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Copper Vs. PVC: The Pros and Cons of Popular Pipe Materials

HVAC Copper Pipe
Functional plumbing is something that modern homeowners expect from their properties on a daily basis. If something goes wrong with your home's plumbing system, this could inconvenience your entire day. A functional plumbing system needs a solid foundation of durable pipes.
Pipes are responsible for transporting water and waste to and from your home. Pipe damage could render your plumbing fixtures useless. This is why homeowners should carefully think about the type of pipe that serves their home.
If you need plumbing repairs or pipe replacement, you should weigh the benefits and drawbacks of both copper and PVC pipe materials before making your selection. The right pipes will preserve the function of your plumbing system well into the future.

Copper Pipes

The construction industry utilizes copper pipes for a variety of applications. Plumbing systems and HVAC systems in newly constructed homes will often have copper pipes that carry refrigerant and water throughout these systems.
Copper pipes might be the best option for your property when improving the efficiency and performance of your plumbing system.
Benefits of Copper Pipes
One of the driving reasons behind a homeowner's decision to invest in copper pipes is the longevity that these pipes can provide. Copper is an extremely durable material that will withstand corrosion and deterioration over time.
Homes located in areas where natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, or floods strike regularly can benefit significantly from copper plumbing systems. The copper pipes are capable of remaining structurally sound when exposed to the extreme pressure that often accompanies these natural disasters.
Drawbacks of Copper Pipes
Although copper pipes can be a great addition to any residential property, some drawbacks might deter some homeowners from investing in copper plumbing.
For example, the price of copper has increased in recent years. Rising metal prices have resulted in an increased cost of copper plumbing pipes. Many homeowners do not want to pay premium pricing for plumbing upgrades.
Another drawback might be the fact that copper pipes are from non-renewable resources. Most pipes are from recycled copper, but all copper is non-renewable and might not be attractive to homeowners trying to reduce their carbon footprint.

PVC Pipes

You have probably seen a series of white plastic-looking pipes underneath your sink or running through your basement. These pipes are likely a material known as PVC. PVC, which is officially called polyvinyl chloride, is an extremely durable type of vinyl that is a popular alternative to copper when piping residential plumbing systems.
Benefits of PVC Pipes
Since cost is a deciding factor when repairing or replacing plumbing components, PVC is a popular choice for homeowners. PVC can be manufactured using less energy and cheaper materials than copper pipes. As a result, PVC pipes are more affordable.
Another unexpected benefit that helps drive the popularity of PVC pipes is their lightweight design. Lighter materials means that longer lengths can be manufactured. This reduces the number of joints that might spring a leak in the future.
Drawbacks of PVC Pipes
PVC can be a great alternative to copper pipes, but some areas exist where these pipes might not perform the best.
PVC is a rigid material that has the ability to flex a bit, but not as much as copper. PVC pipes will often be more susceptible to damage during a natural disaster. Copper pipes will also outlast PVC pipes, which means that you might end up paying more over the life of your plumbing system.
Contact Accurate Plumbing for help determining if PVC or copper pipes are right for your home. We are happy to answer all your questions and concerns.