PVC pipe fittings chart & connector types

When you’re working with them, pipes can be easily connected. It is done with the help of fittings which will aid you in your plumbing work. PVC fittings can have different types and purposes, such as draining water. 

A detachable piece of pipe intended for connecting 2 pipes is called a fitting. Most of the time, these objects are used for mechanical and plumbing work. 

box of pvc fittings

The PVC fittings have their own system for standard sizing. That means you will find all the parts of the same size to be compatible with each other. For example, all 1″ fittings can perfectly fit on a 1″ pipe, making it easier to work with. 

However, the outer diameter will be greater than the pipe’s size. That’s why the fitting also needs a larger fitting than the size. If this confuses you and you find it complicated, don’t worry! Below, we will show you everything you need to know about them.

Also called connectors, they differ from one manufacturer to another. They can be made of various materials and have unique applications and uses. Below, we will show you the various connector types and a PVC pipe fittings chart to help you better.

What is a PVC pipe coupling?

PVC couplings are small pieces that connect one part to another permanently. They are simple and cheap, and they can connect 2 pipes. They can also connect one pipe to a fitting. They can vary in shape and size, as some will allow you to connect small pipes to large ones. 

There are several types of couplings which we will explain below.

  • Full couplings – They are used for small bore pipes. Both ends are of a threaded connection, but they can also be socket ends types. 
  • Half couplings – They got their name from being half-sized. A socket or thread end can be found on only one side, and they are used for branching from a large bore pipe to a vessel. 
  • Reducing couplings – These couplings have the same connection method but are sized differently. Usually, reducing couplings are used to connect pipes of different parameters. 
  • Compression couplings – These special fittings are made for connecting existing PVC. Compression couplings prevent leakage by using rubber seals or glue on both sides.
  • Slip couplings – Repair couplings allow up to 2 inches of pipe to be removed and repaired. These are the most efficient in repairing leaks, as they are made without any internal stop. 

Names of fittings

We have you covered if you are curious about all the types of fittings out there. Below we will present all of them in a detailed explanation. If you want to find more about them, visit their respective product page.


These are used for connecting 2 different parts. Slip or threaded sockets will allow connection between them. Either male-threaded or female-threaded, the adapter fittings are also called reducing couplings. 

They can be of different types. Expansion adapters have flexible parts intended to absorb the dilation of the connected pipes. Mechanical joints connect pipes to different materials, while bell adapters have the same purpose but use a stainless steel ring

Best adapter – Nibco C4804 2 HXMIPT Male Adapter

This adapter is used for various systems, such as drain or waste ones. Nibco created this product with a hub connection on one side and a male threaded connection on the other. 

It can connect different types of pipes, regardless of their diameter or material. It is made of PVC and intended for residential and commercial sanitary systems. They are not ideal in high-pressure pipes, but the material can resist corrosion and chemicals. 


elbow fitting

These connectors are facilitating a change of direction. They are installed at a 45 or 90-degree angle between 2 pipes. When they differ in size, elbow connectors can also be called reducers. Tents and boxes will use side elbows, which are 3-ended elbows. Elbow connectors are threaded, but they can also be socketed. 

pvc elbow fitting

Best elbow – letsFix PVC Elbow

This manufacturer is known as a top professional PVC pipes and ‘manufacturer. They also offer 3-way, 4-way, and 5-way elbow fittings made of PVC. All US standards are met with high-quality procedures.

These products are white and won’t gradually turn yellow with time. It is because of a special UV resistance formula that does wonders. Perfect for corner and center connections, it has a wide application. 

We needed a 4-way elbow for plumbing work, and our client and we were satisfied with the results. The letsFix company delivers the promises and meets the highest standards. 


These are known as the most simple and cheap PVC pipe fittings. Their purpose is to connect 2 pieces permanently, and they are of different types. Standard couplings have an internal ridge that will prevent a deep insertion of a pipe. 

Slip couplings have no such ridge and require increased attention and precision. Measurements must be made at the final location to meet the limit. These are also called repair couplings. 

Best coupling – Rainbow Dream 3/4 Inch PVC Coupling

These couplings are used to connect 2 pipes in a straight line. They are made of PVC, offering superior corrosion resistance. Rainbow Dream made them lightweight and resistant to high impacts without breaking. Easy to install and maintain, they are also non-toxic to the environment.

Perfectly fit for water pressure systems, such as pools or irrigation systems. They have high impact strength and have a maximum temperature limit of 140 degrees Fahrenheit.


The union fitting is similar to the coupling one. It still connects 2 pipes, but the difference is that union fittings are not permanent. They can be easily disconnected multiple times, whenever needed. It’s made out of 3 parts, and the nut seals the male and female ends. It can also be easily removed for maintenance and deconstruction. 

Rotary units are also made of PVC, allowing the mechanical rotation of one connected part. These units are very durable, and they can easily prevent leakage. 

Best union fitting – NDS WU-1500-S, 1-1/2-Inch Slip Union

These fittings are ideal for high-pressure applications. You will use these for indoor plumbing or outdoor irrigation systems, as they perform well at high pressure. You can also use it for pools or hot tubs.

They require little maintenance and are easier to use than coupling or elbow fittings. If you use this union PVC fitting, water will be safe to drink as high safety standards are ensured. 


A short stub of pipe will also be named a nipple. It is used to connect 2 female fittings of a system, and they are made with a schedule 80 PVC. It is done because they need a tighter fit but can also be compatible with schedule 40 PVC.

Best nipple – FangKingNo 10pcs 0.75 Inch PVC Nipple Male to Male

These nipple fittings made by FangKingNo are made for connecting 2 threaded pipes. They are PVC but have Teflon tape at the ends to prevent leakage. Because they are made from PVC, they weigh less than ones created from metal. 

At the same time, they offer high strength and superior corrosion resistance. They can be used underground for various pipes but also rainwater collection systems. It is not recommended with drinking water or hot water. 


Reducers are used to reduce the size of 2 connecting components. They can easily change the size and diameter and come in 2 different types. 

The concentric reducer will connect 2 pipes on the same axis, and it also looks like a cone. An eccentric reducer will connect 2 pipes with different parameters. The shape looks like bells that have offset center lines. 

Best reducer – Supply Giant 6I52 Flexible PVC

Created with stainless steel clamps, this flexible PVC-reducing fitting is the best one you can find for the value. Their flexible connectors ensure leak-proof pipe sealing on any type of material. 

It can connect same or different sizes quickly and easily. Stainless steel clamps ensure a safe and secure connection. However, this material is also corrosion-resistant and highly durable, lasting long. 


This PVC fitting is shaped in the form of the letter “T.” There are 3 ends, 2 of which are in a straight line. The other is situated on the site at a 90-degree angle. 

It is used to separate pipes that have to be split at a 90-degree angle but can also connect 2 of them into a single mainline. Most tee fittings will have slip socket ends which are more durable than cross fittings. Different sizes are available, and there is plenty to choose from. 

Best tee – NIBCO – F01840D C401-015 11/2 TEE

These tee fittings by Nibco are made of PVC and feature slip connections. It is T-shaped, and 3 openings will connect 3 pipes, 2 on the main run and one at a 90-degree angle in the middle. They have female slip openings intended for male unthreaded pipes

This company used schedule 40 PVC when they manufactured this fitting. That’s why it is highly resistant and weighs less than similar models made from metal. It is mostly used for cold water distribution systems, such as potable and chilled water applications. 

Caps and plugs

The caps are designed for a single reason: to stop the flow. They are most commonly used on an end of a pipeline with an open ending that doesn’t need to be connected to another pipe. 

They do a good job of stopping a pipeline that can be expanded later or offering easy system access when necessary. They also have an aesthetic purpose, which can be used to cover pipes in finished building projects. 

Plugs are like caps but stop the flow in a fitting instead of a pipe. In this case, a fitting is still necessary, and the plug is placed inside it. 

Best cap – NIBCO C447-007 3/4 CAP

Nibco never fails to provide the best products in the plumbing market, and they developed this cap is a very good choice. They’re made of high-quality material, and this cap is strong and durable. 

It will stop the flow at the end of your pipes and last a long time. It features a white shade, and the UV protection coating will prevent it from turning yellow over time. You can also use it for aesthetic purposes, and your finished projects look great. 

Take a look at the pipe fittings chart below. It will help you with quick conversions, so you won’t have to calculate the measurements you get every single time manually. This way, you can also find out what you need depending on the size of your PVC. 

PVC pipe fittings chart

PVC SizeActual Diameter
Schedule 40, Schedule 80, Furniture Grade
Schedule 40, Schedule 80, Furniture Grade
Schedule 40, Schedule 80, Furniture Grade
Schedule 40, Schedule 80, Furniture Grade
Schedule 40, Schedule 80, Furniture Grade
Schedule 40, Schedule 80, Furniture Grade
Schedule 40, Schedule 80
Schedule 40, Schedule 80
Schedule 40, Schedule 80
Schedule 40, Schedule 80
Schedule 40, Schedule 80
Schedule 40, Schedule 80
Schedule 40, Schedule 80
Schedule 40, Schedule 80

To find the right fitting for your plumbing needs, you must figure out what size pipes you need for your project. Determining that size can be confusing for some, but we are here to help you with a step-by-step guide.

pvc fittings on the ground

When they hear about the size, most people think about the outer diameter. However, the size determines the nominal diameter. When we look at fittings, their inside diameters must be large enough to go over the diameter. 

To measure the outside diameter, use the following steps. You can also look at the chart presented above, where you will find the PVC pipe fittings measurements.

How to find the right PVC pipe fitting

  1. Wrap a string around the pipe you are trying to measure.

  2. Mark the point with a marker where the string touches together.

  3. Find the length between the tip of the string and the mark you’ve made. Use a ruler to get exact measurements. The result is called the circumference.

  4. Divide the circumference by 3.14159

    With the result, you can choose the right PVC fitting for your plumbing needs. Look again at the different types and determine which is ideal for your project. 


What size PVC pipe fits inside each other?

A 1-1/2″ Thinwall will easily accept a 1-1/4″ PVC pipe. It maintains the same diameter but has a larger opening inside. This opening is enough to accept other PVC components inside of it. 

What size fitting do I need for a 1-inch PVC pipe?

A 1-inch PVC will be 1.029 inches inside diameter and 1.315 inches outside diameter. Fittings are specially designed for this pattern, and a 1″ fitting will be able to accept the 1-inch PVC pipe. 

What’s the difference between a repair coupling and a coupling?

The repair couplings are considered the most efficient way to repair leaks or damaged portions. A coupling made of PVC is a fitting that allows a small part of the pipe to be removed and repaired occasionally. 

How do you connect two different size PVC pipes?

PVC cement can be used to glue a coupler to the larger pipe. Then, the glue will be applied to the inside of the opening and the outside of the smaller ones. For the last step, the smaller one is slid into the opening.