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Problems with Polybutylene Plumbing

December 02, 2010

The Pipe of the Future?

Polybutylene Plumbing was once called "The Pipe of the Future".  We now know how wrong that statement really is.

Polybutylene tubing was developed in 1970 as a replacement to traditional copper piping.  There were many advantages including easier installation and lower costs, however in the 1980's homes and business that utilized this new grey tubing began to report leaks.  Upon further inspection it was discovered that the inside of the tubing was beginning to break down and flake away even though the exterior of the pipe looked fine.  There is a leak just waiting to happen inside every home that utilizes this type of plumbing.

The Bad News

Unfortunately from 1978 to 1995 there were up to ten million homes and businesses that were built or retrofitted with poly tubing.  This type of plumbing has commonly been found in homes across Arizona and from the southwest to the southeast of the United States.

Not every structure that uses Polybutylene tubing leaks, however the material is very susceptible to breakdown depending upon the age of your pipes, the amount of  chlorine and other chemicals in your water.

In some cases home insurance policies have been cancelled because of the extensive damages that are possible with poly tubing.

What do I do now?

Replacement of Poly tubing is not simple but a trained professional can complete the job for you and alleviate the risks associated with your current plumbing system. 

Resolving this troubling problem includes replacing all of your old Poly tubing with either new copper pipes or a newly standardized product called PEX.

Today, a modern Arizona homes today utilizes PEX or Cross-linked polyethylene because it has overcome all the problems and dangers of Poly tubing and is much easier to install especially for remodeling projects.

Contact a Plumbing Company that can walk you through the process and costs involved with replacement process.  Whitton Plumbing is ready to help you with your re-piping needs.  We offer free estimates and always charge by the job.

For more information about re-piping contact Whitton.

Valley Wide: (480) 291-1111
Tucson: (520) 505-3236
Whether it's sinks, toilets, showers, faucets, water heaters, pipes or drains that need cleaning, repairs or installation, we've got you covered.