How to Patch Leaking PEX Piping

Plumber working with PEX tubing
  • 1-8 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 50-300
What You'll Need
PEX tubing
PEX insert fittings (brass or plastic)
PEX pipe cutter
PEX stainless steel support clamps
PEX crimping tool
PEX de-crimping tool

Available in Europe for decades, PEX piping was introduced to the United States in the 1980s. It is used as plumbing pipes in homes. It costs less than traditional copper wires, weighs less, is flexible, and employs less labor. However, these pipes cannot be used for outdoor plumbing jobs because the UV rays may spoil the material and cause serious damages.

Manufactured from cross linked polyethylene and brass, these pipes, when used with PEX tubing, offer brilliant water plumbing alternatives to traditional methods. Due to its unique property of temperature and chemical resistance, PEX piping is actively used in water systems for both residential and business properties.

Installation is conveniently carried out by pinching a copper ring onto an inserted PEX tube fitting over a pipe. Brass or stainless steel fittings clamps are also used for making these connections. Unlike copper piping, PEX piping is resistant to rust build up and therefore less likely to corrode from acidic water. It has a comparatively longer shelf life before the need for replacement. Unlike boisterous copper piping, PEX piping has a smooth internal surface and is flexible. Therefore it's a preferred method of quieter water transportation. Despite its durability and flexibility, PEX pipes can give way to water leaks. Know the procedure to mend PEX piping leaks.

Step 1 - Inspect the PEX

For repairing the leaking PEX piping; investigate the PEX brand that has been installed during plumbing of the house. Purchase the corresponding repair coupling, coupling barb, and crimp rings. Remember to purchase crimping tools as the couplers tend to raise the finish floor level and require crimping to adjust to proper levels for smooth water supply around the house.

Step 2 - Re-Check the Leakage

Inspect the entire PEX leakage with a soap solution. Spray the soap solution onto each joint and the ones with leaks will create small bubbles.

Step 3 - Repair the Leak

PEX lines

Use stainless steel clamps and insert fittings to repair the leak. Cut open the joint with PEX pipe cutter insert fittings and rejoin with clamps and screws.

Insert fittings are either brass or plastic and readily available at Hardware shops or at a local farm store. It's important to note that brass fittings are more durable than plastic.

Step 4 - Crimp the PEX Tubing

PEX tubing

Once the leak has been repaired, it's time to put the PEX tubing back into shape. The repair causes uneven water level which would affect the complete plumbing of the house. To fix the problem, a PEX crimp tool, pipe cutter, and PEX de-crimping tools must be used.

To start the process, create a joint by cutting into the tubing with PEX pipe cutters. Slip the crimp ring over the ends of the tubing and push the fittings into the tubing. Slide the crimp ring to the edge and pull the crimp handles to open and place the crimp rings and finally force the rings to close tightly.