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Should You Be Replacing Pipes When Renovating?

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Should You Be Replacing Pipes When Renovating?

Are you preparing to do extensive renovations? If so, you should think carefully about what projects you want to complete, and how those goals will affect your budget. Before you start picking out paint colours and new bathroom fixtures, you should first consider how your home’s present plumbing infrastructure will affect the process of your dream home makeover.

In some cases, you might need a plumbing renovation, or it might be practical to replace plumbing and redo the pipes altogether. This may seem like an intimidating undertaking, because after all, buying and installing pipes can be expensive and time-consuming. However, if you want to get the most out of your renovation, it may be time for those old pipes to go.

Here are a few signs that you should consider investing in new pipes when completing your renovation projects.

The Pipes Are Outdated and Worn Out

Up until now, you might not have thought much about the condition of your pipes, especially if they haven’t been causing you any trouble. If you have never had a problem, you may be thinking, “why fix what isn’t broken?”

But if you are renovating your house, it is safe to assume your home is probably older, meaning your pipes may be old as well. Unfortunately, when renovating your home, old pipes could get in the way of your project plans. Old pipes may not be compatible with tools and parts available today, and finding replacements might prove to be much more difficult and expensive than just scrapping the old pipes altogether. It might be time for some home renovation plumbing.

Between your showers, sinks, and toilets, your plumbing system is used every day. Though the pipes it relies upon are built to last for years, eventually they will wear out. If you are tearing down walls when renovating, this is a good time to check on them. When investigating your pipes, be sure to check for suspicious spots. Brown stains on the walls and ceilings can reveal hidden leaks and areas of high moisture that will need to be addressed. And if your running water has a brown or yellow tint, there could very well be rust or decay within the pipes.

One final (and very simple) test you can perform to better understand the condition of your pipes: just run your hand across them. Galvanised copper pipes in need of repair or replacement will be craggy and course to the touch. These issues may seem minor for now, but in a short amount of time, they can cause much larger issues, including flooding. If you suspect that your pipes are no longer in tip-top condition, it may be best to replace the pipes now to avoid future problems and blocked drains.

Your Creative Vision Conflicts with Your Current Plumbing Setup

When completing a major renovation, you have to keep your home’s infrastructure in mind – that includes the pipes. If your creative vision conflicts with your present plumbing situation, you do not have to abandon your dream, you just have to innovate. This is especially important with bathroom renovations and any wet areas.

For example, imagine you are trying to remove your closet and instead expand your bathroom to install a shower where your closet previously was. It’s unlikely the correct pipes are in your closet space for this extensive work, so to turn your bathroom renovation into a reality, you will likely have to make some plumbing changes. In cases like this, redoing your entire pipes might make the most sense.

You Need to Move Your Hot Water System

When renovating your home, you may come across the need to move your hot water system. If it was in the laundry room, but you now want it in the garage, you will need to hire a professional to help you uninstall and reinstall it in the new area. The process of moving a hot water system is not difficult, however, it can only be completed if your pipes are set up properly.

When moving your hot water system, you can introduce a “dead leg” in your pipes. A dead leg is considered to be the water that is cleared from your pipes as you wait for the water to warm up in your shower or sink. Because no water flows through these spaces, a dead leg can become a breeding ground for harmful bacteria in the stagnant water. (And even if this does not occur, the long delay for warm water can be quite irritating!) If moving your hot water system causes a dead leg, you will need to redo your pipes because if you leave it in your system, this dangerous bacteria can flow into your water system and make your family sick.

If you do have to change your pipes to avoid a dead leg, this may also be a good time to consider investing in a more energy efficient hot water system. Water heating is the second largest use of household energy after space heating and cooling. If you currently have an electric or gas storage water heater, there are more efficient options out there. Solar water heaters, heat pump water heaters, and electric instantaneous water heaters are more far more efficient. If you are already changing the pipes during your renovation, it might be a good time to also make the switch on your water heating system.

The experienced team at RD Plumbing Solutions can help advise you on your hot water services. Call for a free quote from our fully qualified Master Plumbers!

You’re Looking to Improve Water Pressure

If you’ve been struggling to increase the water pressure in your bathroom or kitchen, then the odds are good that you’ve already learned about and tried simple solutions such as replacing the shower head or dissembling and cleaning your sink fixtures. If these efforts have failed to make a serious improvement, then installing new, appropriately-sized pipes could make the difference you’ve been looking for. As this article from This Old House explains, larger pipes mean less friction on passing water, which in turn results in higher water pressure throughout your home.

Need guidance with any plumbing concerns before you get started on a big renovation process? RD Plumbing Solutions are your renovation plumbing Adelaide specialists. Get in touch today for a free quote on our renovation plumbing services!

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