Over time minerals such as calcium can build up and clog the pipes in your home. A little bit of build up is normal but when the flow of water is restricted its time to replace your plumbing.
Re-piping or re-plumbing, as it is sometimes called, a home is just what it sounds like. You take out all the old water pipes and put brand new ones back in their place.
Re-piping isn’t part of a regular plumbing maintenance cycle. It becomes necessary when things go wrong.
The Wrong Pipe
Copper is the original plumbing pipe and it is still in wide use today. There’s a reason. When all it is carrying is water, copper will last for decades, even centuries, without needing to be replaced.
So why do people choose other types of pipes? Cost is the main reason. Copper is expensive and is getting more expensive every day. Because of that expense chemical companies have developed a number of alternatives to copper.
A number of years ago a pipe product consisting of polybutylene was developed called Quest pipe. You can identify it by its gray color. The benefits were cost and flexibility.
As time went on durability became a huge issue with Quest pipe. It happens to break down in the presence of chlorine, which just happens to be in all municipal water. By the time this was discovered, Quest pipe had already been installed in thousands of homes.
Today, the most common reason homeowners have for re-piping their whole house is to replace polybutylene pipe. When you are out house shopping you just might want to have a professional look at the plumbing before you make your purchase.
Know Your Water
Copper is the best choice for supplying water to the fixtures in your home except for one condition: your water can’t be acidic. As a metal, copper is relatively non-reactive, but it is still a metal and dissolves in the presence of acid.
The PH of municipal water is controlled to extend the life of the pipes that make up the municipal supply system. Well, water, on the other hand, is whatever it is when it comes out of the ground.
Unless the acidity of the water is corrected with a treatment system, copper pipes with wells can dissolve over time if the water is acidic.
The first important step in re-piping of residential or commercial property is an extensive inspection by a master plumber such as JMS Express Plumbing.
Sometimes even a simple pipe repair may get you the desired results. Sometimes all outdated materials such as cast iron pipes and lead pipes may have to be removed, so a more invasive pipe replacement may be needed.
A complete re-piping of the entire plumbing network in the residential building will include potable water and domestic piping and wastewater piping. New cold and hot distribution or branch and main pipes may also be included.
Re-piping is a messy and time-consuming job. The floors, walls, and ceiling are cut open for exposing the old pipes. The main line is turned off and all pipes are removed. The entire process will take 2-3 days, so expect to be without water during that period.