PVC piping systems have been used widely for many years in industrial applications for everything from process cooling water to the transport of hazardous chemicals, due to the high corrosion resistance of PVC.

The harsh environment within chemical plants and the conveyance of chemicals places high demands on the piping systems in terms of safety, economic factors and subsequent maintenance, which PVC can meet.

Piping systems for industry are made of unplasticised PVC (PVC-U), chlorinated PVC (C-PVC), or high impact PVC (PVC-HI/PVC-M). C-PVC is particularly advantagegous due to the material's functional properties that allow high temparatures and increased resistance to corrosion from chemicals.

How resistant are PVC pipes to chemicals?

PVC pipes have an outstanding resistance to a wide range of chemicals, including strong acids and alkalis. Therefore, they are used in a wide number of process industries. The tables below provide an overview. However, always refer to the manufacturer's technical documentation for detailed information.

High resistance to:

  • Sewage effluents
  • Acids, in particular sulfuric acid
  • Alkalis, alcohols
  • Most oils, fats
  • Diesel fuel, gasoline (petrol)
  • Detergents
  • Sink cleaner
  • Bleach
  • Chlorine dioxide and most disinfectant chemicals
  • Fertilisers and phytosanitary products
  • Caustic soda
  • Many other oxidising and corrosive materials

Low resistance to high concentrations of:

  • Ketones and esters
    • Solvents (in solvent cement, paints, etc.)
  • Aromatic hydrocarbons
    • Benzene
    • Toluene
  • Chlorinated hydrocarbons
    • Paintbrush cleaners


ISO/TR 10358:2021

ISO 4433-3:1997

Fumire J. (2008). Resistance of PVC Pipes Against Disinfectants, PPXIV. Available at https://plasticpipesconference.com/site/database

Plastics Industry Pipe Association of Australia. (2013). PIPA POP201 – Resistance of plastic pipes and fittings to water and wastewater chemicals - Issue 1.1 May 2013. https://pipa.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/PIPA-POP201-Resistance-of-Plastic-Pipes-and-Fittings-to-Water-and-Wastewater-Chemicals-Issue-1.1.pdf