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Old 01-12-2020, 02:13 AM   #1
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How many years do PEX lines last ? And, do you replace your own plumbing lines ?

Well, I discovered that after turning on my water pump the pressure and a ruptured PEX lines, small hairline crack, is leaking water from under the coach.....

And, a very small amount of water is leaking at the connection to the pump.....

The pump seems to be working fine, although, I was a little suspect at first that something was wrong with the pump causing this to happen.....

After I turned off the pump at the control panel, the leaking stopped....

My question is... even though I wasn't running any water in the sinks or toilet, the pump is apparently on and under pressure if the facuets are off.??? I originally thought that the faucets were only activated when you turned them on, but, I guess that the whole system is pressurized .... and the water pump starts humming the moment you turn on the water source....

Still learning the hard way...
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Old 01-12-2020, 03:13 AM   #2
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Did it have water in the lines and freeze ?

PEX is a lifetime product, used in home construction.
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Old 01-12-2020, 05:14 AM   #3
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Yes. PEX should outlast your coach. When power is applied to the pump it will pressurize the system and shut off. When you open a faucet the pressure drops the pump will activate until it restores the proper line pressure. If your pump shut off and then occasionally “burps”, that is turns on for a second, this can indicate air in a line or more likely a dripping faucet or even a slow leak.
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Old 01-12-2020, 09:37 AM   #4
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if the tubing is split I wonder if it's really PEX or just some other kind of tubing that just looks like PEX. The real thing is really tough stuff.

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Old 01-12-2020, 09:50 AM   #5
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Houses & RV's built prior to 1995 could use Polybutylene pipe, which is grey in color. This has a history of failure and there is actually an initiative to change this piping out in houses as it will eventually cause problems.


PEX pipe is very robust and is designed to last a lifetime (I hope so as I just built a new house and used it throughout).

If a run of pex pipe failed chances are it had water in it and froze, although the fittings are more susceptible to this type of failure.


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Old 01-12-2020, 10:25 AM   #6
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OK, this is interesting information.... thanks

Could this be a delayed reaction??? I don't know?

In late 2017 we took the RV back east and there were a couple of days that dropped below freezing...I added the pink antifreeze to our system and we drank bottled water.....

I didn't see any evidence of leaking water from the lines at all until just now... that's over two years.....

It seems very unlikely that it would just now show up...

Here's a picture of the lines..... and the location of the pump..... when I turn off the pump....no water leak.....

When this is fixed, should I just get the pump replaced too....I have heard some occasional "burping"....

I see that these tubes are gray in color .... but, my RV is a 2012 model... do you think that they are actually PEX lines or what?
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Old 01-12-2020, 10:42 AM   #7
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Those pictures look like polybutylene not pex.
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Old 01-12-2020, 11:04 AM   #8
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OK, what does that mean?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redapple View Post
Those pictures look like polybutylene not pex.
I see, how long on average do these last...

Do you agree with me that it's not reasonable for a leak to occur more than 2 years later with a brief period of time below 32 degrees.... and my using the pink antifreeze?

Also, I find it curious about having non-PEX lines in a 2012 model? Why would they do that???? Less expensive product??? Makes me wonder....

Do you think I should replace the pump? The lines inside are striped and look slightly different than the ones outside.
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Old 01-12-2020, 11:31 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MWeiner View Post
I see, how long on average do these last...

Do you agree with me that it's not reasonable for a leak to occur more than 2 years later with a brief period of time below 32 degrees.... and my using the pink antifreeze?

Also, I find it curious about having non-PEX lines in a 2012 model? Why would they do that???? Less expensive product??? Makes me wonder....

Do you think I should replace the pump? The lines inside are striped and look slightly different than the ones outside.

Indeed, those outside pipes appear to be polybutylene, not pex. As to why it was used in your 2012 RV would simply be the decision of the manufacturer, based on any number of things including cost or existing inventory of poly pipe. It was a very common plumbing component before pex became the go-to pipe.


I am not familiar with the properties of poly pipe, but I did a brief research. The "life" of poly pipe in residential use is expected to be 10-15 years. However, many lawsuits were filed against poly pipe manufacturers because of early failures and leaking. Apparently, chemicals in water, like chlorine, can react with the polybutylene and cause it to flake and become brittle. Micro fissures result, weakening the pipe structure and lead to failure. This, along with a freeze, may have made it is possible your pipe was weakened/cracked close to the pump, on the inside, but it did not completely breach the pipe wall. Over the ensuing years, travel and vibration, as well as pressurizing cycles from pump use, may have caused the weakened area to eventually split to the outer wall, thus a leak. Is this "reasonable?" Don't know, it is just a speculation but it could/would account for your situation.


I would not replace the pump if it otherwise operates correctly. The "burping" you just mentioned is the pump restoring system pressure lost due to the slow leak, as has been explained. I would, however, replace the poly pipe with pex when affecting the repair.
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Old 01-12-2020, 11:52 AM   #10
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Being that you own a 2012 rig I doubt it is the polybutylene piping, I don't it is even manufactured any more. Not sure what kind of pipe that is.

Did you wait until there were freezing temps to add the pink antifreeze? Did you completely purge of water before adding the pink antifreeze?

Although PEX pipe can withstand some lower temperatures it is still possible for it freeze in break.

You might check all the fittings to make sure that isn't your problem.
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Old 01-12-2020, 12:07 PM   #11
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Wirsbo (Upnor) pex piping lasts forever, if not exposed to uv.
There are many inferior products at the big box stores called "pex".
They are definitely not all the same.
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Old 01-12-2020, 12:21 PM   #12
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Thank you, that's an excellent suggestion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ljwt330 View Post
Indeed, those outside pipes appear to be polybutylene, not pex. As to why it was used in your 2012 RV would simply be the decision of the manufacturer, based on any number of things including cost or existing inventory of poly pipe. It was a very common plumbing component before pex became the go-to pipe.


I am not familiar with the properties of poly pipe, but I did a brief research. The "life" of poly pipe in residential use is expected to be 10-15 years. However, many lawsuits were filed against poly pipe manufacturers because of early failures and leaking. Apparently, chemicals in water, like chlorine, can react with the polybutylene and cause it to flake and become brittle. Micro fissures result, weakening the pipe structure and lead to failure. This, along with a freeze, may have made it is possible your pipe was weakened/cracked close to the pump, on the inside, but it did not completely breach the pipe wall. Over the ensuing years, travel and vibration, as well as pressurizing cycles from pump use, may have caused the weakened area to eventually split to the outer wall, thus a leak. Is this "reasonable?" Don't know, it is just a speculation but it could/would account for your situation.


I would not replace the pump if it otherwise operates correctly. The "burping" you just mentioned is the pump restoring system pressure lost due to the slow leak, as has been explained. I would, however, replace the poly pipe with pex when affecting the repair.
YES, I will have these lines replaced. I don't know how to do that myself, but, my RV shop will do it.....

I probably should have all the lines inspected and maybe due to the age of my RV...now almost 9 years,
I should have all the lines replaced with PEX?? Really don't know, maybe I should think about selling this in the next year or so.....

Many constant issues....RV means "ruined vacation"😡😡
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Old 01-12-2020, 12:34 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MWeiner View Post
YES, I will have these lines replaced. I don't know how to do that myself, but, my RV shop will do it.....

I probably should have all the lines inspected and maybe due to the age of my RV...now almost 9 years,
I should have all the lines replaced with PEX?? Really don't know, maybe I should think about selling this in the next year or so.....

Many constant issues....RV means "ruined vacation"😡😡

You haven't identified your RV type, but since you posted in the Class B forum, I assume it's a class B. That being said, you probably have a relatively small amount of plumbing but I think it would be wise to get a confirmation as to what type of pipe you do have. If it proves to be polybutylene, then move ahead with replacement by PEX.


Really, access to plumbing is the major issue, but new connectors and fittings can add up. It is your decision if it will be worth it to completely re-plumb, however.
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Old 01-12-2020, 12:55 PM   #14
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Check every fitting for snug tight.

Turn the pump off.
Open a faucet till it quits running.

Snug all the fitting s and clamps that you can see in the pump bay.

They can vibrate loose from the pump kicking on and off.

Dry the area thoroughly.

Anyway, snug down and turn the water on again.

Watch for dampness.

Many times its hard to see all the leakes, seaping.

If you have a small area of tubing leaking ?
You can easily splice in a new section.

Good luck
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