plastic pushfit plumbing reliability

I am just redoing my shower room. I will be having plumbing for both
shower and sink behind a false wall with no access, as this will be
tiled over.
I am ok with doing traditional solder plumbing, but know it will be
much faster if I use push fit fittings. However I am concerned at
having these in an inaccessible place in case of a failure.
What does the group think?
Reply to
Tim Decker
If you are OK with one method and not OK with another method I suggest you employ the method you are OK with.
As for plastic push fit plumbing reliability I don't believe there is a reliability issue for competently made joints.
Jim A
Reply to
Jim Alexander
If they're done properly (eg, not using a hacksaw to chop the pipe...) they should be completely reliable but I have to say that personally I'd feel happier with soldered fittings behind a false wall. But soldered fittings can fail too if not done properly (eg from flux corrosion)
If you google this group you'll find a wealth of info on this (though a lot of it relates to hacksaw abuse by a certain member of this group...)
David
Reply to
Lobster
In message , Jim Alexander wrote
I the building in which I work they seem to have problems with a push fit leaking around once every nine moths or so. This is after a couple failures after first occupying the new building and the maintenance department spending a weekend double checking all accessible connections. There are probably thousands of such connections in the building so the probability of failure is still quite small and there is no guarantee that the joints were made in a competent way in the first place.
Reply to
Alan
In article , Tim Decker writes
My personal preference would be to use a single length of plastic pipe jointed directly at the shower valve with a compression fitting, that way you only have one possible point of leak.
If you are talking about using copper pipe with plastic pushfit fittings, I wouldn't, I always use a joint that has the same or greater strength that the pipe to be joined.
Reply to
fred
I have no personal experience of using push fits - I have only used solder and compression joints - but a relative who runs a plumbing/ electrical contractors business told me recently that he has had bad experiences with JG Speedfit connectors on a block of flats he plumbed. He was sure that they were done in accordance with the instructions - he did some himself, others were done by trusted employees. The call-back rate for leaks was unnacceptable to both the occupiers and himself. He said he will never use JG Speedfit again, and is wary of all push-fits now, despite the speed (and therefore cost) advantages.
CRB
Reply to
crb
Why would a plastic pushfit fitting be any more reliable when fitted to a plastic pipe than a copper one? I'd have thought that intuitiuvely it would be the reverse.
Incidentally, as a separate issue in general do people consider copper pushfits to be any better than plastic, or is the difference just cosmetic?
David
Reply to
Lobster
I've used plastic pipe for showers etc even in "inaccessible"[1] locations. I'd make the pipe runs continuous with no joins from somewhere accessible to the shower fittings, and pressure test it all before covering over and tiling.
You might like to look at
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nothing's inaccessible if you have a large enough hammer :-)
Reply to
John Stumbles
In article , Lobster writes
Take 2 lengths of copper pipe & join in the middle with a plastic pushfit coupling, then apply stress to the length by bending. The plastic joint will see all the stress and will ultimately leak or break. Do the same with plastic pipe and the bending stress will be distributed throughout the pipe and joint so it is less likely to fail.
I'm not saying people go about bending and stressing joints intentionally but I think it's better practice to have a joint that is matched in strength to the material it is joining.
Never used them myself, if I'm joining copper it will be by soldering.
Reply to
fred
Personally I'm not that keen on Speedfit except where the ability to dismount the coupling is useful because I'm not sure of the impact of not using the optional collect clips or (now) the pipe support sleeves with secondary O rings. In a sense if they are not needed why are they included in the range? But I would also expect any plumber choosing to use Speedfit over Hep (say) to also have a view on collet clip (and now secondary o-ring) usage. Without collet clips there is definately more lateral pipe movement possible with Speedfit than with Hep. Pex pipe is also stiffer than Polyb. Theoretically both these reasons could increase the possibility of distortion on the O ring - but only where that results from inadequate clipping.
Where there is more than one leak in a single installation there must be a systemic reason. I would have expected a competent plumber to have identified what the systemic reason was when inspected on call-back. I would never exclude a product quality control issue but it wouldn't be my first suspicion.
Jim A
Reply to
Jim Alexander
On Sat, 8 Dec 2007 02:47:39 -0800 (PST)
I've used Polyplumb, Speedfit and Hep2O without any problems, but I would not fit a joint where it could not be serviced under any circumstances, not even with copper (OK, maybe a soldered bend just before a wall exit.) I would never put a push-fit or compression where I couldn't service it.
The keys, I think, with the plastic systems is:
1) the pressure test to 6 bar - this sets the stainless steel teeth into the pipe walls and checks that the o-ring is seated. But for that you need a pressure test pump (=C2=A390) ;)
2) a clean 90 degree cut - on an insertion mark. So you need the proper cutter. I re-mark the insertion mark with a CD pen, for EVERY joint.
3) Careful, straight insertion, to the marked depth.
4) The proper, recommended, insert.
I'm not sure copper is as good as lead either, Doc. But on second thoughts: carved elm pipes have been used for centuries, so maybe that's the way to go.
R.
Reply to
TheOldFellow
The good thing about plastic pipe is that, as it comes in 25m rolls and can be curved, with careful design, you shouldn't need to put any fittings in inaccessible positions. I've done a fair bit of my house in it without any problems over several years. However, I would recommend: (1) use Speedfit Super Seal inserts. They are superior to the DIY shed look-alikes. (2) Buy a proper plastic pipe cutter. The preparation of the ends is vital and they can fail if you don't do it properly. (3) Make sure that the ends are fully pushed home into the fitting and that the pipe is not under tension when fitted.
Colin Bignell
Reply to
nightjar
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's very useful. I was looking at the installation for the solid wall just now, and trying to work out what happened to the wooden plate - was it skimmed over or something...? Then I realised that presumably it's only a template and is removed once the plaster is set, right? Might be worth clarifying in the wiki wotsit?!
David
Reply to
Lobster
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One other point - to which I'd like to know the answer myself... in the hollow-wall fitting, where you have the pipework protruding from the tiles, what is the preferred method of sealing to prevent water getting through - do you fill the space around the pipework with sealant so it's effectively watertight before the bezels are fitted? Or are you meant to seal the bezels to the wall?
David
(whose ensuite shower valve has been cloaked by a flap of polythene for several years now waiting for a round tuit...)
Reply to
Lobster

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