In all honesty, there isn’t a sure-fire way to know exactly how long your plumbing pipes will last. It depends on a variety of factors such as age, construction methods, and even materials used. If you moved into an older home, chances are your pipes will also be old, depending on when the home was built, or if the pipes have been replaced over the years. So, when it comes to the lifespan of new piping – there are some things that you need to take into consideration.
There has always been a variety of materials used in the construction of commercial and residential plumbing. Some materials, such as lead, should no longer be used. This is because of the residual toxicity that lead leaves behind in your drinking water. Others should be avoided due to the quality of the materials such as Polybutylene. The materials used for your new plumbing pipes will have an impact on its lifespan.
Copper piping is widespread throughout the US and lasts on average around 75 years. Brass piping, while less popular than copper, lasts just a little longer. It has an average lifespan of around 90 years. Both Cast iron and galvanized steel also last around 90 years, but they are more susceptible to rust. This brings down the average lifespan for both metals.
All metals used for plumbing pipes have a significant downside. This downside can make them less appealing to use as materials for new pipes, especially for health-conscious homes. Metal pipes are likely to leave behind residual traces of metal in your drinking water and consuming too many metal traces may have a negative impact on your health.
There is an alternative option to be found in Polyvinyl Chloride piping also known as PVC pipes. It has a much shorter lifespan than metal pipes. It averages around 30 years, which is less than half of the average lifespan of metal plumbing pipes. While PVC piping isn’t as durable as its metal counterparts, it’s preferred by many homeowners. There’s also almost no chance of you consuming heavy metals from your drinking water with PVC plumbing pipes.
It’s easier to guess the average lifespan of your plumbing pipes if you know exactly when they were installed or replaced. Without these details, you may find yourself calling in a plumber for your pipes a lot more frequently than you thought.
Regular preventative maintenance plays a significant part in prolonging the lifespan of your pipes. Another thing to consider is if you’re living in an area with hard water. Hard water will cause limescale build-up in your plumbing pipes, which will lead to corrosion of your pipes. The installation of a home water treatment system can help prevent limescale build-up. It also adds an extra layer of protection for your new pipes. Even if your pipes look brand new, limescale build-up will aid in the corrosion of your pipes.
It’s hard to say exactly how long new plumbing pipes will last especially if you don’t know what materials were used or if they have received regular preventative maintenance. It may also be hard for you to decide on plumbing pipe repair or replacement if you bought a pre-built home.
Repairing your existing pipes means taking the chance that the average lifespan isn’t as long as you’d like it to be. With proper maintenance and the right materials, pipe replacement can almost guarantee the approximate average lifespan of your new piping.
If you’re still unsure, reach out to your local plumbing experts at Art, Plumbing, Air Conditioning & Electric. Speaking with a professional plumber will help you make the decision best suited to your specific needs and budget. For reliable service you can count on, call us today at 1-800-475-1504!
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