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 In Best Home Services, Plumbing

Are you aware of your copper pipes?

When we think of chlorinated water, we mainly think of swimming pools. But did you know chlorine is one of the most efficient ways to kill deadly germs and pathogens in all public water sources? All of the water that flows into our homes has been treated with chlorine for this reason. While this chlorination is no harm to humans, it may actually be harming the copper piping in your home.

Chlorine is corrosive to copper

corroded copper

Chlorine reacts with the piping to create the compound Copper Chloride. This has a corrosive effect on the inside of the pipes and slowly erodes the piping over time. Eventually, chlorine eats all the way through the pipes and creates pinhole leaks, which if left unchecked, can cause a myriad of problems within the home. For a while, Type M copper was used in homes. Type M is a thinner tubing that is incredibly susceptible to corrosion and pinhole leaks over time. Type M copper is generally no longer used in home repairs for this reason and was replaced by the thicker Type L- which is more resistant to corrosion. The most alarming risk of corrosion is breakage and flooding. But, did you know pinhole leaks- while tiny- can cause immense amounts of damage to a home?

What is a pinhole leak?

copper patina

A pinhole leak is a small puncture in a pipe that occurs due to corrosion. The leak starts out small, but this tiny hole is more serious than it sounds. If left unnoticed, pinhole leaks can create:

  • Mold
  • Mildew
  • Biological Growth

These thrive around pinhole leaks because of the damp, dark environment provided by pinhole leaks that saturate the insulation. They also cause immense water damage to ceilings and walls. How can you know if you are susceptible to pinhole leaks? If you look at your copper piping and see any green spots of patina on the outside of the pipes, you are at risk. Homes with Type M copper piping need to be repiped to prevent damage.

How can I reduce my risk of pinhole leaks and corrosion?

Replacing Type M copper piping with Type L or PVC will help reduce your risk of pinhole leaks and corrosion. Chlorine has no effect on PVC, which makes PVC the best choice when repiping your home. If a repipe cannot be done, installing a whole home water filtration system can also reduce your risk of corrosion. A whole home water filtration system filters out:

  • Chlorine
  • Chemicals
  • Iron
  • Minerals
  • Sediments

Having this system reduces the chlorine in the water and lessens the effects of corrosion on your copper piping.

Whether you’re in Naples, Fort Myers, or Sarasota, if you have copper piping in your home and you’re concerned about corrosion, our team of highly qualified plumbers are here and ready to help. We will send a licensed professional right to your door to conduct an inspection of your copper piping and recommend the best course of action to fit your needs. Give us a call at 239-284-1472 or 941-564-0004 today, or request an appointment below!

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