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Natal's HVAC, Plumbing & Electrical Blog

Do Your Pipes Need to Be Upgraded?

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Pipes can come in all shapes and sizes, but not all materials. Since the 1960s, different types of piping materials like lead and galvanized steel have been phased out due to their detrimental health effects and their inability to properly bring us water (or deposit wastewater). We’ve made some serious changes to the way we offer plumbing in this country, and using materials like copper, PVC, and PEX is just the start.

Before we get ahead of ourselves, we need to talk about the basics. How do you even begin to know when your pipes need to be replaced or upgraded? Sure, you could just call a plumber in New Orleans, LA like the ones on our team–but that might not be right for everyone. Some people want to know the signs of a degrading or outdated plumbing system, so they feel confident and know when to call for help.

3 Ways to Detect Old Pipes

Here are three tried and tested ways to figure out if your old pipes need to be replaced. Remember, you can always defer to the professional opinion of a master plumber if you’re unsure.

Constant Leaks

If your pipes are constantly leaking, then there’s probably a problem with the pipe itself. Over time, the protective enamel of a pipe can get worn away and allow for water to leak through small pinhole-sized leaks. Corrosion can take its toll on a pipe even after just 10 years, and one of the first signs of a corroded pipe is constant leaks.

Do yourself a favor and protect your home from water leaks that could cause mold and water damage by getting your pipes replaced.

Outdated Materials

Sometimes you don’t even need to experience anything bad in your plumbing system to know that certain pipes need to be replaced. If you’ve got a pipe in your basement that turns silver when you rub a quarter on it, then it’s likely a lead pipe and should be replaced under any circumstances. Lead pipes still exist in some homes, especially as sewer lines, but they’re at least 60 years old and likely in rough shape.

Galvanized steel pipes also need to be replaced since they aren’t really used for plumbing systems anymore. If your pipes look like they’re made out of steel and are remarkably heavy, then they’re galvanized steel. These pipes can corrode from the inside out!

They’re Loud or Obnoxious

Do your pipes make funky noises when they funnel water to the eventual destination? Or perhaps you’re always getting strange colored water when you turn on the shower for the first time? This could be a direct sign that one of your pipes (or all of them) are starting to deteriorate.

Pipes can lose structural integrity after a long period of time, which can cause them to rattle and shake when used. You’ll usually be able to pick up on these noises when they happen. Discolored water can also be a sign that sediment or rust is building up in the pipes, which can mean corrosion is starting to take its toll on your old pipes.

For great plumbing solutions, you can count on, call Natal’s HVAC, Plumbing & Electrical. Service Honoring the Golden Rule!

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