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Kitec piping has created alot of work for companies that specialize at repiping houses. Vegas water has alot of minerals in it which contributes to the fittings failure. The Kitec fitting system is flawed and 10s of thousands of Las Vegas homes have been repiped because of this. Construction defect attorneys are the real winners out of all of this. I don't care much for defect attorneys because they drive up our general liability insurance. Anyway, I have installed Wirsbo/Uponor piping with plastic fittings and had no problems for the last 8 years although I've recently seen some copper to pex brass adaptors failing. The water out here is very hard on any type of metal pipe or fitting. I have used Vanguard Pex and had no problems to date, but I'm wondering about those brass fittings.
 

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What about water treatment?
The aggressive water is the root of all of these problems, I'd say from what I read Las Vegas water could eat it's way out of a glass jug.
I would imagine the water treatment specialists have a huge market there.:eek:

I'm curious why more aggressive water treatment programs aren't being pursued.
 

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You are extremely correct on the lawyers in regards to defective(real or perceived) materials and the added cost of general liability insurance. One major problem here is that when the lawyers and the insurance people get together, it seems they would rather settle on the problem. We have had several claims that we would have rather fought to the end on what we knew was right, but the insurance company said the would rather settle because they were not sure the could win in court. Very dissettling.
 

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You are extremely correct on the lawyers in regards to defective(real or perceived) materials and the added cost of general liability insurance. One major problem here is that when the lawyers and the insurance people get together, it seems they would rather settle on the problem. We have had several claims that we would have rather fought to the end on what we knew was right, but the insurance company said the would rather settle because they were not sure the could win in court. Very dissettling.
__I had an insurance claim, ONCE. This claimant, a GC, did nothing but insurance work and I had made the very bad decission* to additionally insure him, he really knew how to work the system. (In a nutshell, I verbally and IN WRITTING told "them" (plural) a lead closet bend to CI section would fail, the GC would not let me fix it citing too much money and it did leak 2 years later), he was additionally insured and in Calif GC's have to warrant for 4 years. The insurance company wanted to cave to his demands. I told the insurance company that if they caved I was going to fly to Sacramento and camp out on the State Insurance Commissioners door till I got a meeting and show him my written evidence. Once I said that the Insurance Co.'s tone changed dramatically.

__The GC LOST, he did not get one dime...

* NEVER EVER ADDITIONALLY INSURE ANYONE!!!

ALWAYS send people your recomendations in WRITTING and have a "RECOMENDATIONS NOT PERFORMED" clause in your contracts. (It is basically a, "If you do not act on my recomendations and there is a failure you hold me harmless" kinda deal. ) This way, if your ever in court, the judge has something to chew on OTHER than he said she said scenarios
 

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Case and point here as well, we had a GC call us yesterday for a major gas leak at a plant nursery that they were demolishing. We arrived there and it was a 4" line that supplied another addition. He told our plumber to just spot repair it with a dresser coupling. Thank God our plumber called me about it. I told the GC there was no way I was going to do this as it is a gas company line and there is no way we can have the liability of potential accidents. A case of the GC wanting to just "get by" on the cheap.
 

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It's easy to blame it on the Attorneys but I have represented a bunch of plumbers over the years and the truth of the matter is there is generally something they did which keeps them in the case. The best thing you can do to protect yourself is number one comply with the Codes and number two, document the heck out of everything.

When you are involved in a lawsuit it is not you who is arguing your case. Typically it is an Expert hired by your insurance company talking to Experts from both the Developer and the Plaintiff. The Developer could be your best friend for the last 20-years and it carries no weight with the Expert representing him. At some point the insurance company must make a decision on what the risk is to not settle the case. A big part of the decision depends on the job you did and how well you documented it.

Mark
 

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I have not doing a lot of plumbing for the last couple years. About 2 1/2 years ago I pulled this tee out of my own house and haven't looked into the problem until now.
Now after reading posts and following links this appears to be dezincification. This fitting was a Zurn and it was about 5 years in service.
It didn't crap out on its own I was re piping and yanking out the pex it just broke apart in my hand. Anyway I have thousands of the fitting out there
buried in multi million houses. It wasn't my company though so unless some drowns I'm not going to know.
Whats the deal copper tube fittings were all cast brass when I started plumbing? Why did they not desolve? Is this all about Chinese crap again?
And why is all these same fittings still being sold if they are ticking bombs?

This was from North Kingstown RI some the best water you can get.
Bob Morris

 

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I have not doing a lot of plumbing for the last couple years. About 2 1/2 years ago I pulled this tee out of my own house and haven't looked into the problem until now.
Now after reading posts and following links this appears to be dezincification. This fitting was a Zurn and it was about 5 years in service.
It didn't crap out on its own I was re piping and yanking out the pex it just broke apart in my hand. Anyway I have thousands of the fitting out there
buried in multi million houses. It wasn't my company though so unless some drowns I'm not going to know.
Whats the deal copper tube fittings were all cast brass when I started plumbing? Why did they not desolve? Is this all about Chinese crap again?
And why is all these same fittings still being sold if they are ticking bombs?

This was from North Kingstown RI some the best water you can get.
Bob Morris

I'm not sure what the mechanism of failure was but it sure does not look like Dezincification. Generally, in Dezincification the Zinc is leached out of the fitting and leaves a white meringue on both the inside and outside of the fitting.

Mark
 

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Well said Utah, documentation no matter how trivial you may feel it is. We actually photograph every phase of our projects because in this day and age it is very simple to store the photos on our hard drive and then for the hard file, put them on CD and in their folders with the plans or whatever permits and documents you have. I will admit, we have been called on to give expert(not sure I am) testimonies and the attorneys may get a little bum rap when the case is going and there is negligence on the contractor or plumber.
 

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When you do a search for lawsuits due to copper pipe and fitting failure you will find none. The defenders of pex and pex fittings can argue till they are blue in the face. You can blame lawyers and liability. You can blame inexperianced or inept plumbers. In the end it makes no difference who the blame is placed on. The law suits will continue and multiply. Pex is what it is; plastic, and plastic is subject to a host of things that can be problematic from chemicals, physical damage, exposure to sunlight and defects or problems in the manufacturing process. The europeans have been using pex for better than 30 years now, that's the usual argument. Note however that the Europeans don't chlorinate their water. ( a known problem) Also, if you search back far enough and talk to factory reps you will find out that there have indeed been a host of pex problems in Europe spanning 30 years and covering both pipe and fittings. I know those of you that are in love with this product will find all sorts of ways to defend it, but ask yourself. Are the points of your defense yours, or what the rep told you? Just because you have not had problems yet is no guarantee that you won't in the near future. For my part, I'm glad I don't have to make that business decision anymore.
 

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I love pex pipe, persuade me to change my ways. That's all. Copper pipe when it leaks can and will create damage, you can't say it won't, seen allot more leaks in copper then I have ever seen with pex, which is almost nil with pex.
 

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When you do a search for lawsuits due to copper pipe and fitting failure you will find none. The defenders of pex and pex fittings can argue till they are blue in the face. You can blame lawyers and liability. You can blame inexperianced or inept plumbers. In the end it makes no difference who the blame is placed on. The law suits will continue and multiply. Pex is what it is; plastic, and plastic is subject to a host of things that can be problematic from chemicals, physical damage, exposure to sunlight and defects or problems in the manufacturing process. The europeans have been using pex for better than 30 years now, that's the usual argument. Note however that the Europeans don't chlorinate their water. ( a known problem) Also, if you search back far enough and talk to factory reps you will find out that there have indeed been a host of pex problems in Europe spanning 30 years and covering both pipe and fittings. I know those of you that are in love with this product will find all sorts of ways to defend it, but ask yourself. Are the points of your defense yours, or what the rep told you? Just because you have not had problems yet is no guarantee that you won't in the near future. For my part, I'm glad I don't have to make that business decision anymore.
Well galv & brass pipe will outlast copper and have not herd about any lawsuit against them so lets go back to threading pipe.

But I'm not here to argue the pex copper thing I just would liketo know
why we haven't seen this problem with the old cast brass copper fittings?

Like I asked before is this a Asian crap metal thing or what?

And I'm not aware of any problem with plastic its the metal!

I love pex too. Ron what brand & type of fittings do you use ?
 

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Well galv & brass pipe will outlast copper and have not herd about any lawsuit against them so lets go back to threading pipe.

But I'm not here to argue the pex copper thing I just would liketo know
why we haven't seen this problem with the old cast brass copper fittings?

Like I asked before is this a Asian crap metal thing or what?

And I'm not aware of any problem with plastic its the metal!

I love pex too. Ron what brand & type of fittings do you use ?

FYI-There was a major class action lawsuit against galvanize pipe in Southern California. The same area had major failures in soft copper as well. Some of the PEX fittings which have failed in Las Vegas have been made in China and some have been made in the USA. All of the fittings are made to the same ASTM Standard regardless of the Country of origin. The weak link is compatibility with the environment in which they were installed.

Mark
 
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HydroPEX Crimp Fittings with ss rings.

I won't use brass fittings for pex but I guess it does depend on the water situation. The Hydropex fittings are the cheaper brass, I would be very leary of using them. By cheaper I mean dollar wise cheaper, a 3/4" elbow for about a buck. The Viega PureFlow bronze fittings are about three dollars each. I pay three times the price for each fitting but I can sleep at night!:laughing:
Lately I started running the home run system to save on fittings. I'm using the copper manifolds, it sure is faster that way.
 

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The name I got was from a google search, the fitting them self say Unipex 1807, made in China, so maybe they the ones you talk about, our supply only carries these brands.
 

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FYI-There was a major class action lawsuit against galvanize pipe in Southern California. The same area had major failures in soft copper as well. Some of the PEX fittings which have failed in Las Vegas have been made in China and some have been made in the USA. All of the fittings are made to the same ASTM Standard regardless of the Country of origin. The weak link is compatibility with the environment in which they were installed.

Mark
What is being done to treat the agressiveness of the water?
To me the root problem is the water quality! :whistling2:
Back in the second post I asked this same question...
http://www.plumbingzone.com/f2/pex-piping-3094/#post37734

Seems to me that every pipe used in that area will have problems....
It could be the end of plumbing as we know it if treatment isn't applied...
That crap they call water could eat it's way out of a glass jug!
 
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