Can PEX run safely behind a wall?
We are restoring an older home and we are using pex. I was wondering if we could run pex up a wall or not? My plan was to remove the drywall and run it up the studs through the top plate. Once installed I was going to drywall the wall. Is it safe to do this or is there a greater chance of it leaking than copper? Thanks.
You can run PEX anywhere that you can run any other pipe. And like any other plumbing, just make sure that it isn't punctured in the drywalling process.
The beauty of PEX is that there are less fittings, and less fittings means less chance for leaks. I'd rather have PEX over copper in a concealed application.
You are required to protect pipes within 1-1/2" of the face of the plates or studs. At the plates, the nailguard must cover the plate (or plates if double top plate) and must project above the bottom plate (or below the top plate) 2". That is an International Plumbing Code requirement.
In a single family residence, the only places you can't put PEX that you could put copper are places in close proximity to sources of heat. That includes can lights, furnace flues, water heater flues, and other things that get hot. Ductwork is not a problem heat-wise. Maintain 12" clearance from PEX to all sources of heat.
In townhomes and apartments there are some issues with fire protection, but none that will affect a single family house.
It is great stuff. I've changed out most of my old copper to PEX and have never had so much as a leaky fitting.
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