If you are installing a PEX plumbing system in your home, the installation of the PEX manifold will probably be one of the last steps in completing the project. However, properly installing the manifold in a PEX system is also one of the most crucial steps to creating an efficient water supply system in your home.
The manifold is the control center for your home's water supply. It is connected to the main inlet pipe into your home and directs the flow of water to other supply pipes that lead to bathrooms and kitchens. Fortunately, installing a PEX manifold is not difficult at all and make an excellent DIY project. This simple step by step how-to guide will walk you through the process.
Step 1 - Select Installation Location
In the area where the PEX water pipes come into the basement, choose a location to install the PEX manifold. Choose a lumber stud or area of the concrete wall that is about eye level and easily accessible.
Step 2 - Attach Lumber to Wall
If you'll be installing the PEX manifold system on a wall, nail a piece of 2 x 4 lumber to the wall with concrete nails. This will serve as the base and mount for the PEX manifold.
Step 3 - Mark and Drill Holes
Measure the mounting holes on the PEX manifold and transfer the measurements to the piece of lumber. Then, use the drill to drill pilot holes where you will mount the manifold.
Step 4 - Mount PEX Manifold
Insert wood screws through the mounting holes in the PEX manifold and secure them into the stud on the wall.
Step 5 - Attach Inlet Valve to Manifold
Connect the main inlet valve to the PEX manifold by connecting the fittings and tightening them. Use Teflon tape or pipe joint compound to prevent leaks.
Step 6 - Install Ball Valves
Use an adjustable wrench to install the ball valves on the female fittings on the PEX manifold. Use plumber's Teflon tape to avoid leaks in the fitting connections.
Step 7 - Connect Outlet Hoses
Connect the outlet hoses to the PEX manifold by connecting them to the ball valves. In order to connect the hoses to the valves, you'll need to slip a PEX crimp ring over the end of the hose and then crimp it on to the valve using the PEX crimping tool.
Step 8 - Finish Up
After you've connected the outlet hoses to the PEX manifold, you can continue by connecting the inlet valve to your water heater (if you are using the system for hot water), or you can connect the inlet valve to the main water supply pipe that enters your home. If you'll be connecting the manifold to a water heater, you will need to install copper tubing and sweat the connections to the inlet valve. If you'll be connecting the system to the main water supply pipe in your home, you'll need to install a metal-to-PEX "T" coupler and then hook up the coupler to the inlet valve.