If you’re looking for an alternative to copper, pex is a great option. It’s a safe, durable pipe that can hold high water pressure and resist corrosion. It also doesn’t face the same risk of bursting in cold temperatures, making it perfect for Illinois’ winters. It has many practical benefits too, including a shorter wait for hot water and less mineral scale buildup.
What is PEX?
PEX (polyethylene cross-linked) pipes are made from a type of plastic called HDPE (high-density polyethylene). They are manufactured by exposing HDPE to radiation or by physically forcing HDPE molecules to chemically and permanently connect to each other at points called “crosslinks.” This process creates the X-shaped structure that gives PEX its strength.
There are three main types of PEX pipe: PEX A, PEX B, and PEX C. PEX A is the most popular and is used for all plumbing applications. It has a high bursting pressure and a good resistance to freeze cracking. PEX B is a little more expensive than PEX A but has the benefit of increased resistance to chlorine in water supplies. It also has a great coil memory, returning to its original shape when it expands.
All PEX pipes must meet NSF/ANSI/CAN 61 standards to ensure they are safe for drinking water. This standard requires a chemical analysis and toxicological evaluation of any chemicals that leach from the pipe into your drinking water to make sure they’re not at levels that could negatively affect human health. SharkBite PEX meets these standards and has been tested to be free of BPA (bengal phenol ethyl acetate) and other harmful contaminants. pex pipe