A case study by the American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE) explains how a little known, rarely mentioned and often misunderstood profession — plumbing engineering — is actually a critical part of any design/build team from the onset of a project.

The old adage that "anyone can do plumbing" does not hold water anymore; the plumbing engineer is highly skilled in all aspects of plumbing system design and installation, helping produce a functional, integrated, and constructible deliverable to the client.

Plumbing engineers also have hands-on abilities including building information modeling, cost estimation, project management, construction administration, commissioning, and code expertise. In fact, one of the most critical qualities the plumbing engineer brings to the design/build team is their in-depth knowledge of codes and standards related to plumbing systems. This expertise ensures that the building being constructed will comply with all of the requirements of the authority having jurisdiction and that the plumbing components and systems are safe, reliable and sustainable.

In addition, plumbing engineers have a direct impact on global issues such as combating groundwater contamination and depletion, delivering safe drinking water and sanitation, and eliminating waterborne diseases through their knowledge of water reuse systems, treatment methods, backflow prevention, piping materials, and innovative technologies.

Read the full case study here. Download ASPE's "What Is a Plumbing Engineer?" infographic here.