Should I Replace the Plumbing Pipes in My Home?
Plumbing pipes are often overlooked when maintaining your home, and it is very important to keep them up to date for a variety of reasons. There are many problems that are cause for replacing your plumbing pipes, and if these causes are not addressed in a timely manner, you will have to deal with the risks involved. Reasons to replace your pipes include, but are not limited to, pinhole leaks, corroded pipes, or a damaged sewer line. See our article “Plumbing Leaks, What Is It Really Costing You?” for a deeper look”. Here are some common problems and repiping solutions.
Corroded or Galvanized Pipes
Corroded or galvanized pipes are very common in old houses, because the pipes slowly erode and become plugged up over time. If you have low water pressure when using hot water, this can be a sign of corroded pipes. You may also see a brown or yellow color when you first turn on your water, which is rust, and is a sign of decay in your pipes. Often these problems are made worse when only the worst part of the plumbing is replaced, instead of the entire system. This can lead to even more corroded piping over time, because when two different types of metals touch (especially when one of them is copper), the corrosion can get worse. The best solution is to replace the entire piping system at one time. Although, this can be very expensive, and is an investment, in many cases it can prevent more costly damage.
Small Pinhole Leaks
Another common problem to watch out for is small pinhole leaks. While these may not seem like a big deal, they can lead to serious water damage in your house over time, and cause issues with the water pressure and mold within your walls or ceiling. You should inspect your pipes very regularly, at least once a year, especially if you have an older home that is prone to these sorts of problems. If there is any sign at all of trouble, be sure to address it immediately. This is the best way to make sure your pipes get fixed correctly and stay fixed.
There are a few ways to go about replacing your pipes in order to minimize the cost and time of the project. If you are planning on renovating your house, or even just part of it, replacing the pipes completely when you renovate is one of the easiest ways to do it. You will probably need to use a plumber’s services anyway when you renovate, and the cost of replacing the plumbing will probably be less because in many cases the walls and floors will already be open. If you really need to replace pipes that are buried within walls, PEX piping is one of the best solutions. PEX piping is flexible, resists scale and chlorine deposits, doesn’t corrode or develop pinhole leaks, is less labor intensive to install than metal or rigid plastic, and has fewer connections and fittings. PEX Piping can make turns up to 90 degrees without the use of a coupling. It also comes in spools, so it can be installed on long runs avoiding the use of couplings. With less connections you reduce the possibility of leaks in the future. Additionally, PEX Piping does not transfer heat as easily as copper piping, and is durable from below freezing to 200 degrees Fahrenheit, and can be inserted into your walls with minimal deconstruction.
While replacing your piping may seem daunting, it is very important for both the quality and safety of your home and everyone that lives in it. The specialists at Blue Sky Plumbing will review the options with you to see if a re-pipe is the right solution for you.