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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am considering buying a house built in 2005 in the pacific northwest. I can't get in to look at it because of shelter-in-place orders.


I know CPVC was popular in this region for a while. Anyone care to hazard a guess as to whether it was used in new construction in 2005?


Thanks.
 

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Property Mgt/Maint
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I am not fan of cpvc, but it wouldn't be a deciding factor whether to buy a house or not. Plenty of other hidden problems to worry about.
Are you considering buying site unseen?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
No, did an a quick unofficial walkthrough. Saw other signs of poor upkeep which raised the red flag that the owner may be leaving a host problems behind.



My house, built in 1999, has CPVC and my plumber hates it. He wonders why a class action lawsuit hasn't been filed, yet.
 

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Naildriver
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Nothing to cause a class action suit on CPVC. It is a fine material. Certain brands get brittle after 15 years or so, but only if you decide to cut it or let water stand in it and it freezes. I prefer PEX over all of them, copper, cpvc, and of course PB.
 

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As long as it's not Steel or Quest (it will be gray if it's Quest) there no reason to be concerned.
 

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Our FL house and most others in FL have CPVC. In NY we never use it. It works just fine.
 

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I am considering buying a house built in 2005 in the pacific northwest. I can't get in to look at it because of shelter-in-place orders.

Thanks.
In 2005 it could be Pex. Pex is faster and most contractors want to get in and out as quick as possible...Pex allows that.
Were you able to look at the mechanicals? The water heater connection should indicate what is being used. Or you can add the realtor to check it out for you. Commission is everything.
Or you could just wait it out. Everyone else has to as well.
 

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retired painter
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My reply disappeared :vs_mad: let me try again


I've never seen CPVC used in new construction. When copper was being phased out, PEX took hold. I know plumbers don't like CPVC but I do as it's easy for dummies like me to work with.


My house is mostly plumbed with CPVC with some of it being 30+ yrs old - no issues.
 

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Naildriver
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A few years ago, I replaced my copper runs in the basement with PEX. I left the vertical stubs of copper because I didn't feel like cutting into the walls to replace them. I did change the shower/tub runs because I changed the valves and they were accessible.

Last week, the copper hot water vertical to the kitchen developed a pin hole leak which created not a stream, but a mist of water. Repair was simple, but it seems time to bite the bullet and do the verticals.

Copper was bullet proof generally, but well water takes its toll. The copper we removed making the main runs was crushable by hand. Borrowed time.
 

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I personally like PEX and copper over all else, and for different reasons. There is no perfect material.


CPVC is easy to handle and connect. No heat involved. But CPVC pipes need to be properly secured to the framing. You cannot subject it to mechanical stress like copper would. An attic with CPVC running across the top of the joists with insulation covering it partially, may not take much to break or stress it when a pest control or electrician or whoever step on it. Some people also run CPVC all the way to the outside exposing a few inches of CPVC to the sun at hosebib connections, that's when CPVC breaks down. CPVC also should not be use when connected to tankless water heaters, need at least 36" to 48" of metal pipe buffer, and of course if you have a CPVC drop ear 90 elbow behind the wall, you should crank a brass nipple into it for your tub spout connection, that would just crack the threaded female threading. I would say CPVC is fine but is not tolerant of bad plumbing.


PEX is great, no joints. You can do home runs easily with just more materials and control each part of your house's hot and cold supply individually. The only complaint I have heard is PEX is vulnerable to rats and raccoon chewing through it in attics and crawlspaces.


I love copper too. Expensive too. I still put my "ends" in copper just to give some rigidity to the device being mounted. For example if I have to rough in hot and cold supply through the floor of a kitchen sink cabinet I would switch to copper for the risers just because people ABUSE the space inside a sink cabinet. Piles things on top push things in all kinds of junk, leaking bleach and lysol...and I don't feel PEX or CPVC is as solid there. Copper is a pain to work with in crawlspaces or attics, ProPress may help address that but still too pricey for an occasional DIYer. Sharkbites I don't like,
 

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A "Handy Husband"
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While replacing a shower arm connected to a CPVC drop ear elbow, I broke the pipe off in the wall. The drop ear elbow was not secured and was floating behind the wall. Not a fun repair.
 

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My reply disappeared :vs_mad: let me try again


I do as it's easy for dummies like me to work with.

My house is mostly plumbed with CPVC with some of it being 30+ yrs old - no issues.
You are correct, it is pretty easy. I thought so as well until I began using PEX
...and I will NEVER go back.
Next time you have a project try PEX. It will make you throw away your CPVC glue.
 

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retired painter
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Next time you have a project try PEX. It will make you throw away your CPVC glue.

I did think about it last time but between not having any hands on experience with PEX and the cost of the tools needed I decided to stick with CPVC. Other than repairs [mine or family/friends] I don't expect to do any plumbing in the future.
 

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Copper was bullet proof generally, but well water takes its toll.

On other words, it's not bulletproof.:smile: Maybe in 50 years we'll be complaining about PEX, who knows? But PEX it is, for me.



Like Mark, I haven't seen any full residential construction done in CPVC. Personally don't like it the times I've worked with it (commercial or limited residential.) But as others have said, haven't heard anything really negative about it like polybutyl. Do virtually all my plumbing in PEX with occasional dalliances with copper where necessary by code or some other reason.
 

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Copper was bullet proof generally, but well water takes its toll. The copper we removed making the main runs was crushable by hand. Borrowed time.
I myself have always liked copper.....before I found out about PEX.
But living in northern Illinois for most of my life I have seen my share of frozen pipes, galvanized, copper and CPVC.
PEX, in my opinion will not ever have that problem. That being said, if anyone knows differently please let me know. I just can't imagine PEX freezing and bursting. I know the fittings are brass. Perhaps any issue would lie there.
 
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