Having clean and safe water is very important for any new or existing home. Efficient water pressure is also important for showering, laundry, and most other water flow from faucets. In order to ensure your home has clean water and decent water pressure, your water will be delivered by an underground pipe.
These pipes are often made of copper, steel, PVC, or galvanized metal. However, more and more homes today are choosing to use PEX piping, also known as cross-linked polyethylene pipes, for radiant heating systems, internal and external pipework systems, and domestic water systems.
Unlike other materials, PEX piping has three major advantages including durability, fewer joints needed, and resistance to freezing. Since it is similar in cost to other more standard materials, more modern construction companies and homeowners are choosing to invest in PEX over more commonly available or regularly used materials instead.
High Levels of Durability
PEX piping is extremely durable when compared to other materials, including copper and PVC. Even small damages in copper or PVC pipes caused by transport or installation mishaps can become a major nuisance for newly installed systems. PEX pipes on the other hand are extremely durable and can handle rougher handling than a variety of other materials.
When transported and installed, you won’t need to worry as much about minor damages happening and causing unexpected issues later on. This makes PEX a good choice for difficult installations or areas where delivery logistics can be a bit of a nightmare such as off-grid or backwoods homes, mountain lodges, and more.
Fewer Joints Needed
PEX pipes are an outstanding choice for areas that need multiple joints to get from point A to point B. Due to the flexibility of PEX pipes, you can gently angle and curve the pipes instead of having to use joints. It’s not uncommon for standard copper or PVC piping to need dozens of joints during a new installation.
Being able to flex the pipe instead of using joints for right angle bends reduces the amount of areas where leaks can happen due to improper joining. This also makes PEX a great choice for installing both vertically and horizontally in floors, walls, and underground.
Resistant to Freezing
In areas where freezing is common, PEX pipe is the best choice due to its resistance to freezing. When copper and metal pipes get extremely cold and prevent proper water flow, and PVC pipes can crack due to the expansion and shrinkage of the water inside and the ground around them, PEX can flex and remain resilient to these seasonal changes.
While PEX will freeze just the same as other pipes in the same conditions, it is much more resistant to bursting. The pipe itself will be able to flex and expand instead of crack or completely burst the same as copper or PVC. In northern areas, or areas that get a seasonal hard freeze, PEX is the most cost effective piping to consider.