Replacing an entire home’s plumbing isn’t something that crosses a homeowner’s mind often. However, if you have an older home and have some worries about the operation of your pipes, then you have a valid reason to consider replacing the entire system. Unfortunately, plumbing systems don’t last forever – a long time, yes, but not forever. Over time, pipes corrode, rust and decay eventually giving way to leaks.
In the worst cases, you could end up with water or raw sewage flooding your home causing thousands of dollars in damage. So, how can you avoid this disaster from happening in your home? There are a few telltale signs that you should keep an eye out for that will let you know when it’s time to replace your home’s plumbing.
Are Your Pipes Past Their Prime?
If you live in an older home, it is particularly important to pay attention to your pipes. The first thing that you need to know about your system is what material your pipes are made of. This will help you to determine, or at least make an educated guess, as to how long your pipes will last. If you don’t know (and it’s not likely that you would), you can get the information from your home inspection report, or you can simply call a plumber to come inspect your system.
Now, there are two types of pipes that will be servicing your home, and those are supply pipes and drain lines. Supply pipes bring water into your home and remain under constant pressure. These are most likely to cause damage to your home should they decay and burst. Often, these pipes are made of copper, which can last 70 to 80 years, galvanized steel, which can last 80 to 100 years, or brass, which can also last 80 to 100 years.
Then, you have your drain lines. These expel water and waste from your home. Drain pipes are often made of either PVC pipes, which last 24 to 40 years, or cast iron, which last 80 to 100 years. Of course, the longevity estimates of all of these are simply projections, as many different things can factor into the reduction of a pipe’s lifespan including, high water pressure stress, hard water deposits, and lack of regular maintenance.
Are Your Pipes Corroding?
If, when you look at the exposed pipes in and around your home, you see signs of corrosion, it is time to call your plumber. Signs of corrosion include: stains, discoloration, flaking, dimpling or pimples. All of these are sure signs that it’s time to replace your plumbing system.
Are Your Pipes Leaking?
No matter how old your home may be, if your pipes are leaking, that’s not a good sign. In fact, just one, small leak could be a sign that it’s time to replace your entire plumbing system. It might seem drastic to jump to that conclusion, but think about it. All of the pipes in your home were probably installed at the same time and therefore have all aged at the same rate under the same pressures. So, if one pipe is starting to give way, then it might not be long before they all do.
Are You Noticing Brown or Yellow Water?
No one wants to see discolored water when they turn their faucets on. It’s just gross, but more than the superficial factor, it’s a sign that something’s wrong. Brown or yellow water means that your water is mixing with rust. While this could be coming from a rusty water heater tank, it could also be a sign that your pipes have rusted and need to be replaced.
Do You Have Lead or Polybutylene Pipes?
If your home contains pipes made of either of these materials, in any way, regardless of age, you need to replace your system. Lead is incredible toxic if consumed, and if you have lead pipes, you might have lead in your water. There’s also polybutylene piping. While not toxic, these pipes are prone to easy breakage, as they weren’t made from quality materials.
If you’re seeking advice about whether or not it’s time to replace your home’s plumbing, contact your preferred Tritan Plumbing location and schedule a consultation. They’ll be sure to guide you in the right direction and make sure that you and your family don’t find yourselves in a sticky situation.