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Re: Seasonal Cottage Plumbing

To: Jim Juhas <>
Subject: Re: Seasonal Cottage Plumbing
From: Trevor Boicey <>
Date: Sun, 14 Nov 2004 14:26:09 -0500
Jim Juhas wrote:
> But, what is the best suggestion for materials to withstand
> a light freeze?  I know there are two grades of copper pipe,
> which I presently use, and for replacements as things needed
> fixing, I've gone with the heavier stuff.  What I'm curious
> about is whether the plastic systems are more durable for
> this sort of thing.  I interpret from what I read at the
> stores that plastic is now suitable for hot and cold potable
> systems, so I expect it is okay to use.

   Just a specific addendum, around here most of the new houses use PEX 
pipe, so somebody must trust it.

   If you install it commercially, generally you use the $300 crimp tool 
which makes all of the joints permanently and cheaply with 25 cent crimp 

   If you install it yourself for a small job like a cottage, it's 
easier and more cost effective to use the screw-in connectors. They are 
about $5 each, but if you can do a whole house with 20 of them it's 
cheaper than the crimp tool, and easier than trying to do it all with a 
24 hour rental window on the tool.

   Also, if the whole place is screw-together, it gives you some measure 
of repair and modification. The connectors aren't SUPPOSED to be 
reusable, but I've gotten away with it a few times on some connectors. 
As well, even if you replace the connector, it's pretty easy to take out 
a tee-joint and put in a tap, or a quad-joint, or all sorts of little 
changes that would be a little more involved with copper. You don't even 
have to drain the pipes.

   Before I bought the cottage, the previous owner winterized just by 
opening a few of the screw in connectors and letting it drain, then 
reconnecting them in the spring.

Trevor Boicey, P. Eng.
Ottawa, Canada,
ICQ #17432933

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