Plumbing: Pipes and Pipe Fittings: PEX


Pipe types: Some systems offer the option of red tubing for hot water and blue tubing for cold water.

PEX (cross-linked polyethylene) plumbing systems are relatively new players in the world of plumbing, but are rapidly gaining acceptance by plumbers, homeowners and building code officials.

These systems consist of flexible tubing that's joined to specially designed fittings by way of compression fittings or a crimping tool. The tubing itself -- which can be used for hot and cold water lines as well as in-the-floor radiant heating systems -- is flexible, can be installed in long lengths with fewer joints, is freeze- break resistant and is relatively easy to install. Continuous "home run" lengths can be run from a central manifold to individual fixtures to further minimize the number of joints and connections.

It can't be used for outdoor, above-ground applications, its use hasn't been okayed in all jurisdictions and , though it's expected to last as long as copper, some will argue it hasn't with stood the test of time. There are several systems available; the one shown employs clamps and a crimping tool.

Left: Pipe types: Some systems offer the option of red tubing for hot water and blue tubing for cold water.


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Manifold: The manifold allows for the installation of home runs from a central source to individual fixtures.

Fittings: A wide variety of male and female connectors, shutoff valves and elbows makes it easy to make connections to standard faucets and fixtures.

Elbow bracket: Helps ease the tubing around sharp corners.

Crimping tool: The crimping tool compresses the specially designed ring around the tubing and fittings.

1. Select the correct size clamp and slip it over the tubing. 2. Slide the fitting into the tubing until it's fully seated.  3. Secure the clamp with the special crimping tool.

1. Select the correct size clamp and slip it over the tubing.

 

2. Slide the fitting into the tubing until it's fully seated. 3. Secure the clamp with the special crimping tool.

Recommended Reading

Plumbing a House (For Pros by Pros)

Plumbing a House (For Pros by Pros)

This is more for people building a house than those remodeling one, but its no-nonsense, in-depth explanations and marvelously clear illustrations make it a worthwhile reference for anyone facing an expedition into the crazy world of domestic plumbing. Like any really good book, it broaches some controversy: Hemp apparently doesn't go along with the idea that fluoridated water is likely to bond with elements of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipes and pose a health risk. But he isn't going to tell you what to do, merely how to do whatever it's you want to do. He mentions the controversy, but he describes in some detail several kinds of pipes for every application. Showing keen appreciation of where real power in the construction universe lies, he notes that local governing bodies are the ultimate arbiters of plumbing morality, so check with them before proceeding. Creating your own plumbing system is a daunting task. Those who are game will want to have Hemp, or at least his book, at their side.

Master plumber Peter Hemp explains in step-by-step sequence how to create (for both new and remodeled homes) plumbing systems that function efficiently and withstand the rigors of time. For both homeowners and professionals, he shows how to design, size, and install pipes using a variety of standard materials and tools. “No-nonsense, in-depth explanations and marvelously clear illustrations.”

Topics include: remodel plumbing, rigid copper tube, conduction pipe, combo fitting, closet elbow, vent tee, oval pipe, sanitary tee, remodel work, lavatory vent, roof mastic, fixture units, starter plate, branch inlet, purple primer, snap cutter, building drain, closet bend, toilet vent, storm collar, combination wye, closet flange, repair coupling, vent connector, trap arm

Reviews:

Best Book on Plumbing Out There: There is "book larn'in" and then there's "know how" and thoroughly reading this guide will get you as close as you can get to the latter without actually going out and spending a few months on the job with a master plumber. In fact, I would say that's the dominant "feel" of this guide - that the reader is tagging along as Peter masterfully plys his trade, all the while explaining with great care the hows and whys of what he is doing.

This book is unlike other plumbing books in that it doesn't try to balance the pros and cons of all the plumbing products available out there. Peter tells you which ones he likes, which ones he doesn't, and the reasons why, based on his experience. It is his explanations of his reasons that enlighten the reader and help him in making his own purchasing decisions.

One word of warning - there may be easier books to read than this one, especially for the novice. I often found myself having to read passages two or three times to figure out exactly what he was getting at. In fact I know I have read most of the book at least twice, but the effort was always worth it when I finally figured out what he meant. And I can honestly say reading it was never dull or repetitious - there is something to be gleaned from each paragraph.

I guess the book is getting a little old, as one reviewer noted, but most of the products he talks about are still widely used in my part of the country. I even agree with him on the advantages (primarily accoustics) of cast iron drain pipe in certain applications.

This book, along with its companion "Installing and Repairing Plumbing Fixtures" are a must read for anyone who wants to know what's what in the plumbing trade.

A great learning tool: This book fits perfectly into a series called for Pro's by Pro's.

The effort and time that it takes to become a proficient plumber only makes sense if you are planning to use that skill to make cents/money.

It turns out that much of good plumbing depends on planning and technique; both improve with experience. There is a learning curve that can't be avoided.

The casual "Do-it-yourself-er" will not find this a magic plumber's cookbook.

What this guide does is give an excellent overview of theory and suggestions on how to work with legacy materials. It's a great way to begin to understand how a plumber works. The real learning happens on the job.

The more you plumb - the better the plumber you will become.

So who would get the most out of this guide?

a skilled handyman
a plumbers apprentice
small contractors
individuals who plan to remodel a lot of houses

Some reviewers have suggested that this guide is diminished because it omits a discussion of PEX. Those reviewers were also too lazy to have googled "PEX installation."

This book is the best of it's kind out there but definitely has a targeted audience.

The Plumber's Troubleshooting Guide

The Plumber's Troubleshooting Guide

Book Description

  • Shows how to save time, energy, and money when servicing residential or commerical plumbing systems and fixtures.
  • Both novice and experienced plumbers will find a wealth of solutions to everyday--and uncommon--plumbing problems.
  • Covers proper practices and procedures of residential, commercial, and industrial plumbing for apprentice plumbers, do-it-yourself homeowners, and even veteran plumbers.
  • Includes numerous photographs, line drawings, and charts to illustrate the easiest, most effective ways to troubleshoot a wide range of plumbing problems.
  • Covers proper practices and procedures of residential, commercial, and industrial plumbing for apprentice plumbers, do-it-yourself homeowners, and even veteran plumbers.
  • Plumbing Troubleshooting Techniques That Save Time and Money. Say goodbye to time-consuming trial and error methods, extra work, and unnecessary fixture replacements. In The Plumber's Troubleshooting Guide Master Plumber R. Dodge Woodson show you how to develop finely-tuned troubleshooting skills for all types of residential and commercial plumbing fixtures and systems. In a clear, easy-to-understand style, he advises you on how to go beyond normal causes to uncover often overlooked reasons for problems and malfunctions in: toilets and urinals; sinks; bathtubs; faucets and valves; spas and whirlpools; water distribution systems; draining and vent systems; specialty fixtures; well and water treatment systems; septic systems; waste-water pumps; appliances.

Topics covered include:

distributer tube, adjustable control head, bottom gravel support bed, supply spud, troubleshooting sinks, bubbler valve, mineral tank, water conditioning equipment, polished chromium plated, plumbing career, elongated rim, closet auger, many plumbers, flush holes, iron filter, building drain, float rod, water distribution pipe, flush tank, pump that will, jet assembly, experienced plumbers, water treatment equipment, service sink, tank ball

Plumber's Quick-Reference Manual: Tables, Charts, and Calculations

Book Description

Topics covered include:

plumbing math, local code officer, combination wye, clinical sinks, waste receptor, sidewall vents, bathing unit, water service pipe, laundry hookup, sanitary drainage system, local vent, eighth bend, circuit vents, building drain, water distribution pipe, bedpan washers, indirect waste, flex connectors, wet vents, branch vents, rain leaders, waste opening, privacy stall, soil stack, shower base

Plumber's Field Manual

Book Description

Go-anywhere guide bursting with 100s of INSTANT PLUMBING SOLUTIONS. Next time you're out in the field, don't let tough plumbing problems slow you down and eat away at your productivity and profits. Simply reach into your toolbox for Plumber's Field Manual, by master plumber R. Dodge Woodson, and get instant solutions for planning any plumbing job. . .performing hassle-free installations. . . maintaining, troubleshooting and repairing all kinds of systems. . .and much more. This lightweight, fully portable plumber's problem solver packs a wealth of get-it-done data into easy access tables charts, graphs, diagrams, checklists and outlines to give you lightning-fast answers on: Water distribution systems; Drain-waste-and-vent systems; Faucets; Fixtures; Water heaters; Hot water heating systems; Well systems; Septic systems; Remodeling work; Clogged drains; Material selection; Piping size; Plumbing appliances; And much more! repairing a ...

Topics covered include:

pipe support intervals, multipiece faucets, main water distribution pipe, electric drain cleaner, tub waste, handicap fixtures, fixture units, apply pipe dope, local code officer, bathing unit, water service pipe, water distribution pipes, branch fitting, combination wye, saddle valve, faucet seats, septic system design, sidewall vents, potable water pipe, sanitary drainage system, circuit vents, laundry hookup, rubber couplings, many plumbers, potable water use

Plastic Piping Handbook

Plastic Piping Handbook

Book Description

All-the-answers guide to plastic piping...
Written by expert David Willoughby, a 20-year veteran in the field, Plastic Piping Handbook is a one-of-a-kind, comprehensive guide to the durable, economical piping solution used today in 90 % of low-pressure liquid and natural gas installations. You get the facts you need on a full range of vital topics, from pipe selection to pipeline purging and drying, to leak detection. This incomparable resource features codes and specs for gas and water transmission, inspection and testing procedures, and provides you with plenty of charts, data sheets, and tables. You’ll find at your fingertips hundreds of pages of clear, practical guidance to help you:

* Design systems for municipal, industrial, commercial, residential, and field use
* Follow step-by-step procedures for aboveground and buried pipe design
* Choose and apply pipes, control valves, and regulators
* Adhere to codes and standards
* Install, inspect and test pipelines
* More!

From the Back Cover
FEATURING NEW INSPECTION, TEST, AND LEAK DETECTION PROCEDURES, CODES, AND STANDARDS USED IN NATURAL GAS AND WATER UTILITIES

Written by expert David Willoughby, a 20-year veteran in the field, PLASTIC PIPING HANDBOOK is a one-of-a-kind comprehensive guide to the durable, economical piping solution used today in 90 % of low-pressure liquid and natural gas installations. Inside you'll find hundreds of pages of clear, practical guidance to help you:

* Apply plastic piping for greater reliability, durability, and economy in gas and liquid systems
* Design systems for municipal, industrial, commercial, residential, and field use
* Find solutions quickly with easy-to-read charts, tables, and diagrams
* Exploit hydraulic and engineering principles, and plastic pipe characteristics, for best performance
* Follow step-by-step procedures for aboveground and buried pipe design
* Choose and apply pipes, control valves, and regulators
* Adhere to codes and standards
* Handle construction operations
* Install pipelines
* Inspect and test
* Purge and dry plastic piping
* Detect leaks
* Maximize long-term and short-term economic advantages

The reference of the decade on a subject too long neglected, this indispensable handbook is finally here to make work flow more smoothly in your engineering or construction office or site.

Recommended Products

PEX 14" Combo Crimp Tool

  • PART# 18030-14"COMBO CRIMPER 3/8-1/2-3/4"PEX
  • 14"COMBO CRIMPER 3/8-1/2-3/4"PEX
  • ALWAYS GAUGE CRIMP FITTINGS
  • COMPLETE HOW-TO-USE INSTRUCTIONS PROVIDED

Now you can save yourself an expensive call to the plumber - The BEST-PEX plumbing is a complete do-it-yourself PEX tubing system for home building or remodeling. Tools, tubing and accessories are available in 3/8", 1/2", 3/4" and I" ID sizes. Download our easy to understand installation guide and get started today.

Review: Just began using this item for 1/2" PEX. I had to calibrate it out of the box, but that was simple. I had just one ring during my install that didn't 'feel' right when I crimped it and sure enough that was the only leaker I had. In other words, it's easy to get a feel for good/bad crimps with this easy to use tool once calibrated. Only complaint w/ the package is you get a "go" gauge, but not a "no-go" gauge like some other packages. It's 14" length can get you into trouble (but nice for the leverage it creates). I couldn't open up the tool wide enough when crimping a ring for a pedestal sink that was near the wall corner. Plan ahead and you can avoid this inconvenience.

PEX 1/2 & 3/4 Crimp Tool

PEX 1/2" and 3/4" Crimp Tool

  • PART# 18026-1/2" X 3/4" CRIMPING TOOL
  • 1/2" X 3/4" CRIMPING TOOL
  • ALWAYS GAUGE CRIMP FITTINGS
  • COMPLETE HOW-TO-USE INSTRUCTIONS PROVIDED
Now you can save yourself an expensive call to the plumber - The BEST-PEX plumbing is a complete do-it-yourself PEX tubing system for home building or remodeling. Tools, tubing and accessories are available in 3/8", 1/2", 3/4" and I" ID sizes. Download our easy to understand installation guide and get started today.



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Last modified: Friday, 2007-11-02 23:43 PST