PVC Piping Problems San Diego Homeowners Should Know About
When PVC (polyvinyl chloride) first emerged as a pipe material option in the 1960s, it was considered the great alternative to copper. San Diego plumbing contractors, home and business owners alike praised its durability, affordability, and easy installation, particularly since copper had a propensity to get pitted. At that time, plastic usage was all the rage for every conceivable type of household product. Now, new stories are emerging of some complications with PVC (as well as CPVC, chlorinated polyvinyl chloride). Particularly if you are considering a whole house re-piping, you should be aware of these PVC piping problems.
- Cold weather affects it: Though rare, we have recently had overnight temperatures of 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Water expands when it is frozen, so if water should freeze up inside of a C/PVC pipe, it can make the pipe burst. For this reason, it is recommended that C/PVC pipes be placed 12 to 24 inches below ground.
- Sun exposure deteriorates it: It is also not recommended that C/PVC be placed outside where the sun can directly hit it. This is because the ultraviolet rays can weaken the material, making it susceptible to cracking and breakage. At the very least, the piping should have a protective opaque covering to protect it from the ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Anyone in southern California who has had a car windshield bubble up on them knows well the invisible power of the sun’s rays.
- Rocky soil can damage it: San Diegans are well aware that our land’s soil is rocky and sandy. Particularly with our frequent earthquakes and tremors, the debris underground can grind against the pipes, damaging and breaking them.
- Reduced warranty: Though it originally boasted a 25-year warranty, the manufacturer of C/PVC now only offers a 10-year warranty. Take this as a red flag for the overall longevity of the PVC. Keep in mind that this warranty covers the cost of the pipes, and not the cost of any resulting water damage.
- Unsafe for the environment: C/PVC pipes are not recyclable. Plus, these pipes are cemented together using toxic solvents, which can crack and seep into the environment. The connections are also more prone to breakage than seamless piping like PEX. In addition, primers must be used before the solvents are applied, and because primers soften the PVC pipe, too much primer can damage the piping.
Perry Plumbing Heating & Air Will Make Sure Your San Diego Home Has Efficient Pipes
If your home has PVC or CPVC piping, and you are concerned, we at Perry Plumbing Heating & Air can perform a complete once-over of your home’s piping situation, and test for any weak spots or breakage points. We can also suggest improved piping solutions that can save you money and improve your home’s efficiency. Call us at 619-472-2112, and check out our website at www.perryplumbing.com. You can even use our helpful coupons to save even more money. Read our favorable 5-Star Google Plus and Yelp reviews. In 2015, the Better Business Bureau named us a 2015 Torch Award Finalist for business ethics. We also recently won the National Contractor of the Year award from Contractor Magazine and the Plumbing Heating cooling Contractors Association, both for 2015.