The History of Plumbing
Many individuals cannot comprehend the complexity of the plumbing system we have today, therefore, many take them for granted. When you think about it, we have had indoor plumbing for a relatively short amount of time. When you are trying to unblock that nasty blockage or you are cursing the pipe that has been frozen, think about the convenience given to us by modern day plumbing and think about the path we’ve taken to get to this point.
Sewers & Aqueducts.
The plumbing system we see today did not built itself overnight. Going back into history, we can see that all ancient cultures have used some sort of plumbing system. The Indian, Central American, Chinese, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean civilizations had their own systems for providing fresh water for their people, and for removing the waste from more populated areas. The most advanced civilization was that of Ancient Rome and we can see that they had built enormous aqueducts in order to bring water into the city, and furthermore, they were utilising a sewer system underground to carry the water out.
After the collapse of the Roman Empire in the 5th century, progress and the history of plumbing advancement they had made were forgotten and Europe went back to using chamber pots and outhouses for more than a thousand years. A lot of diseases like Cholera and Typhoid were spread across the continent due to the bad sanitation and dirty water, and thus the living standards were significantly reduced, not to mention the mass deaths and reduction of the population.
After many years, the plumbing technologies came back and brought the Western World to an enlightened and cleaner era. England and in particular London were the first to try the new technologies for fresh water coming to the city during the 17th century. The United States were integrating their own plumbing systems with the years passing and it was in 1833 that the White House had installed running on its first floor.
However, in the 1800’s and 1900’s we see that there were many people who were still using wells or rain barrels to provide themselves with water while for the people living in larger cities, there were public fountains and water trucks. In the 20th century however, sewage removal and convenient water access became a necessity. Thomas Crapper designed the first functional model of a toilet at the end of the 19th century despite the numerous attempts throughout the past years.
We can safely say that nearly all homes in Australia have indoor plumbing and running water. It is safe to say we have our current plumbing system due to the history of plumbing and individuals continuously improving its features. There are a lot of developments still continuing that will improve our plumbing systems. The material used in building pipes has also evolved during the years, using plastics rather than copper or lead. There are even more efficient taps and shower heads designed by engineers which will help us in reducing our water usage and also reducing pressure on our plumbing systems.
During the next decade, in terms of innovations we will see more smarter technologies which will integrate your plumbing systems into your homes better in order to increase efficiency and still fulfill all of your water-supplying needs.
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