There are numerous types of water pipes that can be used for piping and repiping water supply systems. The most common among these are PEX and Copper pipes. But, the decision of which of these to go with can sometimes be confusing to home and business owners. To help clarify this confusion, here’s a quick rundown of the key differences between the two and how those differences can affect piping choice.
Advantages to Using Pex
PEX repiping: uses a plastic flexible PEX pipe. This kind of pipe carries a number of great advantages over other types of pipe including copper. One great advantage of PEX pipe is that it is extremely flexible compared to other types of water pipes. Due to this inherent quality, PEX is less likely to burst when exposed to low temperatures. This also makes it capable of making different types of bends in your walls which means fewer pipe fittings, less labor, and a lower installation cost. Fewer connection points also translate to a reduced potential for leaks.
PEX pipes are also more affordable than copper piping overall. Because of its plastic composition, it is much cheaper to produce than copper and other types of pipes that require metalwork during the manufacturing process. Those cost savings are then passed on to you, the buyer directly.
In addition, PEX water pipe systems typically connect through a central manifold. This manifold is where the pipes all come together with the main supply of water and are also divided up into the various hot and cold lines that will run through the structure. These manifolds offer a very helpful extra control point with which homeowners or service plumbers can more quickly and easily shut down or turn on specific portions of the structure’s water supply system without affecting other portions. The PEX pipes are also colored BLUE for cold water and RED for hot water
Advantages to Using Copper
Copper repiping involves the use of hard, or in some cases, soft copper piping. Copper pipe is unique in its utilization of all copper and brass components through the pipe and fittings it uses. For this reason, copper piping is quite durable.
Pex Repiping vs. Copper Repiping
When it comes to making a final decision of which pipe type to use, the factor of initial cost undoubtedly swings to PEX pipes as the better option. PEX requires fewer connections and is less expensive to buy, which leads to big savings upfront. PEX is also more DIY-friendly, not requiring special soldering equipment and know-how to work with, as does copper pipe, and its flexibility adds to its resistance against low temperatures.
For all of these reasons, PEX is often the preferred piping material for many homeowners. However, for those willing to forgo initial costs for the benefit of piping that generally lives a longer life before degradation sets in, copper can be another option. It’s also important to note that water supply piping systems can be composed of numerous pipe types, so it’s possible to use PEX where it’s better suited while also using copper in the same way in other areas of the same structure.
If you’d like additional help choosing between PEX repiping and copper repiping in your home or business, we’re glad to help. Our Rapid Response Team is Orange County’s premier plumbing team for all things plumbing. Give us a call today, and we’ll help you to make the best and most beneficial decision for your home or business.
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