Uponor PEX problem ALERT

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Tuttles Revenge

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I am not a plumber, but I don't know why anyone would put any supply plumbing under a slab. It's not really a thing in my area of Canada. I can't imagine the bill for getting someone to tunnel under your slab to fix a leak.
Under slab plumbing is as common as slabs and plumbing. What isn't so common are fitting branches under slabs. Usually we daisy chain all the tubing so that all the fittings are above the slab and only an un cut tube is under. From my experience and knowledge the only fittings approved for under slab are Brazed copper joints

PS - Are those light “white scratches” concerning on the bottom of the blue line?
Unless they are Deep, they don't concern me.
 

JohnCT

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I am not a plumber, but I don't know why anyone would put any supply plumbing under a slab. It's not really a thing in my area of Canada. I can't imagine the bill for getting someone to tunnel under your slab to fix a leak.

The only option would be to jackhammer the slab up. I don't get it either.

John
 

Johndoejohndoes

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One more question for you guys…this was how my PEX was originally coming out of the slab. Notice only a little red tape by the slab.

643C65A0-6B36-45F2-8031-8FBE94DE63B3.jpegD3398869-6D4B-48BB-A66A-B86BECF96CB6.jpeg

It looks like they taped it up a little more as they’re about to put the block exterior on. Does the tape being wrapped only to the middle of the copper colored connector look concerning? Or fine?

FE9D4B33-BB6B-4689-9FF8-809CB5904ADA.jpegC08BA220-AE05-4E61-B08A-9699804BEB91.jpeg

Thanks!
 

Tuttles Revenge

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The tape is to prevent direct contact of cement to the PEX. I like to have more cushion than that but it looks loosely wrapped which may help with the minor expansion contraction..

They probably added more to block UV rays.
 

Johndoejohndoes

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The tape is to prevent direct contact of cement to the PEX. I like to have more cushion than that but it looks loosely wrapped which may help with the minor expansion contraction..

They probably added more to block UV rays.
Thanks!

And how bad is it that the manifolds are under the slab? An inspector approved this, so I have to assume it’s allowed even if it’s not the recommended way of doing it.
 

Tuttles Revenge

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Its only bad when they fail... So probably not your problem.. but someone one day will curse the heirs of whomever installed those.
 

WorthFlorida

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Living in Florida for 32 years you hear about slab leaks but most leaks past the meter are caused by tree roots lifting up the PVC pipe and separating a cemented coupling. I fixed a few for family and friends. Around 1994, a neightbor with about a five year old home did develop a leak under the slab. He was able to hear the water making a hissing noise at the water heater. It was the hot water line and he had to have to house re-plumbed for hot water through the attic. Fortunately, in a way, it was a single floor home. The home was all copper, so any kind of pipe can leak.
 

Jeff H Young

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they do it because its easy and allows for the aboveground to be clean not a bunch of big honkin headers in the wall. not crazy about it nor seen it but Ive heard of it I think either pex or cpvc was legal like that underground.
Of cource only California requires full sleeving on Pex underground . Since I do little pex Im uncertain on enforcement.
I dont know how bad this Pex "problem " is but when everything you read on line is from lawyers filing suits you gotta take it with little regard unless your the kind that belives everything an ambulance chaser prints. Ive only heard of handfuls of issues, ive heard of complete tracts repiped here in So Ca that were plumbed in copper Im not affraid of copper being bad. anmd Ive fixed many a copper leak one yesterday in the middle of a 3/4 inch copper 90.
BTW theres tons of slab leaks from copper under slab many factors not the least of them are workmanship. there is no substitute for good workmanship you can avoid slab leaks by doing crappy work in the attic and then you got attic leaks. Id rather have neither
 
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Johndoejohndoes

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One last question…my PEX was installed on Feb 10th and covered up on Feb 20th.

The issue is the ends of the PEX are still exposed to UV.

1C0F227C-A764-4241-B424-DFA702C803D2.jpeg

The roof won’t be on until later March, which means it could be exposed to direct UV for 40 days.

I’m not sure if the builder is going to cover it, but I’m wondering how concerned I should be, since this Uponor AquaPex is rated for 1 month in the sun.
 

Jeff H Young

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good question I dont work with pex that much I wouldnt leave rolls in the sun for very long but we dont cover the drain pipe coming through slab for sun protection of cource its not under pressure.
my guess is though if they poured slab on 10th if they planned to protect then whats the wait? looks like they arent covering them. I think it would be good practice to shield it. whether anybody does i dont know jobs in my area i dont see it shielded. but if it lasts 25 years instead of 60 does anyone care ? or how are they going to know if they care but really dont know the consequences? So you might sound pickey but it might be a reasonable request I dont really have a grip on how serious this amount of exposure is.
 

Weekend Handyman

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One last question…my PEX was installed on Feb 10th and covered up on Feb 20th.

The issue is the ends of the PEX are still exposed to UV.

View attachment 81653

The roof won’t be on until later March, which means it could be exposed to direct UV for 40 days.

I’m not sure if the builder is going to cover it, but I’m wondering how concerned I should be, since this Uponor AquaPex is rated for 1 month in the sun.

I am not a plumber.

I would not want to exceed the manufacturers spec ... I feel like that's just common sense.

I would ask Uponor what the best practice is in this situation.
 

JohnCT

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Face it, many builders are not mental giants. Invisible things like "UV" exposure mean nothing to them.

If this were my build, that PEX would have been covered with tarp the *minute* it was laid down, and after the slab was poured, the exposed ends would have been covered with taped up black garbage bags or insulation noodles and duct tape.

PEX will last 50-70 years but if you ask me, exposing it to the sun for 30 days will halve it's life. Of course, the builder won't care what happens 20 years from now..

John
 

Jeff H Young

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Face it, many builders are not mental giants. Invisible things like "UV" exposure mean nothing to them.

If this were my build, that pex would have been covered with tarp the *minute* it was laid down, and after the slab was poured, the exposed ends would have been covered with taped up black garbage bags or insulation noodles and duct tape.

PEX will last 50-70 years but if you ask me, exposing it to the sun for 30 days will halve it's life. Of course, the builder won't care what happens 20 years from now..

John
pretty much what I think as far as sunshine affecting the life. I wouldn't be paranoid if its out for a day or 2. I think that if you can't see the damage its easy for someone to assume its fine .
They build differently in different areas When I was doing tract work running copper we might be running copper before roof is sheeted and surely before walls are closed up. if running PEX you don't shield it when roughing in do you? of course just having roof sheeted should be far safer
 
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JohnCT

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When I was doing tract work running copper we might be running copper before roof is sheeted and surely befor walls are closed up. if running pex you dont shield it when roughing in do you?

Good point. I'm not a pro, just flip remodels and the last (well, only) home I built was my own. The PEX I've done has always been indoors and I add insulation noodles to any pipe that gets indirect light.

If I was doing a new construction, I'd probably still do copper, but if I was doing PEX, I would try to schedule the plumber later although I realize that the logistics of high volume contractors doesn't always allow for that kind of timing. Adding the insulation noodles would be a cheap and effective way of reducing accumulated UV.

John
 

Jeff H Young

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looks same as we use for copper , poly sleeve and I guess this is what we use on PEX underground because my code requires sleeving underground
 

Kjuris11

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I'm shocked at the failure, and frankly, am more shocked the transparency of the defect by Uponor (good for them). I'm not a pro, but it seems that whenever I read about a defect being submitted to a company, they usually blame the water, installation, etc. Someone else on this forum posted similar pictures of Uponor PEX a few months back IIRC. Hopefully, it was confined to a small batch.

John
I’ve had two leaks that have occurred right behind the stop cocks inside of the wall where the Uponor PEX line feeds through a black sleeve that attaches to the side of the 2 x 4 in the wall. In each situation, the Uponor PEX has split The first occurring on January 6 or 7th of 2022 and another one that just occurred on April 7 of 22 in my 2015 home.
I have had a considerable amount of damage and expense with all of this and don’t know what to expect at the other locations in my home.
I have contacted the builder and they have told me to contact the manufacturer Uponor.

756E1D43-7729-47B4-B8E6-270C17430D22.jpeg
 

John Gayewski

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I’ve had two leaks that have occurred right behind the stop cocks inside of the wall where the Uponor PEX line feeds through a black sleeve that attaches to the side of the 2 x 4 in the wall. In each situation, the Uponor PEX has split The first occurring on January 6 or 7th of 2022 and another one that just occurred on April 7 of 22 in my 2015 home.
I have had a considerable amount of damage and expense with all of this and don’t know what to expect at the other locations in my home.
I have contacted the builder and they have told me to contact the manufacturer Uponor.

View attachment 82806
Yeah you'll have to send it to them to have it analyzed. They will tell you what happened. Generally it's user error.
 
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