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Old 12-27-2014, 09:58 AM   #1
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Plumbing in the basement...


i am finishing my basement and just going through the "easy" part with framing. I have completed the easy frames... but there are some non-easy frames around plumbing that i have to consider. This is where i reach out with a few of questions...

The plumbing right now is all copper and basically runs under every single joist in the basement. they didnt even think to run it along the massive i-beam that runs perpendicular to each joist and then simply feed off of that.

so i am thinking of a few options and was wondering what the experts think.

1. Was going to re-run the basement with flex plastic piping, but recently heard that my house insurance may not cover some brands of pipe. thats not good. there is a litigation issue apparently.



2. copper has been around for ever, so why change, i am leaning here. i can re-run my lines, but that would probably take a lot of time and effort. i have a wife and kids - who could probably tolerate a bit...



3. drop my ceiling by 2" with 2x2s or 2x3s? but i am also putting in a subfloor.



4. other - dont know..



5. my kitchen sink drain pipe (second post with pictures), is about 2 to 3 inches away from the exterior wall, effectively in the way of any framing (specifically the top sill). how do i frame around this?

Also - i plan to make two slopes in the drainage system. right now, the slope is high, making the bottom half of the pvc pipe, 6" away from the wall. so my thought is to make one higher and parallel to the wall and then a second one going directly to the floor. that way, i can make a frame for a sitting area about it.
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Plumbing in the basement...-img_20141226_141720.jpg  
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Old 12-27-2014, 09:59 AM   #2
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here are the additional picx
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Old 12-27-2014, 10:25 AM   #3
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Personally, I'm not a big fan of pex, although it seems to be the new..... 'fad' these days. It's certainly easier to work with and resists freeze breakage a lot better.... but there are several disadvantages. Sunlight breaks pex down, and there is no way of knowing whether the coil you're buying has been soaking in the sun somewhere along its transport from factory to the store. It also lacks the bacteria/mold fighting properties found in copper piping, and it's certainly nowhere as sturdy in standing up against the jaws and teeth of the local mouse/rat population.

Frankly, the risks are a lot larger with pex than with copper, and my guess is that this pex fad we're seeing will eventually be a lot like knob and tube wiring... not an insurance company in the world will touch you if you have pex in your house.

Last edited by Bob Sanders; 12-27-2014 at 10:28 AM.
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Old 12-27-2014, 01:46 PM   #4
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You may want to consider a suspended ceiling (tiles). You would lose a couple of inches, but still have access to plumbing and electrical for service/maintenance.
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Old 12-27-2014, 01:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Sanders View Post
Personally, I'm not a big fan of pex, although it seems to be the new..... 'fad' these days. It's certainly easier to work with and resists freeze breakage a lot better.... but there are several disadvantages. Sunlight breaks pex down, and there is no way of knowing whether the coil you're buying has been soaking in the sun somewhere along its transport from factory to the store. It also lacks the bacteria/mold fighting properties found in copper piping, and it's certainly nowhere as sturdy in standing up against the jaws and teeth of the local mouse/rat population.

Frankly, the risks are a lot larger with pex than with copper, and my guess is that this pex fad we're seeing will eventually be a lot like knob and tube wiring... not an insurance company in the world will touch you if you have pex in your house.
These are some of the arguments I used 10 yrs. ago but no more.....
Fads come and go- pex is here to stay

You buy coils or sticks sealed in colored plastic or a box- or don't purchase it...
bacteria mold properties of copper are meaningless to me

Mice eating pex is an urban legend. More chance of a mouse chewing on romex....

There isn't a residential plumber in my town running copper anymore. A lot of it used in commercial as well. No way an insurance company walks away.....

As for the ceiling? I'd look for a way to drop the ceiling ....
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Old 12-27-2014, 02:43 PM   #6
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no votes for re-running the plumbing? it seems "reasonable" do all hot 1 day and then cold a second... i could reuse some of the pipes as well, just buy elbows and connectors...

Last edited by Amitabh; 12-27-2014 at 02:50 PM.
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Old 12-27-2014, 03:22 PM   #7
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Sure, you could redrill the joists. You need to be at least 2" from the edge. Then feed new pex through and connect to the copper drops. But moving they drain lines is another issue in itself.
You will also need to open the sheet metal pan to drill the joists.
If you want to invest the time I suppose its doable
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Old 12-27-2014, 04:42 PM   #8
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bacteria mold properties of copper are meaningless to me
Then you should ask a roofer why they hang a copper wire across the roof when they have a moss problem.

Quote:
Mice eating pex is an urban legend. More chance of a mouse chewing on romex....
It's not myth. It happens. Granted it happens with romex too, but the point it it happens... and it wouldn't if copper is used.
Quote:
I have read many discussions regarding Pex and just wante to let you know our problem. Please keep in mind, my house is only 2 years old and is 4,500 sq. ft. located in Southern California. Friday night, we found a lot of water leaking from our 2nd floor to our first, soaking our ceiling, walls, a door frame and carpet. We called out a plumber and after cutting a couple holes he discovered a leak in our Pex line caused by mice. It was repaired. Saturday, a second line in a garage wall began leaking. This time I opened up the wall and discovered 3 seperate locations where the mice were chewing threw our lines like it is candy or something.
http://terrylove.com/forums/index.ph...ase-read.5154/
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No way an insurance company walks away.....
They talked that way about asbestos insulation at one time too. Of course hind sight is 20/20
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Old 12-27-2014, 06:12 PM   #9
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Then you should ask a roofer why they hang a copper wire across the roof when they have a moss problem.

It's not myth. It happens. Granted it happens with romex too, but the point it it happens... and it wouldn't if copper is used.

http://terrylove.com/forums/index.ph...ase-read.5154/
They talked that way about asbestos insulation at one time too. Of course hind sight is 20/20
Yes, I know about copper wire and roofs- also see the same with galvanized flashing but I don't want galvanized pipes either. My point was- it is a meaningless benefit to me.

Hmm, two examples of rodents eating pipe. That will surely kill the pex industry

They also said the cotton gin was folly...

Every product that comes along goes through this process. Most end up being excepted in the trades. With pex, time will tell I suppose. But I'm convinced its here to stay.

In the OP's case, it would be an ideal product to get the pipes up in the joists with minimal amount of couplings and soldering. In fact, no soldering would be if he chose push fit fittings. Also, dripping water from pipes would not affect the joining of fittings as it would with copper. And no fire hazard....
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Old 12-27-2014, 06:23 PM   #10
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Hmm, two examples of rodents eating pipe. That will surely kill the pex industry
Well, you said it was a 'myth', while clearly it is not. Now... how often it happens I haven't a clue, but I would hazard to guess not too often. But then if you happen to be one of the few it happens to, my guess is that you won't be thinking of the statistics behind the question because you'll be too busy trying to figure out how much it's going to cost to replace all the pex with something a bit more reliable.
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Old 12-27-2014, 06:50 PM   #11
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Well, you said it was a 'myth', while clearly it is not. Now... how often it happens I haven't a clue, but I would hazard to guess not too often. But then if you happen to be one of the few it happens to, my guess is that you won't be thinking of the statistics behind the question because you'll be too busy trying to figure out how much it's going to cost to replace all the pex with something a bit more reliable.
Maybe so, but I find pex quite reliable and a mouse wont change my mind. I'll just get a cat.
I wouldn't be worrying about electrolysis in my copper flooding my house either either....

Since entering the service side of plumbing close to 10 yrs. ago I have never came across a chewed pex line. In fact, I can only recall 3 failures in pex systems.
Two were installer errors(uncrimped or poorly crimped rings)
The third was a failed brass fitting- seems like they have since been recalled by the manufacturer. I now only use plastic fittings

I have long lost count of copper pipe issues I have seen....
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Old 12-27-2014, 07:26 PM   #12
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Maybe so, but I find pex quite reliable and a mouse wont change my mind.
Yes, well... you're a plumber doing jobs in someone else's home, so I'm not sure what YOU'RE mind has to do with it.

Do you warn your customers of the (maybe remote) possibilty of rodent damage? Do you advise your customers that pex does not contain the same anti fungicide properties that copper holds? Do you tell them that pex breaks down when exposed it to sunlight? Or do you avoid discussing all of this because YOUR mind is made up?

There are still many unanswered questions on pex, and maybe those questions are all moot and pex will turn out to be the greatest thing since sliced bread, but none of that has been absolutely proven yet so it could well turn out the other way around.

Good read on pex:
http://failures.wikispaces.com/PEX+Plumbing+Failures
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Old 12-27-2014, 08:17 PM   #13
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Yes, well... you're a plumber doing jobs in someone else's home, so I'm not sure what YOU'RE mind has to do with it.I was replying to your example of a mouse chewing MY pipe.
Do you warn your customers of the (maybe remote) possibilty of rodent damage? Do you advise your customers that pex does not contain the same anti fungicide properties that copper holds? Do you tell them that pex breaks down when exposed it to sunlight? Or do you avoid discussing all of this because YOUR mind is made up? Most of my customers request pex. And yes, I have had these discussions with customers. But to say I avoid it? No

There are still many unanswered questions on pex, and maybe those questions are all moot and pex will turn out to be the greatest thing since sliced bread, but none of that has been absolutely proven yet so it could well turn out the other way around.

Good read on pex:
http://failures.wikispaces.com/PEX+Plumbing+Failures
Nice read. I'm sure I could find reference to debunk most of that....
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Old 12-27-2014, 08:58 PM   #14
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Nice read. I'm sure I could find reference to debunk most of that....
I'm sure you could... and that's EXACTLY the point I'm driving at. There isn't enough prove either way at this point in time, which is why one needs to be careful and considerate when choosing pex.

Meanwhile copper has been used in literally BILLIONS of applications all over the world. Indeed copper has been used for centuries. We know what copper is all about.

Not a hard choice in my mind.
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Old 12-28-2014, 02:22 PM   #15
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i think i am going to re-run the copper pipes....

elbows, connectors, and some solder....
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