PEX vs. CPVC vs. Copper

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I'm rehabbing a bathroom on the second floor of my old house in Philadelphia, and I'm running all new supply lines. I'll be tapping into copper in the basement, and I have a wide open chase to get to the second floor. What should I run? Copper is getting awfully expensive these days, and I'm curious about the cpvc and pex. The simplicity really appeals to me. What's the word on the reliability of the plastics? Are they really easier to work with? What about durability? Am I going to have to make sure that all the connections are easily accessible? I'm just curious about general opinions people have and what to watch out for. Thanks,
Andrew
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CPVP is the lease expensive way to go. Plex isn't all that expensive until you start adding fittings. When I relocated our water heater from under the stairs to our utility room I used cpvc. Copper would have cost a fortune. The thing I noticed was that even thoug the water heater was farther away hot water hit the faucets faster. I am sure it is because it didn't have to heat up the copper along the way every time a faucet was turned on. I would reccomend doing the whole bathroom in CPVC. Do NOT do hot in CPVC and cold in PVC. It is not worthe the headaches to mix the two.
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CPVC has a smaller inside diameterthan copper, So water flows through it faster for a given flow rate.
Bob
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replying to Bob F, lifeisadimension wrote:

My understanding is that when the diameter reduces the velocity of the water increases, though the volume decreases. A hose nozzle illustrates this understanding.
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A moron's useless post to a thread that is 7 years old.
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all the HDs and lowes around here sell PEX. Sharkbite fittings, including T s, ball valves and adapters make plumbing very easy. Pex can freeze and tha w without damage.
pex flexes around obstacles extremely easily.
I fixed some frozen copper lines replacing them with PEX. got one bathroom and laundry working for a realtive. have more to do perhaps this weekend.
we accidently reveresed the hot and cold lines to the bathroom, just used t he sharkbites to fix that. Snap snap all done.
I am going to relocate some lines in a crawlspace, install a vent in the fl oor to allow some warm air to enter the crawlspace, and insulate some of th e crawlspace. We can easily relocate the pex to interior heated space, but theres still a drain trap that freezes in the crawl space. so insulating an d heating it might be the better option.
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replying to bud-- , lifeisadimension wrote:

Hey, lighten up. While the reply may or may not still be of interest to the original poster or to you, there are and will continue to be many other people who can benefit from the reply.
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On Tuesday, October 20, 2015 at 9:44:07 AM UTC-4, lifeisadimension wrote:

PEX is awesome, because freezing does noharm to pex. when it melts everything works as before
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I'm running all new supply lines. I have a wide open chase to get to

Plastic pipe is reliable and easy to install. I don't think it is more durable than metal pipe but time will only tell since it a newer product. I do know that they used to use copper in hdyronic systems and failures were frequent. Now plastic is the only material used. If your pipe is buried in slab or otherwise protected the plastic will last. If you pipe is inside a wall and therfore exposed to possible rodent damage then maybe metal pipe is safer.
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Rick Suddes had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-PEX-vs-CPVC-vs-Copper-199672-.htm :
Rick Suddes ------------------------------------- Lawrence wrote:

##-----------------------------------------------## Delivered via http://www.thestuccocompany.com/ Building Construction and Maintenance Forum Web and RSS access to your favorite newsgroup - alt.home.repair - 346849 messages and counting! ##-----------------------------------------------##
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wrote:

My house is 10 years old and is all PEX with a manifold. To my knowledge there has never been a leak. When we did a bath remodel it was simple to work with. I can say PEX is a reliable product.
-- Oren
I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work. Thomas A. Edison
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search a little on this group you'll probably find a few of my old posts on this very topic. I waver back and forth between PEX and copper, reliability is a big question in my mind, the issues with Polybutalene are too real and in my mind PEX MIGHT possibly have the same problems??? I still went with it, it's a snap to install, can be very wasteful when it comes to the tubing, but the tubing is very cheap. Common fittings are available locally and are reasonably inexpensive. Personally I think copper and PEX are a wash when it comes to small jobs, but that's just me.
PEX looks very messy, so if the tubing is exposed it will look dangerous and half-assed to the casual observer - but that's just what it looks like.
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Yeah, everything will be concealed, so it won't be that big a deal. Having nearly set my house on fire several times sweating copper, the snap connections really appeal to me. As long as they're reliable, the cost almost doesn't even matter. The manifolds seem really convenient too. One other thing, since you've been living with PEX for awhile, is there any taste or smell to the water that comes through it? I was wondering if maybe the hot water lines in particular might be noticeable.
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PEX is better no fittings Ts etc buried in walls:)
Run seperate lines for sink, tub, toilet etc.
Better flow, easier service with manifold.
Flushing toilet doesnt effect person showering.
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Wait, now this is interesting. Is this the way it HAS to be run? With a sink, tub and toilet, that would mean 5 lines running to the basement. Is that really the best way to do it? I guess if the tubing is cheap it shouldn't matter. But is this really the way people run PEX? Each fixture is attached separately to the manifold? Thanks,
Andrew
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I have a single 3/4" line from the hot water tank that splits to a 3/4" line to the basement and a 1/2" line to the washing machine. From there the 3/4" line splits to 3 lines - one to the bathroom sink, bathroom shower, kitchen sink. (I have a small house)
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One thing, PEX expands when it gets hot - make sure none of your connections are confined.
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Andrew,

When we built our house a couple of years ago, I chose CPVC for our hot AND cold supplies, for a variety of reasons:
It's inexpensive.
It's readily available just about everywhere, including mom and pop hardware stores. You'll be thankful for that if you run out of supplies near the end of your project, or if you need to make an emergency repair in the future.
It's lightweight. A big plus if you're crawling around in a crawlspace or an attic. Much easier than dragging a large coil of PEX around.
It's highly resistant to acidic or other poor quality water conditions. Copper can sometimes get pinhole leaks.
It only requires a few basic hand tools to install. PEX requires an expensive crimping tool to install the fittings.
It takes very little practice to learn how to make professional quality, leakproof, connections. Copper requires a bit of "skill" and experience to achieve attractive and waterproof joints.
There's no risk of accidently starting a fire since no torch is needed. However, be careful with the solvent fumes in confined spaces.
It's widely accepted by most plumbing codes. So you shouldn't have any inspection problems even with the "old-timers". :)
The only "gotchas" you may want to be careful of are:
CPVC expands in length with temperature, so try not to make long continuous runs over 20' or so. Add a bend or two in long runs to allow some expansion.
CPVC (and most plastics) don't hold up to "stress" applications very well. So avoid CPVC valves and use the appropriate brass drop-ear elbows at all your fixtures. The best ones have a gasket between the brass and CPVC parts of the fitting to accomodate the different expansion rates. Expensive (about $5), but worth it.
DO NOT use a female threaded adapter made of CPVC. They're against code, and I know from personal experience they will crack. If you need to adapt to another pipe, only use MALE threaded CPVC adapters (the female adapter would be on the copper, Galvanized, or whatever). Or better yet, use an adapter made specifically for the purpose.
Anthony
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I'll take copper over PEX any day. PEX is along the same lines as all the disposable products that are dominating the market. It's just another low cost item to make somebody more Money. It's probably a very small factor in the price of a house. PRICE, TIME, QUALITY any two but not all three. Best not to feed the mice use copper.
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These are all great comments. I'm curious about this "feeding the mice" that you mention (and others allude to). Has anyone really seen mice eat through PVC? Incidentally, I took a pass by Home Depot the other day and noticed that they don't even sell PEX. I guess I'd have to go to a plumbing supply place?
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