L Or M Copper Pipe: Everything You Need To Know

Copper Piping
Copper Piping from jamescolincampbell.com


If you are planning any plumbing projects, it’s important to understand the different types of copper pipes available. Two common options are L and M copper pipes. In this article, we will delve into the characteristics, uses, and benefits of both types, helping you make an informed decision for your plumbing needs.

What is L Copper Pipe?

L copper pipe, also known as “thin-wall,” is commonly used for residential plumbing applications. It is lightweight, affordable, and easy to work with, making it a popular choice among DIY enthusiasts. The “L” designation refers to its thin wall thickness, typically ranging from 0.035 to 0.065 inches.

Uses and Benefits of L Copper Pipe

1. Residential Plumbing

L copper pipe is primarily used for water supply lines, particularly in residential settings. Its thin wall allows for easy installation in tight spaces, making it ideal for renovations or retrofitting projects.

2. Soldering Ease

Due to its thin wall, L copper pipe heats up quickly during soldering, reducing the risk of overheating and potential damage to surrounding fittings. This makes it easier for both professionals and DIYers to achieve strong and leak-free connections.

3. Cost-Effective

L copper pipe is generally more affordable than its thicker counterpart, M copper pipe. If you have a tight budget or need to cover a large plumbing project, L copper pipe can be a cost-effective solution without compromising on quality.

What is M Copper Pipe?

M copper pipe, also known as “medium-wall,” is commonly used for both residential and commercial plumbing applications. It has a thicker wall compared to L copper pipe, typically ranging from 0.042 to 0.065 inches. This added thickness provides greater durability and strength.

Uses and Benefits of M Copper Pipe

1. Water Distribution Systems

M copper pipe is often used for water distribution systems, including hot and cold water lines. Its thicker wall allows for higher pressure and temperature applications, making it suitable for both residential and commercial buildings.

2. Underground Applications

Due to its increased strength, M copper pipe is commonly used for underground applications, such as water mains and outdoor irrigation systems. It can withstand external pressures and potential damage better than L copper pipe.

3. Longevity and Durability

M copper pipe is known for its longevity and durability. It is less prone to damage from freezing, bending, or impact, making it a reliable choice for long-term plumbing installations.


When it comes to choosing between L or M copper pipe, consider the specific requirements of your plumbing project. If you are working on a residential renovation or have a limited budget, L copper pipe may be the ideal choice. On the other hand, if you require higher pressure applications or need to install plumbing systems underground, M copper pipe provides the necessary strength and durability. Always consult with a professional plumber to ensure you make an informed decision based on your specific needs.