Old iron pipes..


Old 05-25-12, 03:52 AM
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Join Date: May 2012
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Galvanized pipes?

Hi, I'm purchasing a duplex that is about 100 years old.. but I've noticed that the "water flow/pressure" in the bathroom stinks mostly hot.. and in examining the pipes.. I've found coatings of metals or filaments seem to have taken out about 1/3rd to 1/2 the area inside the pipe..

I'm not sure if this is cause the pipes are iron?.. or are galvanized like this sites talks about..?

Delta Repipe USA » Delta Mechanical – Galvanized Repipe

I was wondering what can be to done to clear that out fix that?

I could imagine inserting some kind of spinning brush might do it?

I could also imagine some kind of chemical treatments might begin to restore the coatings in the pipe?

The coatings are believed to be contaminants/pieces of metal rust.. I dunno? from existing water heater.. but they form up solidly in the pipe pretty much..

In this duplex we've estimated that both pipes are about 50 years old.. ironically it seems like both were re-plumbed at the same time.. but one sides hot water pipes are in worse condition then another.. (colds water pipes = seem fine) only hot seems to have contaminants

Last edited by theemaster; 05-25-12 at 04:16 AM.
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Old 05-25-12, 04:28 AM
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Old 05-25-12, 04:56 AM
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Okay, if I've been reading correctly..

- chemicals really can't fix these old pipes though vinegar was recommended without consequence
- it also says chemicals or even blowing it/drilling it out may cause damage to the pipe or make it spring a leak cause it's old
- it also says that horizontal pipes (which I have one) also are far worse than pipes that are run with the earth/ground
- and basically there's no way to really drill it out cause who has a drill bill that is 12 feet long for a section in the wall or the access to it..?

Which really means the only real long term solution is to re-pipe?
Old 05-25-12, 09:24 AM
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This is the heating forum and what you are describing is a plumbing problem.

Fifty years ago galvanized steel was the norm for residential potable water piping. It was significantly less expensive than copper and plastics had, for the most part, not yet approved for the usage. Galvanized steel today is the worst material to use for potable water as it does indeed rust and/or corrode internally and that internal corrosion reduces the interior area subsequently reducing the flow rate.

While there are some companies that advertise being able to clear galvanized steel piping and then add a proprietary coating to prevent further corrosion the truth is that a full repipe is the only thing that is guaranteed to work. Most repipes today are done with PEX, cross-linked polyethylene plastic, tubing.
Old 05-25-12, 12:20 PM
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Sorry, if I have the wrong forum..
Old 05-25-12, 05:49 PM
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Thee, no problem really on the wrong forum... you don't have to start a new thread somewhere else, I can move ya....

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