For most homeowners, change is not something we like, specifically in the area of our plumbing. The average homeowner usually doesn’t keep up on the latest plumbing technologies, especially for those who rarely use a plumber. Over the last thirty years, there have been significant breakthroughs in drain cleaning, sewer line replacement, water heaters, smart pipes, and home repiping. Most notably, in the areas of home repiping, the use of Cross-linked Polyethylene (PEX) is soon becoming mainstream for most plumbing companies. Still, some plumbers and municipalities have yet to adopt the use of PEX, while others have been on board for several years using it in new construction as well as home re-pipes.
Some Of The Advantages Of PEX
Costs Much Less Than Copper
With the cost of copper escalating in recent years, PEX is much more attractive because it’s much more cost-effective. Additionally, the installation time dramatically reduced.
PEX is considered tubing verses a pipe, perfect for corners and long runs through joists that copper would be considerably harder to navigate through. Its flexibility makes for easy installation. Unlike copper that uses heat and solder, PEX uses brass or poly crimp rings along with a crimp tool. The tools are very affordable so that the average do-it-yourselfer could afford it.
Pex Can Withstand Hot And Cold
Another great feature is that the tubing can withstand temperatures as high as 200 degrees Fahrenheit. While it cannot promise it will not ever leak in cold climates, it is less likely to leak than copper under the same conditions. If temperatures fall below 20-degree Fahrenheit, it can cause ice to form in the pipes. Due to the varied nature and flexibility of the tube, it is less likely to leak.
Fewer Problems With Hard Water
While not wholly immune from hard water buildup, it does have the edge over copper and is resistant to pitting. The modern PEX is much more resistant to hard water corrosion and is less likely to have issues with clogs, leaks, burst pipes, and low water pressure.
PEX Has A Life Expectancy Of 40 To 50-Years
The life expectancy of PEX will depend much on usage and water quality. Experts have put a 40 to 50-year life expectancy on the product under normal conditions. Other factors that may play a role in a reduced life span are exposure to sunlight, as well as untested levels of extreme cold and heat.