I have this silly question. Water pressure for hot water is a bit low while cold water has a decent pressure. Why do they put 22mm copper pipes for hot water? It seems detrimental for already low pressure. Best regards
  3. M

    URGENT My t valve seems to be too thick for my shark bite cylinder

    I cannot get my shark bite fitting to fit over the white supposed to be a half inch copper T valve is it because it’s corroded just seem to be too thk
  4. D

    Changing from Plastic to Copper at Shower Valve

    Hopefully a simple question for someone in the know, but why do some plumbers/installers run everything in plastic pushfit (Hep2O or JG) and then swap over to copper for the last bit before a shower etc? I see this being done on installations where there is a pushfit adaptor available for the...
  5. Antony_0

    20mm MDPE to 25MDPE (and 22mm Copper)

    Hi all, we're doing some renovation work to our property and we wanted to install a sauna house (includes shower) in the garden, irrigation system and outside tap. I've ran a 25mm MDPE from the inside utility room where the main stopcock comes into the house. I originally thought that it was a...
  6. B

    Placement of a copper Cylinder for best effect

    I Cannot installa unvented cyclinder because my waterflow rate is too low. I am therefore thinking of using the old attic tank feeding a cylinder system. My query is, Which is the better of two cylinder placements. Water fed to a cylinder in the loft with hot water fed from top of cylinder...
  7. B

    Copper connection on backflow

    Hi, trying to remove copper pipe from sprinkler back flow. Used blow torch to soften solder. Did not melt what ever they used on connection. What could they have used instead of solder ? Thank You . BH
  8. M

    How to join copper drain pipe

    I wish to join a 3" copper drain pipe that runs from roof vent to sewer. Any secret fitting that would make this easy without solder?
  9. N

    Scrap Copper (20 Characters!)

    Over the years I have collected pipes and a few Hot Water Cylinders from my DIY efforts. Having now accumulated enough to become a space problem I really should get rid. Is pipe thats been painted going to be of interest to the scrap metal merchants? Should I be removing the Immersion Heaters...
  10. T

    Copper pipe in wall what is it?

    Help please:) We are in the process of taking down a stud wall between our kitchen and dining room. As we are taking the plastebaord down we have come across a copper pipe (literally situated in the middle of the wall..approx 16mm) All the downstairs radiators are on show and run up the corner...
  11. R

    MDPE to copper lever valve

    I would like to fit a full bore quarter turn valve that takes 25mm MDPE on the inlet and 22mm copper on the other side. I can't seem to find one, but surely they exist - has anyone come across one? I need to replace a seized stopcock on a 25mm blue MDPE supply pipe to 22mm copper internal...
  12. M

    URGENT 22mm copper pipe of 28mm copper pipe, what shall I run?

    Hi all. I'm new to this forum. Please go easy on me👷🏼 I'm currently renovating my house and my house currently runs from old lead pipes then soldered in to 15mm copper pipe. I want to replace the whole piping in the house from to bottom. My question is shall I run 22mm copper pipe then...
  13. T

    Reoccurring copper pipe pinhole leaks

    Hello folks, I am hoping some of you may be able to provide you perspective on what is looks like could be a serious problem. I am a complete novice so please bear with me... Full house renovation with all new pipe work, unvented megaflo cylinder, secondary return, pump, water softer etc. 1...
  14. T

    8mm copper to 15mm plastic connection

    I have recently moved house and would like to move a radiator from a side wall, to one below the window as is more pleasing to the eye. I understand why it was not placed under the window, as my house is old and has concrete flooring so would be difficult when it comes to the pipework...
  15. A

    Best way of joining 1.25 copper to 28mm copper

    I have recently moved into a new home (old house) where the pipe from the boiler to the cylinder (indirect vented) is 1.25 inches. I need to change the cylinder and was wondering how best to join 1.25mm copper to 28mm copper for the new tank. Any advice would be gratefully received
  16. S

    How to fix shower bar with only 10mm exposed 15mm copper pipes?

    Hi Guys, Seeking advice. I have a Triton Combi HP (8000/9000) mixer shower, which is giving thermostatic and cross flow issues. I can confirm cold back flowing into hot, because the hot feed is ice cold. I have 3 of these identical showers, and the hots are much warmer than the colds on the...
  17. L

    Capping off two copper pipes

    Hello.. Need to cap off two copper pipes...the problem is getting access to a straight piece of copper to do a successful cap, see pictures. I always prefer to solder. The floor is reinforced concrete and I would rather not get the power chisel out.. The pipes coming out of the floor are...
  18. B

    Does 15mm copper have to reach right to the back of the fitting when soldering?

    I want to solder a 15mm end-feed elbow onto a straight run of pipe to join it up to a radiator. I've cut the existing pipe run just a fraction too short to come straight up to hit the radiator valve, but I'm hoping it could still work... How important is it that the copper pipe is pushed all...
  19. D

    Are support sleeves necessary for copper pipe compression fittings

    Hi, This must have been discussed in the past but with a quick search I couldn't find the answer I wanted. What is the view of using support sleeves inside copper pipes for compression joints. (The pipes in question are 28 mm and 35 mm diameter so I'd expect them to be pretty strong anyway.)...
  20. J

    how to seal a weaping copper joint

    So discovered a leak or weeping joint. Two elbows are attached by a 5cm copper pipe which has the blue residue on it. Also there is an imperceitble leak. The plumber will call out sometime next week so I need a temporary fix. Whats the best solution? Sealing putty Self amalgam tape Stixall or...