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Subject: plumbing pipes made from CPVC
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Author Messages
TomB21
(Washington)

Posts:3


12/29/2017 11:41 AM  
Can you please offer help? We are a committee of a condo association and looking for the manner in which other condo associations may have dealt with a plumbing pipe product called 'CPVC'. It can cause notable problems, which we may be experiencing at the moment, and want to learn how other condo groups, or multi-family properties, may have dealt with the issue. Thank you for whatever info you can share. It will really be appreciated.
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3054


12/29/2017 12:29 PM  
So What is CPVC?
You can think of CPVC as PVC’s cousin. They are similar in many ways, but they shouldn't be used interchangeably. Both are made of the same basic elements with one distinguishing factor. CPVC is altered by a free radical chlorination reaction that effectively increases the chlorine content of the material. CPVC is also a thermoplastic that is molded into many of the same products as PVC.

This difference in makeup allows CPVC to withstand a wider range of temperatures. This is why many building codes require the use of CPVC as opposed to PVC for use in hot water applications. The ASTM standard allows PVC to be used in applications not exceeding 140 degrees F.

Temperatures over this can cause softening of the material and weakening of joints. CPVC on the other hand can handle temperatures up to 200 degrees F.
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:5749


12/29/2017 1:20 PM  
So, Richard, again you didn't s cite your source and made it sound as if your reply was original from you alone.

Anyway, as a property mgr., do any of your accounts have CPVC in their condo buildings?

Our high rise does not and has copper piping. So can't help, Tom. In addition, there are few condo HOAs on this forum.

Too bad our retired plumber just left this forum. I KNOW he'd be able to help.

RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3054


12/29/2017 1:26 PM  
Posted By KerryL1 on 12/29/2017 1:20 PM
So, Richard, again you didn't s cite your source and made it sound as if your reply was original from you alone.

Anyway, as a property mgr., do any of your accounts have CPVC in their condo buildings?

Our high rise does not and has copper piping. So can't help, Tom. In addition, there are few condo HOAs on this forum.

Too bad our retired plumber just left this forum. I KNOW he'd be able to help.




I did a google search as I didn't know what the hell CPVC was. What did you offer? That's right, NOTHING!!!!

Happy New Year.
RichardP13
(California)

Posts:3054


12/29/2017 1:26 PM  
Posted By KerryL1 on 12/29/2017 1:20 PM
So, Richard, again you didn't s cite your source and made it sound as if your reply was original from you alone.

Anyway, as a property mgr., do any of your accounts have CPVC in their condo buildings?

Our high rise does not and has copper piping. So can't help, Tom. In addition, there are few condo HOAs on this forum.

Too bad our retired plumber just left this forum. I KNOW he'd be able to help.




I did a google search as I didn't know what the hell CPVC was. What did you offer? That's right, NOTHING!!!!

Happy New Year.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:7663


12/29/2017 4:38 PM  
We don't know the actual nature of "multiple problems" with the CPVC piping your having. That may factor in on the best advice to give. Believe me, your going to get a number of people who are going to claim the pipes are poisoning their water because of the material used. Is that they leak or burst in weather?

My pipes are the old galvanized piping. So have plenty of problems with that. If your looking to replace the piping I would suggest looking into "Pex" piping. It's less intrusive, flexible, and easier to install. No health issues I've heard with them either.

Former HOA President
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:5749


12/29/2017 4:42 PM  
Is your condo a multi-story building, Tom?
TomB21
(Washington)

Posts:3


12/29/2017 5:02 PM  
Yes our condo buildings are 4 stories tall
GreggT
(Florida)

Posts:72


12/29/2017 5:54 PM  
What type of problems are you experiencing? CPVC is widely used with no issues. Unless outdated codes call for copper, CPVC is used widely in new houses and apartment developments.
TomB21
(Washington)

Posts:3


12/29/2017 6:02 PM  
Some of our residents believe we are experiencing what apparently is a problem with CPVC that is similar to those we discovered with a Google search on the product.
LetA
(Nevada)

Posts:502


12/29/2017 9:52 PM  
Posted By TomB21 on 12/29/2017 6:02 PM
Some of our residents believe we are experiencing what apparently is a problem with CPVC that is similar to those we discovered with a Google search on the product.





When was your condo built? and did the builder use Kitec plumbing? Typically the new stuff being used is PEX.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:7663


12/30/2017 4:06 AM  
Power of suggestion? It's like the whole mold thing. Have people see mold and start coming up with symptoms. Not all mold is created equal or toxic. Every house has mold in it. You will always have those people who want it "remedied" immediately or they will sue. However, most of the time the remedy is simple bleach/water mix sprayed on it and maybe repaint over it. They will insist that's just a patch job. Well then now you have to rip the walls down and put up new drywall. Which stirs up dusts and spreads the mold spores everywhere. Oh and it displaces them. Which now they are angry cause all that drama has to happen to them. Never going to be a satisfactory solution.

So my opinion is that you get multiple PROFESSIONAL opinions. Not just one Plumber. Especially after what I read about the CPVC issues. Seems it's more of a plumber preference than issue. I agree PEX is a better but doesn't mean you all need to have it all replaced. My experience in the plumbing world (or construction) there will ALWAYS be a better product or one with issues.

If your members insist on replacement, understand the costs and damage that will cause. Walls will have to be opened up. Which then stirs up dust. Some existing plumbing fixtures may experience issues as pressures change in the pipes. They may spend days or weeks without water. The replacement will never mean that there won't be the same issues or new ones.

The most important is to understand that you will ALL have to kick in money out of your own pockets for this work. Do you all feel it's worth spending thousands of dollars to have your walls torn up for new plumbing installed? You will ALL have to agree to do this.

Former HOA President
PaiN


Posts:0


12/30/2017 9:27 AM  
http://www.plumbermag.com/how-to-articles/corporation_lubrizol_pipe_materials/potential_plumbing_problems_lurking_in_walls

“On some houses it lasts quite a long time before it gets brittle. Other houses, I think it has more to do with temperature and placement of the pipe than anything,” Grzetich says. “But over time, any kind of CPVC is going to get brittle and eventually crack. And once it cracks, it cracks pretty good and then you’re going to get a steady stream of water out of it. It’s not like copper where you get a leak in it and it just drips. Once CPVC cracks, it goes. I was at a house the other day, and there were three leaks in the ceiling, all from CPVC. And when I tried to repair them, the pipe just kept cracking.”
DouglasM6
(Arizona)

Posts:724


12/30/2017 11:57 AM  
Posted By PaiN on 12/30/2017 9:27 AM
http://www.plumbermag.com/how-to-articles/corporation_lubrizol_pipe_materials/potential_plumbing_problems_lurking_in_walls

“On some houses it lasts quite a long time before it gets brittle. Other houses, I think it has more to do with temperature and placement of the pipe than anything,” Grzetich says. “But over time, any kind of CPVC is going to get brittle and eventually crack. And once it cracks, it cracks pretty good and then you’re going to get a steady stream of water out of it. It’s not like copper where you get a leak in it and it just drips. Once CPVC cracks, it goes. I was at a house the other day, and there were three leaks in the ceiling, all from CPVC. And when I tried to repair them, the pipe just kept cracking.”




He's back!!
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:2430


12/31/2017 2:24 PM  
Posted By DouglasM6 on 12/30/2017 11:57 AM
He's back!!

Was there ever any doubt? I'm somewhat disappointed with the lack of originality in the new name chosen, but to each his several own.
PaiN


Posts:0


01/04/2018 11:57 AM  
OP,

read the following CAREFULLY, then you may weep in frustration:

Pinpointing the Cause of Loss
Should you encounter a water loss because of a failed CPVC pipe or fitting, proper preservation of the failed part(s) is crucial. An analysis of the entire CPVC system at issue may also be necessary. Proper forensic techniques should be employed to determine the root cause. The CPVC, and the chemicals on it and/or in it, are a treasure trove of information to be discovered, literally at a molecular level. Do not tape labels on the failed part, and do not handle the failed part extensively if it can be avoided. The tape’s adhesive may hamper discovery of the true cause of failure. Skin oils may cover up other more important aggressive materials that may be on the surface. If you cannot leave the failed parts in their installed position, then wrap them in sheets of aluminum foil before placing them in any plastic evidence storage bag. Materials in plastic bags can leach out and contaminate oils, or aggressive agents on the surfaces of the failed CPVC parts. Also, do not break open cracked CPVC pipes and fittings to see what is inside. A skilled forensic scientist should do that, and only under controlled conditions after notifying all interested parties to avoid allegations of spoliation of evidence.

With respect to a CPVC failure, forensics is not a mechanical/metals evaluation (black iron, copper, and so on) but rather it is a chemical/materials evaluation, which requires unique skills and specialized examination methods. Looking at CPVC at the microscopic and molecular level, using various chemical examination techniques (gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and so on) may be needed to determine the cause of a failure.

CPVC and Subrogation
Determining the cause of a CPVC failure is complicated, and determining which party is responsible is even more difficult. However, a properly manufactured, designed, installed, and maintained CPVC piping system should not fail. So, when a failure does occur, there is likely some party that made a mistake along the way. Navigating the course between cause analysis and recovery dollars can be filled with pitfalls, from product liability defenses, contractual defenses and spoliation of evidence issues.

With a multitude of causes comes a myriad of potential subrogation targets. Developing the relevant list of interested parties, and placing targets on notice, is crucial before finalizing your subrogation evaluation. The critical point, however is recognizing that when CPVC fails, there are numerous potential avenues for subrogation to be explored.

PaiN


Posts:0


01/04/2018 12:03 PM  
Plumbing actually still is a skilled trade, albeit the typical buyer today is willing to pay for junk so they can get 'more'.

The amount spent for plumbing in a typical 'McMansion' would really only pay for a single bath and simple kitchen if done 'right'.

Sad but true.

Plumbing once lasted for 50-90 years,

now it's

"never stop improving".


'Code' is merely the MINIMUM required for human occupation, NOT good practice.



ps. you asked
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/04/2018 9:49 PM  
Posted By TomB21 on 12/29/2017 6:02 PM
Some of our residents believe we are experiencing what apparently is a problem with CPVC that is similar to those we discovered with a Google search on the product.



But in actuality, what problems are you experiencing? When was your condo built, and where? CPVC was pretty common in the early '80's (along with PB pipe), but around 1990, at least in Seattle, it seemed like the big Type V buildings went back to copper for a number of years (except for fire sprinkler pipes). Now they've gone almost exclusively to PEX.

So what I would do is:
1) Figure out if there really is a problem
2) Figure out if there really is CPVC present
3) See if the #1 is caused by #2.

I'm wouldn't be so sure that the problem isn't psychosomatic heartache caused by something that isn't there
PaiN


Posts:0


01/05/2018 7:29 AM  
valid point

however

cpvc is STILL the cheapest junk available
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/05/2018 8:01 AM  
Posted By PaiN on 01/05/2018 7:29 AM
valid point

however

cpvc is STILL the cheapest junk available




Just cause they don't make PB anymore ha ha.

I still would want to know what these problems at the condo are, and if in fact they do have CPVC (and PVC too). To me the issue is failure, there doesn't seem like a lot of other issues with PVC.
PaiN


Posts:0


01/05/2018 9:48 AM  
Chlorinated Poly Vinyl Chloride will simply have a 'slightly' higher temperature rating than PVC.

They are both JUNK.

I would actually PREFER Butyl piping, but with Stainless Steel fittings and PROFESSIONALLY installed copper crimp rings.

It was not the PB pipe which failed, but the plastic insert fittings.


I, personally, have type "L" copper tube for water supply and DWV copper for drainage.

I expect 60+ years of trouble free service.






However, y'all listen to the salespeople and not the plumber who has NEVER, EVER, had a leak in his own home. (other than a faucet washer or cartridge)


meter now at 100%

out
DouglasM6
(Arizona)

Posts:724


01/05/2018 12:10 PM  
Is that Hysteria I smell?
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/05/2018 12:30 PM  
The OP hasn't offered any facts that would suggest otherwise. Heck, we don't know if they even have non PEX plastic domestic supply in their building.

I don't worry about PVC DWV. Like PIA, I've installed hundreds of feet of copper DWV in big Type 1 buildings, but where not required by life safety codes PVC and ABS DWV don't concren me too much
PaiN


Posts:0


01/05/2018 12:57 PM  
no hysteria

simply stating good practice versus code minimum

pressurized piping : plastic versus metal

just under boiling spaghetti water into sink drain : D'OH

power augers run into piping by handymen

fire transmission floor to floor (if multistory) : picture a vertical 'turbo torch'

cheap versus costly materials

110%
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/05/2018 1:05 PM  
Posted By PaiN on 01/05/2018 12:57 PM
no hysteria

simply stating good practice versus code minimum

pressurized piping : plastic versus metal

just under boiling spaghetti water into sink drain : D'OH

power augers run into piping by handymen

fire transmission floor to floor (if multistory) : picture a vertical 'turbo torch'

cheap versus costly materials

110%




I wasn't accusing you of hysteria. I don't agree with all your concern vis-a-vis boiling water, augers and fire transmission (which should have been addresses by fire collars anyway). I was addressing this by the OP

"Some of our residents believe we are experiencing what apparently is a problem with CPVC that is similar to those we discovered with a Google search on the product"

Which without examples of these problems that the building is actually experiencing does seem like internet based hysteria from reading too much JLS on-line and out of context.
DouglasM6
(Arizona)

Posts:724


01/05/2018 1:19 PM  
Posted By PaiN on 01/05/2018 12:57 PM
no hysteria

simply stating good practice versus code minimum

pressurized piping : plastic versus metal

just under boiling spaghetti water into sink drain : D'OH

power augers run into piping by handymen

fire transmission floor to floor (if multistory) : picture a vertical 'turbo torch'

cheap versus costly materials

110%




My comment, "...Hysteria..." was not directed at you. It was directed a person/persons that say there is a problem because they read it on the web, but won't post the actual issue.

Try not to be so defensive. <--- directed at you!

PS. Nobody cares about your meter anymore. You've ran that one into the ground.
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/05/2018 1:23 PM  
Hugs all around. I just hope PIA doesn't grope my butt when we do
PaiN


Posts:0


01/05/2018 2:30 PM  
oooooooooooooooooooooooooooh

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah

butt gropes
PaiN


Posts:0


01/05/2018 2:31 PM  
....... also:

"My butt don't stink, my joints don't leak".


(referring to plumbing joints, of course)
PaiN


Posts:0


01/05/2018 7:10 PM  
ps.

..... fire transmission (which should have been addresses by fire collars anyway). .....



a VERTICAL section of PVC waste will act as an INTERNALLY FLAMING 'turbo torch' regardless of external fireproofing

a vertical stack is well vented


try the following OUTDOORS well away from any structure


put a 10' section of 4" pvc or cpvc vertically on a 2x4

light the INTERIOR with a torch

stand way way way back


WHOOOOSSSSH
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/05/2018 8:36 PM  
Posted By PaiN on 01/05/2018 7:10 PM
ps.

..... fire transmission (which should have been addresses by fire collars anyway). .....



a VERTICAL section of PVC waste will act as an INTERNALLY FLAMING 'turbo torch' regardless of external fireproofing

a vertical stack is well vented


try the following OUTDOORS well away from any structure


put a 10' section of 4" pvc or cpvc vertically on a 2x4

light the INTERIOR with a torch

stand way way way back


WHOOOOSSSSH




Based on the testing and analysis available, no credible data exists from which it can be inferred that plastic pipe cannot be used safely in fire-resistive construction.

https://www.pmengineer.com/articles/84632-plastic-pipe-and-fire-safety
PaiN


Posts:0


01/06/2018 7:28 AM  
run my demo and see for yourself

PaiN


Posts:0


01/07/2018 8:40 AM  
see also:

http://www.ipexna.com/media/2460/dwv-systems-brochure.pdf

the 'key' being 'noncombustible' construction
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/07/2018 9:32 AM  
That's a sales brochure trying to hype sales in Type I construction. Presently, PVC is not allowed in Type I residential buildings, and I wouldn't guess when this would change. The building the OP (and the majority of this conversation) is concerned with is Type V.

Thanks for bringing a grapefruit to the apple convention.
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:5749


01/07/2018 9:50 AM  
Good to have your back, Mark!
PaiN


Posts:0


01/07/2018 11:54 AM  
I am referring to GOOD PRACTICE

NOT

the code allowed MINIMUM requirements.



code allows interior heated temp of 55

code allows 7'6" ceiling height

code allows plastic pipe through fire walls (EXTERNALLY stopped)

code allows appliances in the main living area

code allows 'bouncy' floors

code allows annoying sound transmission through walls and ceilings

code allows many things that are NOT good practice




My 'local' was instrumental in building a multi family structure EXACTLY and PRECISELY to code in the mid 70s for demonstration purposes.

We could not give it away after the event and had to demo it.


However, y'all enjoy your McMansions and 'Never Stop Improving'.



OUT
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/07/2018 9:38 PM  
What and where should code be exceeded? Should the domestic supply be increased to 1" where 3/4" is standard? Is 4" DWV better for a single WC than 3"? How about electrical? Instead of 12 and 14 gauge supply 20 and 15 amp circuits respectively, should it be a matter of rote to supply a 20A circuit with a 10 or better yet, an 8 gauge wire? By your reasoning the answer to all of these is yes, because bigger is better.
TimB4
(Virginia)

Posts:15999


01/08/2018 5:42 AM  
Mark,

I do believe that the point is simply that code is minimum requirements.
However, many owners would (if knowledgeable on the subjects) would opt for above code in certain areas.


Example (as provided): Ceiling heights per code are 7.5 feet. Many opt to have 8 and 9 foot ceilings in their homes.

I recall back in the 70s when supermarkets would push generic products (foil, trash bags, etc.) touting why pay for more then is required, these products all meet the government requirements. Anyone I know of who purchased those items only bought it once because they were far inferior to the name brand products they were already using.

In regards to the electrical codes, in some instances (due to the heavier use of electrical equipment in today's society) the gauge of wire should be higher OR, at the very least, the load allowed per breaker should be reduced. Overheating of wires still occurs today because code allows it. Example: In my town home, both secondary bedrooms and the hallway outlet are on the same circuit. Put a computer, TV, game system, hair dryer and run the vacuum in the hallway and the breaker will trip. However, it's built to code.
PaiN


Posts:0


01/08/2018 6:10 AM  
Tim,

thank you

you are the 'people person'

I am the PITA

DouglasM6
(Arizona)

Posts:724


01/08/2018 10:41 AM  
Great, a discussion between plumbers.....

Where is the OP with the answers to our questions?

PaiN


Posts:0


01/08/2018 5:10 PM  
Posted By DouglasM6 on 01/08/2018 10:41 AM
Great, a discussion between plumbers.....





Please remember:

Your Ka-Ka is our bread and butter
GreggT
(Florida)

Posts:72


01/09/2018 8:14 AM  
And this stupid thread goes on, and on, and on, and.....................
PaiN


Posts:0


01/09/2018 9:02 AM  
Yet, YOU comment and extend same ......................
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/09/2018 9:04 AM  
Those that can chase turds do. Those that can't chase turds complain.
PaiN


Posts:0


01/09/2018 9:04 AM  
OP,

The ONLY solution to improperly or problematically installed piping is replacement.

or

Pay as you go fixing problems.
DouglasM6
(Arizona)

Posts:724


01/09/2018 9:27 AM  
Posted By PaiN on 01/08/2018 5:10 PM
Posted By DouglasM6 on 01/08/2018 10:41 AM
Great, a discussion between plumbers.....





Please remember:

Your Ka-Ka is our bread and butter




Okay, some more Ka ka then!

The problem with the entire plumbing trade is the amount of IQ, or lack there of, to sweat copper or glue some PVC pipe together. And now, it's even easier! For those who lack the knowledge to sweat copper, there are shark bites, and a new crimping system! Anyone can do it now!

So, if you couple that with an economy where the demographic always looks for the most inexpensive option, you end up with a bunch of problems. 99% of the folks standing outside the Home Depot looking for work have the IQ needed to put pipe together.

Also, I don't understand why it's mandated that half your butt crack be showing when performing the work?
MarkM31
(Washington)

Posts:381


01/09/2018 9:34 AM  
Posted By PaiN on 01/09/2018 9:04 AM
OP,

The ONLY solution to improperly or problematically installed piping is replacement.

or

Pay as you go fixing problems.




But the OP still won't post back what the problem(s) are. I think that it is likely just internet dricen angst without any real issues.
PaiN


Posts:0


01/09/2018 10:30 AM  
Douglas & Mark,

Right On

PaiN


Posts:0


01/09/2018 3:23 PM  
? who said only plumbers ?


http://hollywoodlife.com/2017/01/05/fergie-bikini-pics-cleavage-butt-beach/

http://birthwithoutfearblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/jackie_0146-copy-002.jpg
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