How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
site-built, mobile/manufactured 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?
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Field Guide for Home Inspectors, a quick reference for finding the age of 154 brands of HVAC systems, water heaters, and electrical panels, plus 210 code standards for site-built and manufactured homes, and the life expectancy rating of 195 home components. Available at amazon.com for $19.95.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
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.
of Blog Posts
Top 5 results given instantly.
Click on magnifying glass
for all search results.
Buying a home in North/Central Florida? for a team inspection by two FL-licensed contractors and inspectors. Over 8,500 inspections completed in 20+ years. In a hurry? We will get it done for you.