How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
site-built, mobile/manfuactured and modular homes
What is the average life expectancy of water and drain plumbing pipes?
Wednesday, December 25, 2019
How long do plumbing pipes last?
The average life of plumbing pipes ranges from around 40 to 70 years, depending on the pipe material and its use. Water supply pipes are under pressure and prone to earlier failure than drain piping—or, at least, it gets noticed sooner. Here’s our best estimate of lifespans of common pipe materials. Click on any pipe material to go to an article with more details about it.
ABS - 50 to 70 years
Cast Iron - 50 to 65 years
Copper - 50 to 70 years
CPVC - 50 to 70 years
Galvanized Steel - 40 to 60 years
Orangeburg (bituminous fiber) - 50 years
PB (polybutylene) - less than 30 years
PEX - 40 years
PVC - 50 to 70 years
Go to our blog post What is the average lifespan of the parts of a house? for rating of other house components. To understand the basis, potential use, and limitations of lifespan ratings, see our blog post How accurate are the average life expectancy ratings of home components? Are they actually useful?
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Here’s links to a collection of our other blog posts about PLUMBING PIPES:
NOTE: These life expectancies are based on data provided by InterNACHI, NAHB, FannieMae, and our own professional experience. Because of the numerous variables that can affect a lifespan, they should be used as rough guidelines only, and not relied upon as a warranty or guarantee of future performance.
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