Is it time to do a plumbing upgrade to your home? If so, you may think the job will be pretty straightforward. Know that there are always complications that can happen in the home renovation process, including issues with plumbing. Here are two plumbing upgrades you may be considering and the complications that can result from doing them.
Replacing Galvanized Plumbing
A popular upgrade among homeowners is to replace the old galvanized plumbing with new pipes made out of copper or PEX. Galvanized pipes corrode from the inside, and over time, the inside of the pipe gets smaller and smaller. While the damage will mostly impact the hot water line, you will notice reduced water pressure in both hot and cold water as time goes on. In addition, those galvanized pipes run the risk of bursting as they continue to corrode, making a big mess in your home.
When making this upgrade, many homeowners decide to just replace the exposed horizontal pipes in their basement or crawl space. This is because the horizontal pipes tend to be much worse than the vertical pipes, and the vertical pipes are difficult to change since they are buried behind walls and hard-to-reach places.
What you want to watch out for is any faucets that still have a section of galvanized plumbing. The water pipes will undergo a lot of vibration as nearby pipes are removed from your home, which can cause rust to become dislodged in the pipe. When you turn the water back on, a ton of sediment and debris can end up getting pushed towards the faucets on the end past the galvanized section of pipe. It could actually cause your water pressure to be diminished even more than what it once was.
Before the water is turned on, you'll need to remove aerators and open the faucets in your home for 20 minutes. This will help any debris get flushed through the system and come out the faucet on the other end. It also helps to slowly turn the water back on, rather than turning it on at full blast and causing a disruption in the pipes. If you still have a clogged water line, the problem could require you to flush the line with air, which will dislodge all of that sediment that is causing the clog.
Moving a Water Heater
Upgrading your home's hot water heater gives the opportunity to install a bigger tank or one that is energy efficient. Hot water heater replacement is straightforward, but it gets complicated when you want to move your water heater to a new location as well.
Moving a hot water heater means that you'll need to install a power vent model, since it will no longer be near your chimney. Power vent models use a fan to push dangerous fumes to the outside, since it no longer can naturally flow out a direct vent pipe.
The power vent can make a lot more noise that you are not used to hearing in your home. If your water heater is in your garage, then you don't have much to worry about. However, placing a new power vent hot water heater next to a bedroom wall or floor could create problems you did not think were possible.
Make sure that the pipe for the power vent is not touching any of the floorboards or joists, or that there is plenty of padding around the pipe where they do touch. The pipe can cause a lot of vibration in your home, making the water heater louder than normal. You will also want to budget for soundproofing, since a utility room is often unfinished. Adding some drywall and insulation to the room could help diminish the noise that you hear throughout your home.
For help doing any of these plumbing upgrades, know that Coastal Plumbing, Inc. can help.