Types of Pipes You Can Use to Repipe Your Home

Dirty White Leaky PVC Pipe

Repiping is a big plumbing repair, but there comes a time when replacing the pipes in your home is the safest and most economical solution, especially if you’re frequently dealing with plumbing leak repairs and other issues with your outdated pipes. If you’re ready to repipe your home, you’re probably wondering what the best options for replacement pipes are. Here’s what you need to know about when to repipe as well as some of the most common materials used in repipe plumbing in Sacramento.

When to Repipe

The biggest reason most homeowners decide to repipe their homes is that they have old pipes that are experiencing continual problems. The main reason these problems keep cropping up is that many old houses used galvanized steel or iron pipes that are subject to corrosion. This corrosion will cause multiple issues such as sediment in the water that affects the taste and smell, noise when the water runs, and problems with leaks and clogs in the line. However, some newer homes that have polybutylene pipes installed might also need to be upgraded during a remodel. Or if you’re having issues with water contamination or leaks, you’ll need to replace your pipes. Repiping can solve plumbing issues like low water pressure, slab leaks, rusty or discolored water, and temperature fluctuations when flushing the toilet. If a plumber has confirmed the need for repiping, there are typically three main choices to consider.

Copper Pipe

Copper is the only type of metal piping still used in plumbing. Copper pipes are a great option because they’re small and rigid, so they’re able to be used in both outdoor and indoor plumbing. They’re far more resistant to corrosion than other metals that were used for plumbing in the past. In fact, copper pipes can last more than 100 years before they need to be replaced. They’re also fire and weather-resistant and usually come with a manufacturer’s warranty that’s decades-long. Another benefit of copper is that it’s 100% recyclable, so it’s good for the environment. The only downside of copper pipes is that they’re more difficult to install than other materials, which means the cost of installation goes up as well.

PVC

Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is another popular option for plumbing pipes. Unlike polybutylene pipes that were typically used between the ’70s and ’90s, PVC pipe is more durable and easier to obtain, so it’s sometimes used to do a partial repiping project. They’re totally resistant to corrosion and don’t require any welding like metal pipes, making the installation easier. There are multiple fittings, it’s lightweight, and it’s more flexible than copper. It’s a very affordable option as well. A disadvantage of PVC is that it can be noisy when exposed to high temperatures. There is the potential for leaks if the joints aren’t properly installed with adhesive, so like other plumbing projects, it’s best to avoid doing it yourself.

PEX

PEX is high-density polyethylene that’s been through a cross-linked chemical reaction in order to be strong, resilient, and resistant to low temperatures. There are different types of PEX, depending on how the cross-linking method was done. The polyethylene is melted and extruded into a tube shape and is very flexible, so it’s easier and less expensive to ship. It can be bent to 90-degree angles without the risk of leaking. It doesn’t corrode or get scale buildup and resists freezing better than other materials. PEX is used in most modern plumbing and repiping projects. To learn more from a plumber in Sacramento, contact Bullseye Leak Detection, Inc., today.