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Old 02-22-2011, 08:38 PM   #1
sfj
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Pex Certification


I am about to embark on a repiping of my house because I have 20 year old polybutylene. I have done a ton of research and reading and decided to go with Uponor Pex-A. I know I can do this and have done many plumbing repairs in my house over the years. Last month I even bought some Uponor tubing, fittings and the tool and installed an irrigation system in the back yard just for practice. All the fittings worked flawlessly. So I call the plumbing inspector and tell him I want to repipe and ask if there is anything special I need beyond the normal permit paperwork. He replies that if I install Pex I need to be certified by the manufacterer of whatever Pex I am using. He said if I repipe in copper or CPVC it is no problem but only with the Pex do need I certification. I was kind of stunned and hung up. I called back and asked him if I got a piece of paper from the manufacterer stating I am certified is this ok and he said yes. Has any one else had this come up before. I do not want to do the work with out a permit in case it is an issue when I sell the house. The reason I am stunned by this is that copper is a heck of a lot more difficult to install than Pex and I dont need to be certified by a copper manufacterer. I dont want to use CPVC because I really want the manifold system and minimal fittings in the wall or attic. Do any of you guys have certification and how did you get it.

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Old 02-22-2011, 09:57 PM   #2
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Pex Certification


It's because most of those pex products have warranty from the manufacturer. The certificate that most want you to have us be a journeymen plumber or similar.

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Old 02-22-2011, 09:59 PM   #3
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I have leaks at home I use either copper or for the harder to reach area's I use wirsbo, because Its fire rated and has a 25-50 year warranty.
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sfj (02-23-2011)
Old 02-23-2011, 10:29 AM   #4
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Pex Certification


i'm pretty sure as a property owner, you have the right to pull a permit yourself for any work you or a contractor does on the home. maybe your state is different somehow. the point is, once you pull the permit and do the work, as long as it is to code, the inspector will pass it. the inspector inspects the work done, not who did the work.

with pex-a, i'm sure that uponor will require proof that a licensed and certified contractor did the work should you have any warranty claims. so if you do the work yourself, you lose the warranty.
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Old 02-23-2011, 08:34 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NitroNate View Post
i'm pretty sure as a property owner, you have the right to pull a permit yourself for any work you or a contractor does on the home. maybe your state is different somehow. the point is, once you pull the permit and do the work, as long as it is to code, the inspector will pass it. the inspector inspects the work done, not who did the work.

with pex-a, i'm sure that uponor will require proof that a licensed and certified contractor did the work should you have any warranty claims. so if you do the work yourself, you lose the warranty.
I am in FL. I know that I have a right to pull a permit as a home owner and have done this before for other projects. Also I know that Uponor will not honor the warranty because I am not a licensed plumber. But the inspector was very clear in saying I need to be certified by the manufacterer of the PEX brand that I use. He will be inspecting the work but he will not even let me pull a permit until I have the certification.
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Old 02-24-2011, 08:26 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by sfj View Post
I am in FL. I know that I have a right to pull a permit as a home owner and have done this before for other projects. Also I know that Uponor will not honor the warranty because I am not a licensed plumber. But the inspector was very clear in saying I need to be certified by the manufacterer of the PEX brand that I use. He will be inspecting the work but he will not even let me pull a permit until I have the certification.
Call a local supply house that stocks the product and find out when they will be having their next certification class -- Usually held only once a month.

If that doesn't pan out, find out who the local distributor is and see if you can sign up for one of their classes.

If you do go, take notes, keep your mouth shut and do not volunteer that you are not a licensed Plumber -- The class is going to be filled with Journeyman Plumbers and their Apprentices who take a dim view to Homeowners stepping on their turf.
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:34 AM   #7
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Pex Certification


I had the exact same thing happen to me. My inspector told me I had to have a licensed pex installer install the pex. I ended up doing a ton of research on this because it wasn't in any code or ordinance anywhere. I ended up talking with the state of California and that guy said my inspector was wrong.

I talked with the inspector and asked him if he could provide me with the code bulletin or ordinance and he said he would. Called me back 2 hours later and apologized. He said it was part of the old code and didn't realize it wasn't fact any more. I could install it myself.

The weird thing is that 2 separate building officials in my city told me this. I suspect they don't like PEX and are trying to make it hard for homeowners to install it.
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Old 02-25-2011, 08:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Widdershins View Post
Call a local supply house that stocks the product and find out when they will be having their next certification class -- Usually held only once a month.

If that doesn't pan out, find out who the local distributor is and see if you can sign up for one of their classes.

If you do go, take notes, keep your mouth shut and do not volunteer that you are not a licensed Plumber -- The class is going to be filled with Journeyman Plumbers and their Apprentices who take a dim view to Homeowners stepping on their turf.
Good advice. I am not sure if they sell it locally but I will try to find out.
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Old 02-25-2011, 08:51 PM   #9
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Pex Certification


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Originally Posted by wease View Post
I had the exact same thing happen to me. My inspector told me I had to have a licensed pex installer install the pex. I ended up doing a ton of research on this because it wasn't in any code or ordinance anywhere. I ended up talking with the state of California and that guy said my inspector was wrong.

I talked with the inspector and asked him if he could provide me with the code bulletin or ordinance and he said he would. Called me back 2 hours later and apologized. He said it was part of the old code and didn't realize it wasn't fact any more. I could install it myself.

The weird thing is that 2 separate building officials in my city told me this. I suspect they don't like PEX and are trying to make it hard for homeowners to install it.
I really hate to get into a debate with these inspectors but I think I will ask him where this is mandated in writing because I read the entire code and dont see anything about certification. They may be very suspicious about pex after the polybutylene fiasco. Thank you.

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