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What is Galvanized Plumbing?

Written on: June 10, 2024

Trust the plumbers at Williams Energy to take good care of your home’s plumbing

plumbing Marshfield, MA As a homeowner, understanding the infrastructure of your home is crucial for maintaining its value and ensuring safety. One area that often gets overlooked is the plumbing system. Among the various types of plumbing, galvanized plumbing is a term you may have heard of but not fully understood. So, what is galvanized plumbing?

Galvanized plumbing refers to pipes made of steel that have been coated with a layer of zinc to prevent rusting and corrosion. While this method was widely used in the past, it has its own set of challenges that homeowners need to be aware of.

All about galvanized plumbing

Galvanized plumbing became popular in the early 20th century, particularly from the 1920s to the 1960s.

Before its advent, lead pipes were commonly used, posing serious health risks. Galvanized steel pipes offered a more durable and safer alternative at the time. They were extensively used for both residential and commercial water supply lines and remain in many older homes today.

While galvanized plumbing was a significant improvement over lead pipes, it’s not without its own set of issues. Over time, the zinc coating can erode, leading to several challenges.

Signs your home may have galvanized plumbing

Identifying whether your home has galvanized plumbing is essential for proactive maintenance. Here are some signs to look out for:

Discolored water: If your tap water has a brownish or reddish tint, it’s a strong indicator of rust in your pipes.

Low water pressure: Consistently low water pressure might be due to clogged galvanized pipes.

Visible pipes: Check exposed pipes in your basement or utility room. Galvanized pipes have a metallic, silver-gray appearance.

Age of home: If your home was built between the 1920s and 1960s, there’s a higher likelihood it has galvanized plumbing.

What are the alternatives to galvanized plumbing?

Given the challenges associated with galvanized plumbing, many homeowners opt to upgrade their plumbing systems. Here are some modern alternatives:

Copper: Known for their durability and reliability, copper pipes are a popular choice for both water supply and drainage systems. They’re resistant to rust and corrosion.

PEX (Cross-Linked Polyethylene): PEX pipes are flexible, easy to install, and resistant to scale and chlorine. They’re also less likely to burst in freezing conditions.

PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride): Commonly used for drainage, waste, and vent systems, PVC pipes are lightweight, inexpensive, and resistant to corrosion.

When upgrading your plumbing system, the skilled plumbers at Williams Energy will work with you to get the right pipes for your home that work with your budget.

The licensed, experienced plumbers at Williams Energy can help you with any plumbing service you need. Contact us to learn more.