Better for Plumbing: Copper or PEX?
When a water pipe springs a leak, there are two choices, copper and PEX or polyethylene cross-linked tubing, for a permanent solution. Each has virtues and drawbacks that suit certain situations better than others.
The experts at AAA Service can assess the situation and recommend the best material for the job and ensure that it operates to its highest potential.
The highlights of copper pipes:
- Heat Resistance
A huge advantage of copper in just about any setting is its endurance. Copper piping is typically expected to last 50 years but a lifespan of a century isn’t out of the question.
Certainly, the temperatures normally used for hot water lines can be easily handled by PEX, but if there’s a possibility of exposure to another high heat source, copper can handle it.
Copper’s rigidity can prove to be a bonus if a line has to span any significant stretch without additional support. PEX is not well-suited to these situations.
A Thing of Beauty
While it may not occur often, there are circumstances when lines are exposed as a matter of design. Brought to a high polish, copper offers a solution that’s both practical and aesthetically appealing.
The highlights of PEX pipes:
- Inexpensive Material
- Inexpensive Installation
On average, PEX piping is 25% cheaper than copper or more. If price takes priority over lifespan, PEX is the way to go.
With compression rings instead of solder and a propane torch as the means of joining together PEX lines, time and labor costs are reduced. PEX tubing can also be cut much quicker than copper.
PEX really comes through when working with existing structures. Since it’s bendable, PEX can twist and turn its way through passages copper can’t accommodate without having to remove wall sections.
Winters in Denver can be pretty fierce, and frozen water pipes are a real threat. PEX piping is capable of expanding up to eight times its width without rupturing. Copper doesn’t come close. PEX is perfect if this risk exists.
Making the Right Match
With this brief guide as a starting point, now’s the time to let our professionals match the best material to the job for a lasting solution before things get out of hand.
One call to AAA Service at (303) 622-3449 will have our technicians getting control of the situation fast.