Uponor PEX issues - 5 leaks in 2 months. House built in 2015. Need advice.

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Disnyfan1

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Hello! We have had a tube failure and leaks in our home in the last few months. 5 in total. 3 in basement and 2 in main floor hallway. Plumber keeps fixing pinhole leaks and this last one I was told about the class action suit. Googled it and OMG I found a lot of bad info. It's a timebomb basically. Filed a claim with homeowners for 3rd leak and while the construction crew was here fixing the damage to the 3rd leak, the 4th one occurred in the basement (thank God its not finished). The 5th leak occurred the next day in around the same area the construction was taking place for the 3rd leak. So again, plumber came out and fixed and informed us of what needs to be done. Homeowners won't cover the repair to re-tube house. Class action could take years and we are on pins and needles waiting for the next leak while we do some research. Got a quote to re-tube house and it's at $15k without the construction to fix what they tear up. I did stumble across Uponor's claim section on their site and it mentions they have a 25 year warranty. Our house was new when we got it. This is crazy to me. Anyone have luck with getting them to pay for this?? Any advice for us?
 

Reach4

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Figure out what kind of PEX you have. Read the printing on the pipe.
 

Breplum

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You need to contact Uponor. I have reported about this issue in this and other forums.
The normal route is you need to cut out the bad Uponor colored tube and/or take pictures and go through the local Uponor rep who will help process the claim.
In the instance of the not very old home that I was helping with, the homeowner asked for a complete repipe of the red Uponor pipe and Uponor paid complete cost for one of those Repipe Specialist companies to repipe and patch completely.
The colored Uponor pipe is a known issue and they are not disputing that fact as far as I've known.

Pex split 1.jpg
PEX split 2.jpg
 

Nebojsa

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I could be wrong, but didn't Uponor stop making colored pex-A because of this problem, and now they only come in the clear tube only with blue / red letterings.
 

JohnCT

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I could be wrong, but didn't Uponor stop making colored pex-A because of this problem, and now they only come in the clear tube only with blue / red letterings.

Uponor has stopped making the red and blue pipe, and it does seem that the failures have been in red and blue colored pipe, but there seem to be instances of failures even in the white pipe. I suspect it has to do with chlorine levels of the water used with any PEX pipe, but it's my pure guess that type A is more susceptible to chlorine than than B or C. Further, my pure guess is that the method of making the Uponor colored pipes reduced the resistance to damage from chlorine compared to the white pipe (again, my speculation), so the red and blue will fail sooner than the white, but all Uponor pipe is susceptible to chlorine (I have to add again that it's my pure speculation because I have no proof of any of that).

The pictures of the failed Uponor pipe show severe yellowing of the pipe under the applied color layer, which suggests (at least) chemical burn.

John
 
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Ripupthehwy

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Uponor has stopped making the red and blue pipe, and it does seem to fail at a high rate, but there seem to be instances of failures even in the white pipe. I suspect it has to do with chlorine levels of the water used with any PEX pipe, but it's my pure guess that type A is more susceptible to chlorine than than B or C. Further, my pure guess is that the method of making the Uponor colored pipes reduced the resistance to damage from chlorine compared to the white pipe (again, my speculation), so the red and blue will fail sooner than the white, but all Uponor pipe is susceptible to chlorine (I have to add again that it's my pure speculation because I have no proof of any of that).

The pictures of the failed Uponor pipe show severe yellowing of the pipe under the applied color layer, which suggests (at least) chemical burn.

John
Uponor has stopped making the red and blue pipe, and it does seem to fail at a high rate, but there seem to be instances of failures even in the white pipe. I suspect it has to do with chlorine levels of the water used with any PEX pipe, but it's my pure guess that type A is more susceptible to chlorine than than B or C. Further, my pure guess is that the method of making the Uponor colored pipes reduced the resistance to damage from chlorine compared to the white pipe (again, my speculation), so the red and blue will fail sooner than the white, but all Uponor pipe is susceptible to chlorine (I have to add again that it's my pure speculation because I have no proof of any of that).

The pictures of the failed Uponor pipe show severe yellowing of the pipe under the applied color layer, which suggests (at least) chemical burn.

John
I just had my house re-piped with uponor. It’s clear tubing with red letter (hot) and blue lettering (cold). The plumbing co who installed it gives a “lifetime warranty” for whatever that’s worth . I’m seriously considering investing in a quality water filtration system to remove the clorine anyway .
 

JohnCT

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I just had my house re-piped with uponor. It’s clear tubing with red letter (hot) and blue lettering (cold). The plumbing co who installed it gives a “lifetime warranty” for whatever that’s worth . I’m seriously considering investing in a quality water filtration system to remove the clorine anyway .

It should be *so* easy to chart the type of water on failing pipes, but I suspect manufacturers are keeping this all close to their vests because of impending lawsuits. It seems that if chlorine is a factor, people with Uponor pipe on a chlorine system would love to know this in order to mitigate the chlorine.

My house needed repiping because low pH swiss cheesed the copper, something that doesn't affect PEX. Chlorine has little effect on copper but more so on PEX.

Someone here had a repipe of Uponor for leaks and he had sections of pipe that were yellowed as if they were chemically burned but other sections from the same house that remained white. This to me indicates that there are some variances in manufacturing, perhaps some sections more susceptible to chlorine than others. I'm sure this will all come out at some point.

John
 

Jeff H Young

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I think it depends how big and widespread the issues are I could hardly expect a company to make a public statement describing details and reasons for a failure on one in a million fails 1 in 100,000 1 in 10,000 hard to keep secret and have to go public.
Lifetime warranty on what? my guess is the quality of thier labor but not on the quality of the manufacture product nor the labor on failed manufacture product not due to thier labor practice, probebly dosent include drywall paint or damage from leaks eithere
 

JohnCT

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I think it depends how big and widespread the issues are I could hardly expect a company to make a public statement describing details and reasons for a failure on one in a million fails 1 in 100,000 1 in 10,000 hard to keep secret and have to go public.
Lifetime warranty on what? my guess is the quality of thier labor but not on the quality of the manufacture product nor the labor on failed manufacture product not due to thier labor practice, probebly dosent include drywall paint or damage from leaks eithere

I don't disagree, but saying nothing doesn't improve anything either. If we've learned one thing about the web, it's that a big percentage of the tiny percentage of people with issues will become public knowledge - making a very minor problem seem like a major problem.

John
 

Jeff H Young

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I don't know what you mean and maybe I'm not clear Its a major problem for those affected but I personally don't condemn all PEX or even all red PEX as bad at this point but this info is concerning. I would like more to be found out so we can get on with repiping homes known to have defects . example if everything that was delivered to a certain state sold between certain dates is bad . it would be great if they could all get repiped , go through and repipe entire tracts be great for some companies and dry wall paint and stucco patchers
 
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JohnCT

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@Disnyfan1 What have you been able to find out? I am having the same issue. I am on my 11th leak.

You might want to start your own thread on this in case Disneyfan isn't around, but these problems are odd. The vast majority of Uponor (is that what you have??) installations are trouble free and leaks are extraordinarily rare. Most pros who have been installing this product for years have never seen one leak.

So this is the odd part - Uponor leaks are rare, yet those who have a problem don't have one just one leak, they have *many*, which begs the questions: is this a bad lot? Is this example on a water system with some peculiar chemistry, etc. Were your leaks at the connections or just in random places on the pipes?

Do you have any pictures of the sections that were removed?

John
 

Naatu

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Hi @Disnyfan1 @Mgreen063

Looks like I am also in the same boat and searching for Uponor landed me here. My house was built in 2016. Over last year, I had about 15 leaks. Hot water carrying Uponor 3/4" Red PEX pipe - pinhole leaks in different section of the pipe, every 4-6 weeks. I spent lot of money already, after lot of frustration, I decided to repipe the house and asked for some quotes. All the plumbers I asked for a quote immediately asked me to file a warranty with Uponor and told me that there is a problem with the Uponor pipes and one of the plumber in Altanta area claimed that their company is doing 1-2 Uponor repiping projects every week!!!

I have filed my first claim in August 2022 and sent the sections of PEX pipes that were cut to fix the leaks to Uponor. It has been a frustrating experience so far, Uponor keep on dragging without any conclusion. Since the initial claim, I had several more leaks and more claims were made. There was site visit by one of the Uponor field person to verify the conditions at home, more than 2 months ago. Then Uponor sent a mail saying their computers were hacked for a month. For more than 2 months, only response is "evaluation is in progress".

The warranty says if you repipe on your own, they won't reimburse. Every time a new leak develops, they are asking for that section of pipe to be sent to "complete evaluation". But they don't complete the evaluation in time before next leak occur. In few weeks another leak is happening and they are asking to send the part again to "complete evaluation". It looks they are playing a game to to frustrate customers. it has been terrible to deal with water leaks, 15 times dry walls/ceilings were cut and I have small kids and entire family is frustrated with leaks, water mitigation loud sounds for 3-4 days and repair process. I am concerned about potential mold development. However, Uponor seems unmoved by the plight of the customers. Never in my life dealt with such terrible customer service. I have not heard anything other than "evaluation is in progress" to my weekly emails.

(I had several evaluation by qualified plumbers to find out why leaking are happening, water pressure, water temperature, every faucet and every equipment connected to plumbing system was checked several times. No issues identified. House has recirculation system and I even installed a timer to shut circulation for nearly 9 hours every night, still pinhole leaks are happening).
 
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GrumpyPlumber

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Pex A was the first pex I ever used 20 years ago, the idea of stretched plastic making the seal just didn't sit well with me.

I remember over the years arguing here and on other forums that pex was garbage, but it didn't take long before I was forced to start bidding jobs in pex, the price difference is a massive competitive disadvantage.

That said, I opted for barbed Pex B rather than the expanding type A, which is also a problem with the constricted fitting ID's causing problems, especially with shower valves.

I've tried CPVC on jobs I'd otherwise use Pex for, after about ten years it starts to get brittle which makes it less than ideal for exposed/trafficked areas, the irony is that despite being brittle it's pressure rating increases. (according to Flowguard)

Personally, I wish we all just went back to copper.
 

JohnCT

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Pex A was the first pex I ever used 20 years ago, the idea of stretched plastic making the seal just didn't sit well with me.

The seal is the best part. Expanding the PEX makes a seal that is virtually operator proof and tool proof. The leaks people are getting with Uponor is not restricted to the connections, but anywhere on the pipe.

John

I also prefer not only copper, but sweated copper. Do that and I'll see you in 75 years..
 

JohnCT

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Jeez... looks like bad batch from Uponor. @Disnyfan1, @Mgreen063 and me are all from Atlanta area!!!! Just realized.

Or, it could be a municipal water issue in the Atlanta area - has Uponor also taken a water sample(s) in addition to failed pipe samples?

I'm sorry for what you are going through. I had to repipe because my copper got swiss-cheesed by low pH water, and waking up to a kitchen ceiling soaked with water still gives me nightmares. I can't imagine what you are still going through now.

One leak could be a nicked pipe on installation, two leaks indicates a problem. Photos of failed pipe posted on this forum have always shown the failed pipe with yellowing. It's been speculated that chloramine added to municipal water is burning the PEX chemically. Do you have any close up pics of your failed pipe you can post?

FWIW, a lot of pros on this site have been installing Uponor for decades with zero leaks, so it must either be a batch problem or local water issues.
 

leaking_upnor

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Hi @Disnyfan1 @Mgreen063

Looks like I am also in the same boat and searching for Uponor landed me here. My house was built in 2016. Over last year, I had about 15 leaks. Hot water carrying Uponor 3/4" Red PEX pipe - pinhole leaks in different section of the pipe, every 4-6 weeks. I spent lot of money already, after lot of frustration, I decided to repipe the house and asked for some quotes. All the plumbers I asked for a quote immediately asked me to file a warranty with Uponor and told me that there is a problem with the Uponor pipes and one of the plumber in Altanta area claimed that their company is doing 1-2 Uponor repiping projects every week!!!

I have filed my first claim in August 2022 and sent the sections of PEX pipes that were cut to fix the leaks to Uponor. It has been a frustrating experience so far, Uponor keep on dragging without any conclusion. Since the initial claim, I had several more leaks and more claims were made. There was site visit by one of the Uponor field person to verify the conditions at home, more than 2 months ago. Then Uponor sent a mail saying their computers were hacked for a month. For more than 2 months, only response is "evaluation is in progress".

The warranty says if you repipe on your own, they won't reimburse. Every time a new leak develops, they are asking for that section of pipe to be sent to "complete evaluation". But they don't complete the evaluation in time before next leak occur. In few weeks another leak is happening and they are asking to send the part again to "complete evaluation". It looks they are playing a game to to frustrate customers. it has been terrible to deal with water leaks, 15 times dry walls/ceilings were cut and I have small kids and entire family is frustrated with leaks, water mitigation loud sounds for 3-4 days and repair process. I am concerned about potential mold development. However, Uponor seems unmoved by the plight of the customers. Never in my life dealt with such terrible customer service. I have not heard anything other than "evaluation is in progress" to my weekly emails.

(I had several evaluation by qualified plumbers to find out why leaking are happening, water pressure, water temperature, every faucet and every equipment connected to plumbing system was checked several times. No issues identified. House has recirculation system and I even installed a timer to shut circulation for nearly 9 hours every night, still pinhole leaks are happening).
I just joined this forum for this specific issue. I have a rep(engineer) coming today. I'm on my 9th leak as well. Same issue. I'm in Atlanta as well. My home was built in late 2019. Please update us on what happened. I've been really patient with the plumbers because they have been doing all 9 calls without any charge. But the house is a mess. I want to give Upnor a chance but I don't like what I am finding out on web.....
 
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