How do plumbers repipe a house?
Repipe is what it says it is: replacing pipes in your home. A whole house repipe job is replacing the entire plumbing system in your home. This is a large undertaking and will take, on average, three to five days to complete.
Once a whole house repipes job is completed, you will immediately notice the change in how the water flows, the water pressure, improved water bills, and fewer clogged pipes or leaks. The best part of repiping a house is it will last you forever. That alone can justify the house repipe cost and the time it takes for the job to be completed.
The first thing plumbers do before they start a whole house repipe job is to inspect all the plumbing to get an idea of how much and what type of materials are needed. They have already done this have already when you were given an estimate, but they will examine the job again to verify this information.
As we mentioned earlier, the whole house repipe job will take between three to five days, depending on the size of the home and the age of the existing plumbing (older piping could take longer to remove). The water to the house will be turned off for a few hours each day while the plumbers are working.
They will use plastic sheets to cover their work areas to prevent any harm to the house and the furnishings. They will make surgical-type cuts into the ceiling and drywall to gain access to the existing pipes. Once the whole house repipes job is completed, they will patch and smooth over the areas they had to cut into. Whether they repaint any areas will be something discussed with you during the estimate. Many plumbers have a third-party painter come in behind them to do this type of work.
There may pipe that needs more extensive work, like a repiping house on a slab requires excavation to gain access to pipes that were laid before they poured the slab. This sometimes requires removing major fixtures, which will be replaced as the job is finished.
Do I Need a Permit to Repipe My House?
There are national codes for plumbing with the goal of standardizing the work performed by plumbers. There are also building codes and regulations for cities, counties, and states, which supersede any national codes.
Before having a whole house repipe job started, check with the local governing office where you are located and check if there are any building and plumbing codes or laws. Experienced plumbers will know the codes and laws, and many will file for any permit for you.
Large plumbing jobs like a whole house repipe job will require a building or plumbing permit before starting the work. Smaller plumbing jobs like changing out faucets or replacing the internal parts of a toilet usually do not, but it is wise to check with the local governing office first. Replacing a water heater or installing a new bathroom will probably require a permit.
Should I Repipe my House With PEX?
Most houses have copper pipes running to the main water line and waste lines, and the whole house repipes jobs are replaced with copper in those areas. From your house to the main lines, they use plastic pipes for branching off to the fixtures inside your home. The whole house repipe with pex plumbing has become a popular choice in recent years for several reasons:
- Flexible piping makes installation easier
- Less expensive
- Won’t corrode or freeze
A drawback is the history of copper pipes is 50 years or longer lifespan. PEX has only been around 30 years, so it does not have a history to compare. To date, though, it is neck and neck with copper when compared.
Does Repiping a House Add Value?
A whole house repipe job won’t directly add extra value to your home like a master bath or an updated kitchen would. However, it will bring it up even with market value, especially in an older house. An older house with original plumbing is a red flag for prospective buyers. While plumbing pipes should have a long lifespan, there really isn’t a way to assign a definitive timetable for a whole house repipe job.
Other than you have a 100-year-old house with original plumbing, how do you know if your home could use a whole house repipe job? We have a list of six indications you should know in your home:
- Aged and Unsafe: Besides the age of your house and its plumbing, the climate and the wear and tear are important factors. Another factor to consider is the type of pipes used in your house. Galvanized steel and lead piping need to be replaced due to their being unsafe. If the pipes in your house clack, clang, or rattle every time water is turned on, a whole house repipe job is needed.
- Leaking Pipes: Replacing leaking pipes is common sense, but if you’re having to repair the same area of pipe repeatedly, a whole house repipe job may be the answer to your plumbing problems.
- Corrosion: If you’ve noticed corroded pipes in your home, discoloring or flaking, indentations, and dents, it is time to consider having your whole house repipe. A corroded pipe will be more likely to burst or leak if it hasn’t already.
- Poor Water Pressure: Several factors can cause low or poor water pressure. The most common is caused by corrosion or sediment buildup. Both block water running through the pipe and unneeded pressure in some areas of piping. A dishwasher, shower, or washing machine have little pressure are indicators that a whole house repipe job could be the answer.
- Discolored Water: If the water in your home comes out brownish, reddish, or yellowish from the spigots, you have major rust and sediment buildup and need a whole house to repipe job. If it is only when running hot water, this would indicate it is the water heater, not the whole house’s plumbing.
- Smell and Taste Bad: If the water tastes bad in your home or has an odor, the plumbing is likely on its last bit of life and a whole house repipe job is needed.
What Causes a Pinhole Leak in a Copper Pipe?
When copper plumbing gets old, it is common for pinhole leaks to happen at an increasing frequency. You may think that the leading cause for this is aging, but don’t be so quick to decide that. Another reason that has been determined by plumbers is the municipal water system has chloramines. If your water heater is getting old, it will start creating particles of corrosion which will begin eating at the pipe’s insides, causing pinhole leaks. Any house with copper piping would benefit from a whole house repipe job to eliminate the problem. If you’ve decided that you need a whole house repipe, get several quotes and compare them. You want to get a plumber that offers a warranty on their work, and the materials used. If you sell your house later, a whole house repipe will only help add to the value.
Is it time for a whole house repipe in Mesquite, TX? Call (214) 624-7186 today!