Many of the homes we service contain pipes made of copper, galvanized steel or cast iron. It’s true that these water mains, sewer pipes or the pipes to your fixtures are nearing the end of their lifespan.
If you are wondering the time remaining on these materials, you can estimate the following – many homes should be able to get 80-100 years from cast iron, copper runs around 50-70 years, galvanized steel comes in around 40-50 years.
When we are called in to replace aged/failing piping, we mostly use the new product-on-the-block, PEX. It is a cross-linked polyethylene pipe that offers a lot of flexibility. And we mean that in its use and also literally – it’s flexible. This is the reason why it’s often easier to install (and less costly for the homeowner).
PEX comes in several colours to help distinguish its use. It also comes in a various sizes depending on the intended use. We’ve heard many times that PEX is not as durable as the old copper or galvanized, but don’t believe it. PEX is built to last as long as copper can…and very likely longer.
We still use copper though! Pipes coming from or into your fixtures, we still prefer to use copper main connections but the rest of the way, we can easily snake the PEX lines through walls, joists, floors, and ceilings.
At Chasles Plumbing, we use the PEX-A type of pipe. While we love working with the product, we do tell our clients that no piping is perfect. There are some things to be aware of – but also realize that it’s still early in the lifespan of the product. The research we have, has not been time-tested.
First off, PEX has been said to be sensitive to UV light. This means sunlight and even the regular bulbs in your home. This is often not a concern as the pipes are often hidden from a strong or prolonged light source.
Other preliminary findings show that some PEX products may leach chemicals over time. As PEX has been installed in millions of homes and businesses so far…. let’s see how this shapes up.
If you’re in need of some piping to be replaced or repaired, call Chasles Plumbing for a quote and information on how this unique product can save you time and money.