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Old 07-19-2015, 09:56 AM   #1
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Tub to shower plumbing questions


Good morning.

I have started the project on remodeling our bathroom... Tiles, floors and walls out... All new flooring and will replace shower tub walls with Hardie.

My main line is 7/8" copper from the main supply, and from the water heater.

All my outlets then break off from that with 5/8" copper.

My Two bathrooms and kitchen have their water needs pretty close together, so the lines all don't run very far.

I am redoing the master bath right now.

As for the plumbing, I have some questions:
Since I am not skilled in Copper, I have so far read good reviews about it, I was thinking if switching my lines to PEX using Sharkbite connectors. Does anyone have anything against that?
Or should I stick with copper but still use Sharkbite connectors.

Since I will obviously have to move the faucets and install a shower head, I need to change the lines anyway. So I will raise my faucet hight and then from that run a line to a "changer / splitter valve" and from that I want to run a line to a removable shower head and then a fixed shower head.
I have heard that when using fixed pipe, one had to avoid more than three 90 degree bends, how much truth is there really in that, and would this apply to the much more subtle bends you get with PEX?

Since I have fairly easy access to all my water supply lines from the basement, should a switch from copper to PEX as far back as possible, or is fine to just connect where the old tub faucets are removed and extend from there?

My current pipes as mentioned are 5/8", is that good by today's standard, or should I increase that? Can I even increase that?

Increasing from 5/8" to say 3/4"... Would it be acceptable to use the existing T which goes from the main line of 7/8" to 5/8" and cut the 5/8" pipe an inch or so up and the step up to a 3/4", or should I rather just cut into the main line and install a new 3/4"?
I ask this because I don't really want to disturb the main 7/8" line too much because I am not skilled in copper soldering /sweating, etc.

I know that was a long post, I just wanted to get as much info out there as possible for a good response, I won't be surprised if I still left something out :-)

Thanks!

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Last edited by GreenSpringbok; 07-19-2015 at 10:19 AM.
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Old 07-19-2015, 11:44 AM   #2
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Tub to shower plumbing questions


5/8" {nominal) copper is 1/2"
7/8 (nominal) is 3/4"

PEX should be fine for most piping ,except for the tub spout--this must be copper or threaded---or the restrictive nature of Pex fittings can cause back pressure to make the shower head dribble when the tub is filling.

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Old 07-19-2015, 11:55 AM   #3
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Tub to shower plumbing questions


I would go with the PEX just due to the expense and the ease of using it. Shark bites are real nice but will cost you a lot more in the end. Take the time and learn how to crimp, this is where you will save some money.
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:22 PM   #4
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Tub to shower plumbing questions


Thanks!

I am from South Africa, so I am still getting used to a 2x4 not actually being 2" x 4"
..etc :-). So I sometimes end up asking stupid questions. Thanks for the clarity.

OK so...

Should I "upgrade" from 1/2" to 3/4" from the main line to the faucets and shower? Or leave it 1/2"?

I will have a tub in this bathroom, so we should be good with PEX all the way, right?

Thanks for the tip on the crimp... I will work on that for sure.

An feedback on the concept of maximum bends, or "arcs" since PEX can bend to where we want it?

1 shower head will be pretty much straight above the faucet, and the second shower head will be probably about 6 to foot of PEX pipe away.

Thanks for the advice so far.
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Old 07-20-2015, 05:41 AM   #5
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Tub to shower plumbing questions


3/4" main run to the bathroom is ideal--however, in most cases 1/2" will work fine--'

If you have a dual shower head--your mixer valve might NEED 3/4" to maintain proper flow.

I will leave any PEX answers to other members--we can't use PEX where I work--so I have little experience with it---

PEX is a great product---but our polititians write the building codes here---welcome to Illinois.
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