Two weeks ago we talked about the different types of repiping materials. Between copper and different types of PVC, there are a whole host of great materials that can last for years to come when you’re in need of a pipe replacement. Now we must beg the question—when would you need to replace your pipes?
Well, as a team of professional plumbers in Boynton Beach, FL, we’d tell you to replace your pipes for a number of reasons. If you’re dealing with constant leaks or if your plumbing system doesn’t work as it should, then we suggest you replace your plumbing system.
However, another reason why you might want to consider replacing your pipes is if you’ve got lead pipes in your home. Many older homes that were built before 1960 have lead piping, and it can be bad for your home in a number of different ways.
What’s Wrong With Lead Pipes?
Lead pipes were a go-to material for pipes for a long time. It’s a plentiful material that’s found all throughout the earth’s crust, and it also happens to be both sturdy and malleable. Even some ancient civilizations used lead pipes because of how easy the material was to find and how easy that could turn it into plumbing equipment. That being said, we began to discover something with lead in the 1960s.
Through a lot of scientific research and study, it became clear that lead poisoning can be a real issue when people consume water that’s been traveling through lead pipes. Lead leeches into the water and the effect of lead in your body can be extremely negative. All of a sudden, that cheap plumbing material that everyone has been using turns out to be poisonous!
Don’t worry, most municipalities and homes had their lead pipes removed as soon as this research came out. But some homes still have lead pipes, even lead water pipes, that need to be replaced.
How to Tell If You Have Lead Pipes
There are two easy ways to tell if you have lead pipes in your basement that need to be replaced. Find the pipe which you suspect to be lead and do one of the following:
- Scratch the pipe with a penny or quarter. If you see a silver streak, while the rest of the pipe looks dark grey, then it’s definitely a lead pipe.
- Many metals in our homes are magnetic. Take a fridge magnet and try to stick it to your pipe. If the magnet does not stick to your pipe, then it’s probably made of lead. Lead is not magnetic.
Get Your Pipes Replaced Today
We know what you might be thinking. “All of my water pipes are made out of copper or PVC, but my sewer pipes are made out of lead. I should be fine, right?”
Not really. The truth of the matter is that if you have lead sewer pipes, your health isn’t in immediate danger, but those pipes are likely over 50 years old and should be replaced. Lead hasn’t been used as plumbing material for a long time, which means that your lead pipes are way past their expiration date.
At Admiral Plumbing Services, LLC, you can count on nice people and super service. Call our super-friendly team today!