PEX plumbing has become increasingly popular over the last three decades to the point where it is now the standard for water delivery systems in 70 – 80% of new home construction. Nick’s Plumbing has been installing PEX water lines since the late 1990s, and about 90% of those PEX installations are still in use, providing reliable, trouble-free service. But PEX plumbing isn’t just about those flexible red and blue tubes that deliver water to your plumbing appliances and fixtures.
The central point of every PEX pipe installation is the PEX manifold, which is usually installed close to the main water inlet. For instance, if your main water supply pipe enters the house through the garage, your PEX manifold will be in an adjacent laundry or mud room. The purpose of locating the manifold in an indoor space is to keep them in a climate-controlled environment where they are unaffected by outdoor weather conditions, like in a garage or attic.
What is a PEX Manifold?
Think of your PEX manifold as a circuit breaker box for your plumbing system. In the same way that your electrical panel is the central connection point for all electrical outlets in your home, the PEX manifold serves the same purpose for your plumbing system.
How Does a PEX Manifold Work?
A residential PEX manifold comprises two chambers, one for cold water and one for hot water, each connected to its respective supply line. Each of the two chambers has several ports that allow water to flow from the manifold to an individual PEX pipe to deliver water to a sink, dishwasher, or any other fixture. Each port on the PEX manifold can be turned on and off with a simple tool or a pair of pliers and can be of extreme help when needing to turn off a single leaking toilet or faucet.
So, Do I Need a PEX Manifold?
If you have PEX pipes for your water supply lines, you already have a PEX manifold somewhere in your home. It’s usually hidden behind a removable wall panel in your utility or laundry room, and some homeowners may need to be made aware of its presence.
The ability of the homeowner or plumbing company to turn off individual water supply lines throughout the home can help with water conservation and diagnostics. You’ll save money on decreased water usage by turning the water off to unused (or rarely used) bathrooms or outdoor fixtures. Leak detection becomes much easier for plumbing companies, as they can control water flow to each fixture to isolate the offending pipe.
Should I Call a Whole-House Re-Pipe Specialist?
If you watch local TV, you’ll know there is no shortage of commercials advertising the newest “whole-house re-pipe company.” Most of these companies are anything but local businesses; instead, they’re national franchises that operate in several cities across the country. Dealing with service companies registered out of state can make getting any warranty work performed a nightmare.
Another issue with “whole-house re-pipe” companies is that they’re often not plumbing companies; they perform a specific plumbing-related task. The technicians they use are often apprentice-level plumbers looking to get their start in the industry with an on-site licensed supervisor. Many of these companies do an excellent job at re-pipes, but why trust your plumbing to anyone besides a licensed and experienced plumbing company?
I’m Ready to Switch to PEX; Who Can I Call?
Nick’s Plumbing and Sewer Services has been installing PEX manifolds in Houston for the last two decades. Re-piping your whole house with PEX pipes is an excellent alternative to your existing galvanized pipes and a much cheaper option than copper pipe installation.
PEX pipes are rustproof, corrosion-resistant, retain more heat, and can expand up to three times in size to accommodate freezing temperatures and minimize damage.
Call Nick’s Plumbing and Sewer Services today and schedule a convenient consultation on any PEX plumbing questions you have.
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