Originally Posted by bubblegummom
Is it possible for a homeowner to replace their own pipes with Pex? At $150/hour that plumber can get expensive fast!
New here, checking out the forums to see the quality--seems good, so far. I have an old home with galvanized pipe that's really messed up. Some has been replaced with copper so far. But, pending pricing and a conversation an expert plumber I know, I think I'll go with PEX.
Galvanized always, eventually, goes bad. I don't trust PVC/CPVC for potable water (or for food, as in plastic "cling wrap"). There's more to it than just chlorine, which probably, as Glenn points out, washes out. More importantly there is vinyl chloride monomer (the VC in PVC), and the plasticizers in it. Although the monomer is definitely a carcinogen, it probably doesn't stick around. But the plasticizers do, and leach out slowly. In spite of all the good things the American Chemical Society says about PVC and CPVC, they don't have a good track record at telling the truth about this stuff. It seems to me better to be conservative in this respect.
I've seen PVC get brittle after some years, especially exposed to sunlight--sunlight isn't an issue here, but age might be.
PEX (crosslinked polyethylene) has been around, is definitely considered safe in the food industry, and is very tough. It's been in service in Europe for 30 yrs with no problems, and has a projected lifetime of at least 100 yrs according to an industry site I just ran across googl'ing.
It sounds much better, all in all, to me. An additional factor is one can bend it around corners--fewer fittings to mess up or go bad. I plan on doing it myself.
My 2¢ after a little research on it. Oh, and PEX-a looks like the best for home plumbing.