Copper Water Pipe Replacement: Basics That Everyone Should Know
Copper repiping is a complete replacement of damaged or old and decrepit plumping supply system. This is called for if the piping system is badly and extensively corroded. Signs of corroded pipes include decrease in water flow, signs of leaks along the pipeline, trust-colored water from the tap and reduced water pressure. Cracked or corroded valves are also signs of a potentially large piping problem.
This process can be pretty extensive. If possible, it is best to get this process done during a renovation or remodeling before the walls are finally reinstalled and painted. Wall patching might be necessary after a new piping system has been installed.
Repiping Process: What Activities to Expect
Copper repiping is an extensive repair process. It generally lasts from 1 to 3 days. Actual replacement of the pipes includes two basic steps; the removal of the existing old, corroded pipes, and the installation of new ones. Installation of the plumbing replacement includes installing the following materials:
• New US-type “L” hard copper pipe, which must be properly attached then secured
• Kwik 1/4 -turn ball-type water stops
• New water supply lines (materials made of stainless steel)
After installation, the plumber will turn the water back on. This will evaluate if the piping replacement is functioning properly. Pressure testing will be done to find out if there are any other leaks and then the system will be flushed.
Replacement of fixtures and drains are typically not included in a standard copper repiping process. Faucet repairs are also not something routinely included in this process. What it does include is the replacement and installation of new water piping for both hot and cold water, from water source to all of the existing fixtures and faucets.
For successful repiping process, the problem must be assessed properly. Professional site inspection is necessary.
There are a number of choices for repiping. Choices include metal pipes and plastic pipes. Metal pipes include materials such as copper, brass and galvanized iron or steel. Plastic choices include chlorine polyvinyl chloride (CPVC), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyethylene (PE), Kitec and polybutylene (PB).
Plastic pipes typically come less expensive than metal pipes like copper repiping. However, these do no afford the same reliability and durability as what can be expected from metal pipes. One of the problems typically arise from the plastic fittings. These are usually manufactured by companies overseas, which do not often strictly adhere to set standards. These fittings are often made from low-quality materials. The joining methods used in plastic pipes are also of questionable quality that are then glued together, crimped and banded. This process makes the joined areas|junctions structurally weak. Plastic is also prone to breaking and cracking sooner when exposed to changing temperatures. It quickly turns brittle when exposed to heat. It also has a shorter life span than metal pipes.
Of all the different available metal pipes, copper is the proven best choice for repiping. For decades, this is the most preferred material because of its durability and strength against changing temperatures and weather conditions.
Some of the best advantages and benefits of copper repiping include:
• Water tastes better
• No rust and contaminants in the water
• Stronger water pressure
• Less risk for slab leaks
Copper repiping must be done as soon as signs of corruption appear. Ignoring signs of old and damaged pipes can lead to serious structural damage. This process can be costly, mainly because copper material is more expensive. However, the cost is worth it compared to the much larger cost of repair due to leaks and water damage or having to replace your newly plastic repiping with copper down the road.