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Old 03-19-2011, 03:04 PM   #1
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I've been told I need all new pipes


I have had two leaks in our CPVC piping in the last two months. When my husband tries to mend the pipes they fall apart so we know we have a problem. We just had a plumber come out to fix our latest leak - my husband thought it might desinegrate too much for him to handle - and they say we should replace all our CPVC with Wirsbo from the main water valve and throughout the house. I see on one of the previouse posts that copper should be used from the main to the house - but is the Wirsbo better for all the other piping? The estimate was a lot more than I expected - would copper be cheaper?

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Old 03-19-2011, 03:32 PM   #2
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I've been told I need all new pipes


Seen the metals market of late?

Copper is getting high again.

Awhile back I was talking with a plumbing contractor and he was saying that the aqua pex and copper where about the same in price, the difference for him was time, copper took longer to put in over the aqua pex and its fittings.

If the cpvc is breaking down then yes it is a matter of time before more is getting fixed...
If what is taking out the cpvc starts to do the same to the copper then it is all over again on the replacement.

I think that the Aqua Pex would stand up better and longer..

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Old 03-19-2011, 03:58 PM   #3
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I've been told I need all new pipes


Jmonno,

Re-plumbing your house using PEX should cost a lot less than re-plumbing using copper. Not only is PEX tubing cheaper than copper pipes but the labor for installing PEX is a “LOT” less since PEX can just be bent for turns without having to solder copper elbows. Find a plumbing contractor who will not install any elbows in the PEX runs. Ideally the PEX tubing will run from the distribution manifold all the way to the fixtures without any joints in-between. No joints improves water flow, has less noise and has no possibility of leaks. I read that some states require that all PEX joints be accessible which eliminates elbow joints in double walls, etc.

Be sure all of the PEX is enclosed so none will be exposed to direct or indirect sunlight. UV from sunlight degrades PEX tubing. In this regard, be sure to keep the access door to your distribution manifold closed at all times. Also be sure that the contractor uses PEX approved supports for ALL hangers, strapping and going through holes. Be sure the contractor will not use metal straps to hold the PEX along side walls or just run the PEX through bare holes in wall studs, etc. PEX tubing has a high rate of expansion/contraction and needs to rub against PEX approved supports. Also be sure that all of the PEX is enclosed to be rat proof if you can have rat/mice problems. There have been cases where rats/mice have chewed on PEX tubing and caused leaks. Using rat poison is not a cure since poisoned rats want water and are even more inclined to chew on PEX lines to get it.

I personally like the Wisbo/Uponor PEX system the best and have installed it in my own home.

HRG
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Old 03-19-2011, 04:17 PM   #4
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I've been told I need all new pipes


I use Pex in one of my houses works great and alot cheaper then copper..
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Old 03-19-2011, 04:21 PM   #5
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I've been told I need all new pipes


Thank you for your quick replies - I have never heard of PEX and these guys that came out made it sound like it is too good to be true, thanks for your expertise. I guess now all I need to do is get several estimates -
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Old 03-19-2011, 04:25 PM   #6
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I've been told I need all new pipes


Quote:
Originally Posted by jmonno View Post
Thank you for your quick replies - I have never heard of PEX and these guys that came out made it sound like it is too good to be true, thanks for your expertise. I guess now all I need to do is get several estimates -
Be sure they itemize their statement. You want to compare apples to apples. Don't forget references.
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Old 03-19-2011, 04:47 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by jmonno View Post
Thank you for your quick replies - I have never heard of PEX and these guys that came out made it sound like it is too good to be true, thanks for your expertise. I guess now all I need to do is get several estimates -
Jmonno,

The system I described where the PEX runs from the distribution manifold all the way to the fixtures is called the "homerun" system. The pros for homerun systems are 1) no joints in enclosed runs. 2) minimal effect on water temp changes when taking a shower in case someone flushes a toilet or uses the vanity faucet. That's because each fixture has its own water line from the main manifold. The con for a homerun system is that it's more expensive than a trunk and branch system.

A trunk and branch system has 3/4" PEX lines from the main manifold to each location like the kitchen, bathrooms and laundry room. Then there is a small manifold at each location that converts the 3/4" trunk line to smaller branch lines to each fixture. The pro is that it's cheaper than the home run system. The con is that shower temperature can be affected more by flushing toilets, etc. If you will seldom have others using water in the same bathroom (or back-to-back bathroom) to affect shower temperature, a trunk and branch system would be the cheapest.

HRG


Last edited by Homerepairguy; 03-19-2011 at 10:31 PM. Reason: Changed "no joints in walls" to "no joints in enclosed runs".
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