Stainless steel and copper plumbing.

We are planning on having a new boiler fitted and have had several guys come
round to give a quote. The problem is that 30 years ago when my dad put the
pipe work in, there was a shortage of copper pipe but he had a fair amount
of stainless steel pipe available. The pipe work between the boiler and the
radiators is therefore a mixture of copper and stainless steel.
We have had 3 quotes for replacing the boiler. The first guy didn't mention
the stainless steel at all, but the second 2 (one local plumber and one from
power gen) said the stainless steel was a problem and should be replaced. In
fact they both refused to quote for the job unless all the stainless steel
was replaced with copper, saying that the system would be prone to leaks
unless that was done, so they would be unable to guarantee the work. The
local plumber seemed particularly concerned about the stainless steel with
regards to the power flush he wanted to do.
However, when I spoke to the guy down at the local plumbing supply shop, who
seemed to know what he was talking about, he said that he couldn't see a
problem and there was no need to replace the stainless steel. And indeed, it
has been fine for the past 30 years or so.
If the stainless steel needs to be replaced, then I will do it myself, but
it's a big job with much of the pipe work buried in walls and under floors,
so I don't want to do it if it isn't necessary.
Would anyone care to venture an opinion ?
Thanks
Dave
Reply to
Dave
Many still have this pipework and have no problems with it.
Mine is now all copper but only because I have refitted kitchen and bathroom and have removed water tanks and use a combi boiler. I never had any problems with the stainless pipe whilst it was in place
Can't see a problem
Tony
Reply to
TMC
The stainless is not common (I have seen it only a couple of times before). It should not be used with push fit plumbing. Compression joints are the only way to make connections to it.
I would expect it to be as serviceable as the same age of copper pipe. I.e. if it's not already leaking then it'll be just fine even with a sealed system. Only the compression might leak a little under increased pressure.
When working with larger companies there is a lot of backside fire proofing.
Reply to
Ed Sirett
On 21 Nov,
Can't see any probs with stainless, but around that time (War in Katanga? pushing up copper prices) there was some systems put in with a plated steel pipe. These were poor from the start, and could be confused with stainless. I doubt if any have not been replaced by now, but may be a reason why some outfits want to replace non copper pipes.
Reply to
<me9
Just added some copper pipe to my DHW system (new cylinder) and all the house pipework is stainless - from the stopcock. Checked with magnet
Geo
Reply to
Geo
How do you "check for stainless" with a magnet? If the magnet sticks it is /not/ stainless, if it doesn't then it might be stainless, or copper, or ....
Reply to
Martin Bonner
Magnet does not attract at all. Silver colour - *much" harder than copper - junior hack saw struggles... probably not titanium.
Geo
Reply to
Geo

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