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Thread: Why would NIBCO/CPI Durapex PEX split (lengthwise) and leak?

  1. #76
    DIY Junior Member Darwin's Avatar
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    The hot water side has also split on Durapex in my home about four feet away from the water heater flooding attic, bedroom, two closets, and garage. I think I see a trend here!

  2. #77
    DIY Junior Member collegestationplumber's Avatar
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    Default dura pex is faulty

    Well folks I ended up here looking for answers. We own a major plumbing company in Texas. We have been in business for 40 plus years. From football stadiums to fixing faucet drips. We do it all. Just for the record we used dura pex tubing for a period of time and 3 - 4 years later it is coming back to haunt us. Splits along the tubing just like the ones in the pictures in previous post. It has been a total nightmare. From leaks in the slabs to ceiling leaks and major damage all over the place. It is all the same dura pex made by nibco before 2006. The tubing was flawed from the very beginning. It is unfortunate for the hard working plumbers out there besides us and the homeowners etc.. that have to go through this. We plumbed numerous very large apartment complexes with dura pex. We have spent 40 years as a credible and reliable company and suddenly something like this raises questions to our customers. And who can blame them ?

    I found some good info here and hopefully it will help in our decision in which road we will take to resolve this problem. We purchased it from Moore supply, the major national plumbing supply, and they are helping greatly with the cost etc.... Afterall they sold it to us.

    I hope this helps. I realize most of the post are dated back a bit. The more info the better.
    Last edited by collegestationplumber; 09-10-2010 at 07:46 PM.

  3. #78
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Anyone know what manufacturing method was used to make that stuff (-a, -b, or -c)? If it was pex-c, if strict quality control methods aren't used, it can be brittle or incompletely cross-linked, and thus weak. To a degree, that can happen with the other methods, too, but pex-a, and pex-b are more expensive to make and the conversion process to link the molecular chains tends to be more complete (with pex-a usually the winner, but the most expensive). Get the temperature control or process duration off just a little with -c, and it quickly affects the reliability of the product.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  4. #79
    DIY Member Drivesme's Avatar
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    At this point why would anyone allow this stuff into their house?
    I'm going to re-pipe my supply lines and I'm going with the tried and true copper.
    100 years of use compared to 20? No brainer.
    Yes the up front cost is a bit more, but considering the damage and problems 3 years down the road, seems cheap.

  5. #80
    Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek Mikey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drivesme View Post
    At this point why would anyone allow this stuff into their house?
    One reason would be if tried and true copper failed. We see a fair amount of that in older under-slab copper.

  6. #81
    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    Copper dies too especially thinwall. Worst of all it freezes and blows up very reliably.

    Like any Mfg. process, its in the details, and I think only Uphonor has the machines and brains to provide a reliable tube. And now they likely have enough money to survive a class action suit if something starts failing - the small guys just walk off.

    Maybe it was MFG. process "-d" for duh? Or "-gm" - greedy morons.
    Last edited by ballvalve; 09-12-2010 at 03:25 PM.

  7. #82
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Wirsbo has over 2 BILLION feet of their pex-a installed in the USA, and lots more installed around the world over decades - it is not new. Good quality control and process control, and the stuff works. Buying the cheapest stuff is not always the best choice. Some local water supplies just eat copper - so, it is not always the best choice.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  8. #83
    DIY Junior Member collegestationplumber's Avatar
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    Actually I made a mistake when I stated
    "It is all the same dura pex made by nibco before 2006"

    As some of you already know it was made by Consolidated Plumbing Indutries which was bought out in 2006 by Nibco. After talking to Nibco they say they have nothing to do with the problem before 2006 which they are fully aware of. After doing some digging around online I found that former employee of CPI Tom Coe Director of Technical Services is now Product Manager at NIBCO.

    Tom Coe
    http://www.linkedin.com/pub/tom-coe/12/92b/691

  9. #84
    DIY Junior Member Eric Jackson's Avatar
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    Just to add to this thread, My home was built 5 yrs ago and i have lived in it for 4. As with everyone else my pex pipe burst within 10 feet of the water heater, not just once but 5 times. After getting the pipes fixed we found out that we had no expansion tank, we had one installed immediately. To no avail my pipes has burst again 3 more times.I am so mad I can't think straight. I guess there is no end in sight for the consumer anymore since no one is at fault when things like this happen.

  10. #85
    Journeyman/Inspector Inspektor Ludwig's Avatar
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    I'm curious to know about where the pex was ran. The only time I've ever seen pex split like that was when the pipes were run through the attic space. We had quite a boom of pex over the last 6 years and this past winter was a bad one for freezing and wouldn't ya know, we had a record amount of pex failures. All failures were a result of pipes ran through the attic and allowed to freeze then thaw, then refreeze and thaw over and over again, after about 4-5 winters the pex would end up splitting and always on the hot side and from different manufacturers. We'll just have to wait and see what happens this year!

  11. #86
    DIY Junior Member kelleycrew's Avatar
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    Default This is ridiculous!

    It the same scenario over and over yet no one is responsible? I find this truly un-American! CPI sold out to NIBCO yet they only bought the assets and not the liability?!!! Sounds like some slick lawyering to me! I have also heard that CPI basically closed up shop because they knew they had a recalled & inferior product. They then re-merged as NIBCO with the same employees. They essentially changed their name. This all seems criminal to me.

    Our pipe burst when we were out of town - hot side about 4 from the tank. Cost us $400 for plumbing, and I'm scared to get an estimate on our buckled hardwoods. Surely there is some type of legal action we can take! From what I understand CPI made dead-ends for all legal action. Maybe a class action suit would get their attention. Anyone game?

  12. #87
    DIY Junior Member Eric Jackson's Avatar
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    Yeah, we will join you. Only problem is finding a lawyer willing to go through it with no money up front, cause I can assure you after I pay for my plumbing to be replaced and my drywall repaired I will not be able to pay the paper boy let alone a lawyer.

  13. #88
    DIY Junior Member Eric Jackson's Avatar
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    The first leak was in my garage in the ceiling and it was insulated, next 4 times were within 10ft of the first leak. The next leak was on an inside wall, my next leak was under the house before going on the other inside wall of my home. The last leak I have had which was a day before my original post was on that same pipe run as the previous leak, at top of an inside wall. All of the leaks have been splits in the pipe, none have come from fitting failures.

  14. #89
    DIY Junior Member Delbert's Avatar
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    Same situation, same pipe, same company (Nibco) - durapex (terra cotta color) on the hot water side. House was built in 2006, Lake Wylie, SC. Split 3 times in four days all within 10 feet of the hot water tank. Contacted Chubb Ins. they gave me a claim number. They didn't return my call, 6 days later I contacted them and they sent me to a Nibco rep., Gail Weaver, who sent me to their technician, (who is to return my call tomorrow) but not before she told me that Nibco, Inc. was not resposible for any product made before 2006. I ask who was and she replied that company is no longer in business. It flooded our basement and a few rooms on the main level. I'm afraid the pipe will keep splitting further on down the line if repairs are made. My homeowners ins. will only pay for the damage made and I will have to file a new claim for any future damage. Who knows what that will be and the cost of higher premiums has me spitting fire!

    I'll join a class action suit - any takers?
    Last edited by Delbert; 10-25-2010 at 11:50 AM. Reason: spelling

  15. #90
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    If the company is out of business, who are you going to sue? Even if you were to win, there are no assets to recover from?
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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