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Old 02-16-2015, 09:40 AM   #1
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Pex or copper on shell off resto?

Ok, so I'm reading all these threads on Pex, and sounds like everyone loves it for retrofitting, due to more cost effective and ease of assembly. I understand manufacturing has gone to pex- I assume for these same reasons. I just read that homebuilders are even moving to pex.

That said, Manufacturing and Building are not usually known for using the "best" product, but rather the cheapest and easiest.

I look at all the Pex and all I see is plastic waiting to get brittle, kinked, sliced, chewed, poked by a screw.... and mechanical crimp fittings waiting to leak. My copper was in the coach 38 years- how long as Pex been around, and what will be the next latest and greatest product when Pex becomes obsolete?

My question is... If cost or assembly is no an issue, isnt copper better? The LPG lines are all copper- if "movement and rattling down the road" were an issue with copper, why fill it with flammable gas? Why isnt Pex used for LPG?

I have an empty shell with plenty of room to do what I need. I've put in SOOOOO much more work than I ever planned on my coach, and I want to put in the best product I can so I dont have to mess with it later.

I cant see cost being an issue- its only a 27 foot trailer. A hundred bucks or 2 at this point is a drop in the bucket.

Commets please? Would love to hear both sides of this.

Thanks!
Mic
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Old 02-16-2015, 09:45 AM   #2
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"What would Wally do?"
If Pex had been around when he was building Airstreams I would bet that he would of used Pex. Personally I would if rebuilding an old trailer.
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Old 02-16-2015, 10:44 AM   #3
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There are brands brands and qualities of PEX.

Viega is the brand I use. I think it is the best. If copper makes you happy, go with it.
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:03 AM   #4
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Hi Mic,

Freezing pipes are a concern for us northerners
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:04 AM   #5
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Another vote for PEX. I used it when redoing my Bambi II and plan to do the same in my FC. Copper solder joints are better suited to stationary locations in my opinion and copper is also not very freeze tolerant compared with PEX.
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:38 AM   #6
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I plan on using PEX in my Airstream because, as others have stated, it is more freeze tolerant than copper for water lines. Freezing is not really an issue with propane lines because propane is a gas and occupies less volume as it cools (Charles Law). Water expands when it freezes wreaking havoc on copper lines. Proper freezing weather precautions and winterization are still necessary, of course, but I'm going with PEX for the extra peace of mind.
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:48 AM   #7
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What is used in a new AS? Just curious!
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Old 02-16-2015, 12:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
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What is used in a new AS? Just curious!
I have a 2009 27'FB and it uses plastic pipe throughout. I suspect it's more of an economic issues than anything else. Cheaper to buy, less labor cost to install.
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Old 02-16-2015, 03:27 PM   #9
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I've used PEX (Home Depot Shark Bite) on my re-plumb throughout, and just love it! Really easy to use, it lays very flat against the curves, never kinks, you cut the hose with a utility knife, fittings are re-usable, what's not to love?

I'll take modern plastic over metal any day... when it comes to things like water or tankage. You couldn't pay me to put a metal tank in.
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Old 02-16-2015, 03:46 PM   #10
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Pex or copper on shell off resto?

If cost were no object I would still use pex as it is much more forgiving when subjected to freezing. Easier to install too IMO. I've run miles of both.
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Old 02-16-2015, 04:41 PM   #11
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What is used in a new AS? Just curious!

Pex throughout the new Airstreams.
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Old 02-16-2015, 06:00 PM   #12
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Pex vs. Copper

My 2014 FC is in the shop right now fixing a very slow water leak behind the cabinetry in the kitchen sink and behind the heater assy. I can also flex the PEX connections visible below the sink and get water seepage. Yes everything is going to PEX. And yes to my 67 year old mind, I wouldn't trade copper for anything. Cost for a few short lines in a trailer is nothing. If you're doing the labor, then it's free and fun besides. I wished I had copper piping in my Airstream. "The harder right vs. the easier wrong." For what it's worth.
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Old 02-16-2015, 07:02 PM   #13
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My Safari will get PEX with brass fittings. Pex is the technology that replaced the old failure prone polybutylene. It has proven to be a very reliable system when install correctly. BTW, a similar variant of Poly Ethylene pipe is used for gas line, but only underground. (Gas code thing).
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Old 02-17-2015, 08:44 PM   #14
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Great posts. Any more opinions for or against Pex or Copper?
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