Are Sharkbite Fittings Legal in California

No, Sharkbite fittings are not legal in California due to the state’s drinking water law. As of January 1, 2010, the law requires that all pipes, fittings, and fixtures intended to dispense or convey drinking water must have a weighted average lead content of less than 0.25%, based on a wetted surface area calculation. For many Californians this meant that the popular Sharkbite fitting was no longer an option for their home plumbing projects.

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Why Sharkbite Fittings Are Not Legal In California

Sharkbite fittings, a popular plumbing product that is used to join pipes together without soldering or using glue, are not legal for use in California. This is due to a law that requires all drinking water-related pipes, fittings, and fixtures in the state to be lead-free. Sharkbite fittings are made from brass, which contains lead and therefore does not meet the state’s requirements. California has some of the strictest laws regarding lead in drinking water pipes and components.

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According to the Maximum Allowable Lead Content (MALC) law, any component that comes into contact with drinking water must contain no more than 0.25% lead by weight. As brass typically contains between 2% and 8% lead by weight, it is not compliant with this law and therefore cannot be used as part of any plumbing system in California. This means that while Sharkbite fittings can be used in other parts of the country, they are prohibited for use in California. Homeowners who want to make sure their plumbing systems are compliant should look for products that are labeled as “lead-free” or have been certified by IAPMO R&T Labs as compliant with the MALC law.

The Drinking Water Law Regarding Lead Content in Pipes, Fittings, and Fixtures

Under California’s drinking water law, all pipes, fittings, and fixtures used in residential or public buildings must be lead-free. This includes Sharkbite fittings, which are not approved for use in California due to the lead content found in the brass and other materials used to construct them. Lead poisoning is a serious health hazard and has been linked to numerous negative health effects such as anemia, developmental delays, behavioral problems and learning disabilities.


To conclude, it is clear that Sharkbite fittings are not legally allowed in California due to the drinking water law that requires all pipes, fittings, and fixtures installed within the state to be lead-free. This law helps ensure that all Californians have access to clean and safe drinking water. While there are other options available for plumbing projects, Sharkbite fittings are not a legal option in California.

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