Plumbing has a long history but it was the romans who really started to use plumbing in the structures and squares of Rome as a way of delivering clean water and removing waste water.
The word "plumber" originates in Roman times. The Romans used the latin word for lead, this word was "plumbum". Lead is abbreviated to "Pb" on the periodic table of the elements. Roman roofs used lead in gutters and drain pipes. They used lead for pipework and also for making baths and roof seals. Some roofs were done entirely in lead. Due to its malleability lead was great for making pipes and roof seals. A person with expertise in working with lead was first known as a Plumbarius which was later shortened to plumber. These days much more is understood about lead and its impact on health and so is not used by modern day plumbers although, there is still a lot of old lead pipework delivering drinking water in cities such as Dublin and Cork. Modern plumbers mostly use copper, and some have said, plumbers should be called "coppers", but this mantle is already taken by the police.
Plumbers in the 21st century have to repair and work with different materials and more complex systems than their ancient Roman counterparts. The principles are the same, controlled delivery of water from a reservoir, above or below ground, to a point where people can use it for drinking and washing. Also the removal or treatment of the now waste water to a point where it is not a breeding ground for water born infections, parasites and diseases to accumulate. Modern water treatment and waste water treatment facilities raise hygiene levels and allow large cities to thrive, a lack of these amenities would allow disease to flourish in a densely populated area.
Plumbers must undertake all manner of plumbing repairs, these are some of the items and fixtures aswell as services and materials that modern plumbers must be familiar with: leaks, showers, taps, toilets, cisterns, baths, sinks, bursts, wastes, drains, ballcocks,jacuzzi, electric showers, pumps, boilers, cylinders, pipes, pipework, water filters, water purifiers, reverse osmosis units, underfloor heating , biomass, UV sterilizers,heatpumps, wood pellet boilers, solar panels, solar heating ,renewable energy,plumbing bylaws, gas fitting,gas valves, gas boilers, oil boilers, oil burners, industrial plumbing, emergency plumbing, power showers, bath taps, basin taps, wash hand basins, soak tubs, wells, well pumps, booster pumps, shower pumps, waste pumps, saniflo, septic tanks, pumped systems, mains water supplies , hot water systems, copper pipes, cross linked polyethylene, sewers, wet rooms,drains unblocked,domestic plumbing,commercial plumbing, Emergency situations, emergencies, plumber, plumbers, plumbing,24 HOUR emergency callouts, silicone, shower trays, shower doors, thermostats, lead, asbestos, cast iron, flush valves etc