We’ve all heard the classic saying, ‘Nothing lasts forever”, and this is true with the pipes that deliver
your water to the various points in the building. The composition of this piping would very much depend
on when the house was built, and if it is very old, the water pipes might be a hazard. Houses built in the
early 20 th century often used lead piping, and this should be removed if it is still in operation, as lead is a
hazardous material that should not be in contact with your water supply.
These were commonly used in the 1970s, and are now known to become very brittle and prone to
rupture, and they are not installed today. If your plumbing consists of this material, it would be better to
have the entire system replaced with PVC or galvanised steel, which will last indefinitely. If you are in
Western Australia, and in need of a Perth plumber, www.peterstannardplumbingandgas.com.au are the
people to talk to.
PVC Drain Pipes
Modern solutions prefer the use of PVC for all waste and drainage pipes, due to its durable and long
lasting properties, and most reputable plumbers would recommend PVC as the best material. The Joins
themselves are more likely to be compromised than the actual piping, and if the sealant was not
correctly applied upon installation, leaks will surely follow as the system is always under pressure. These
pipes will last indefinitely, and if there is ever a leak that you cannot locate, modern plumbers are
equipped with state of the art technology in leak detection, and by calling him out, you will avoid digging
unnecessary holes and causing damage.
Your mains water might be delivered via copper piping, and this would last at least 70-80 years, and with
regular inspections, any leaking joints can quickly be repaired, avoiding costly repair bills. The major
variable with copper piping is the acidity of the water, which can cause corrosion to set in, and water
that is high in mineral content can also affect copper piping in a negative way.
The pipes are lined with zinc, which is very unreactive, and these should last up to 70 years, but in the
event the zinc layer breaks down, rust can set in, and this can seriously damage your water system.
Most construction projects over the past three decades have used PVC for all drainage piping, as this is
not only cost-effective, it is also highly durable, and galvanized steel would be something of a rarity
The importance of regular inspections and maintenance cannot be over emphasized when talking about
plumbing, and blocked drains and leaking pipes can cause serious damage, so call your local plumber at
least once a year, and have him pop over and inspect your system. Prompt action will ensure no
permanent damage, and those untraceable leaks can easily be found with hi-tech plumbing equipment
that all plumbers carry, thus avoiding costly repairs.