You’ve probably heard that water is the ultimate solvent. Given enough time and enough flow, water has the potential to dissolve anything, including rock. When it comes to the metal plumbing pipes in your building, you should keep watch for corrosive water, which is water that has a pH of less than 7. Water with a pH value of less than 7 is typically considered corrosive or acidic water.
Corrosive Water and Copper Pipes
Copper pipes are designed to last up to 50 years and sometimes longer with proper maintenance. It is estimated that more than 85 percent of all homes in the United States contain copper piping, and there’s a good chance that your residential building in Chicago also contains copper piping. While copper piping is a great choice for all types of plumbing applications due to its longevity, resistance to bacterial growth and ability to transport both hot and cold water, it does have some drawbacks.
If your building was built prior to the 1980s, lead solder was probably used to seal the joints of your copper pipes. Over time, the lead in the solder can leach into your water, especially if you have water with a low pH. Water with a pH of less than 7 can also lead to pinhole leaks, blowouts and water damage. This is because acidic water slowly eats away at the interior walls of your plumbing pipes, creating pits.
Combating Corrosive Water in Chicago
If you suspect the water in your Chicago residential building is corrosive or acidic, you should take steps to prevent chemical leaching from your copper pipes while you develop a plan to restore the safety of your potable water. One of the ways you can limit the contaminants in your water is by periodically flushing the system. Flushing the system involves turning on the water at the taps and running it until it becomes extremely cold, indicating that fresh water from the municipal water supply has entered the pipes.
However, flushing the pipes is not a long-term viable solution for keeping your potable water safe for drinking, bathing and cleaning. If you haven’t had your water tested for its pH level and any dissolved contaminants, you should collect samples and have them tested. If your water comes back with a pH of less than 7, consider having your plumbing pipes lined with epoxy, which is a solution for stopping the further deterioration of your corroded pipes and preventing lead, copper and other chemicals from leaching into your building’s water supply.
Preventing Corroded Pipes with Epoxy Pipe Liners from Nu Flow
Here at Nu Flow, we offer epoxy pipe liners and coatings for potable water pipes and drain lines. Our liners and coatings are designed to seal your pipes, which helps stop pinhole leaks and further damage from acidic water. The process of installing the liners also has benefits. Before we can install your liner or epoxy coating, we must remove all the corrosion and any debris from inside the pipes, which helps restore the interior diameter. This improves water flow while adding life to your plumbing pipes.
To learn more about how we can help prevent chemical leaching with our pipe lining services, call us at 815-790-9000.