Q: Can you please tell me if PEX piping is as good as copper? My contractor has already installed it without my notification in the shower, and he will probably do so in the rest of the bathroom. As a side note -in case it helps in your response -I live in a concrete highrise.
A: PEX piping is often used in residential water plumbing because of its flexibility. It can be bent into a wide-radius turn if space permits, or by using an elbow joint; PVC, CPVC and copper all require elbow joints. The cost of material can also be approximately 25 per cent of alternatives, and installation is much less labour intensive.
Cross-linked polyethylene, commonly abbreviated PEX or XLPE, is a form of polyethylene with cross-links. It is formed into tubing, and is used predominantly in hydronic radiant heating systems, domestic water piping and insulation for high tension (high voltage) electrical cables. It is also used for natural gas and offshore oil applications, chemical transportation, and transportation of sewage and slurries. Recently, it has become a viable alternative to polyvinyl chloride (PVC), chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC) or copper pipe for use as residential water pipes.
PEX tubing is widely used to replace copper in plumbing applications. Typically, red PEX tubing is used for hot water, while blue PEX tubing is used for cold water.
How your contractor is using it is fully acceptable.
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