Technical Blog

Welcome to John’s Blog. Answers to frequently asked questions are periodically posted here. The objective is to share information about PVC pipe with readers as well as with utilities, design engineers and pipe installers. The blog provides the latest information on PVC pipe design, installation, and application for water and wastewater infrastructure projects.

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John Houle: Senior Technical Consultant, PVC Pipe Industry

John Houle holds a Master’s Degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Missouri and an MBA from the University of Oregon. He has more than 25 years of experience in the plastic pipe industry in applications engineering, market development, forensic analysis, technical writing, and standards development.

External Load Design Calculator for PVC Pipe

Posted By John Houle on May 11, 2020

Modified Iowa EquationThe PVC Pipe Association has released an online version of its external load design program for calculating earth and live loads for PVC pipe. It follows the method outlined in the 5th edition of the Handbook of PVC Pipe Design and Construction.

Users can input project conditions such as pipe size, pipe stiffness, depth of burial and live load type as well as soils-related options such as unit weight of soil and E' for embedment. Based on input variables, the calculator will provide theoretical loads (in psi) and pipe deflection expressed as a percentage of diameter.

Designers of buried PVC pipe will find that this calculator streamlines the design process and provides the ability to quickly determine a pipe's deflection and/or to perform a sensitivity analysis for various installation conditions.

Click here for calculator.