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Question DetailsAsked on 9/21/2015

i bought an old mobile home , do I need to change or replumb the entir house since it is an 31 year old home?

it show some leak on the water heater but corrected. the plumber suggested to replumb the whole house?

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1 Answer


Have you had a number of leaks - like one every year or two or more ? A single leak at a water heater would not necessarily mean you need full replacement, especially as the fittings at the top of a water heater are commonly about the first place to corrode out. Did he show you badly corroded pipes (not the fitting, which commonly corrodes first, but a length of pipe) or was mostly filled up with buildup ? And do pipes in the normal runs of the house show corrosion, or only that one place ?

Generally - if your plumbing is galvanized or black steel pipe it is probably getting pretty close to your life unless your water has always been soft water. If plastic depends on what type - whether it was one of the defective PEX or black butyl flex products that are failing fast, or was a good PVC or CPVC that might last another 50 years. Copper and brass (which is very rare except at sink fittings) commonly starts showing leaks around 20-30 years at specific points with reason for corrosion or where a joint was soldered poorly, but commonly goes 40-50 years before going bad in general, unless you have corrosive water. If it is generally quite green with copper corrosion bloom many places, probably time though in humid locations that can be jusat a surficial issue not fatal. But if basically good looking with just a few localized greenish or whitish corrosion points, might be worth it to just correct those points preventatively and hold off on a complete replacement.

Did he give you a quote ? Some mobile homes have VERY little piping, basically a sink drop and a run to the bathroom/water heater and that is it, some are more distributed and like a house. Certainly, if the quote was fairly low - $500 sday - not worth getting a second opinion for about $100-150 probably - cheaper to just replace it if you feel it is past its prime.

Before dropping a thousand or more $ for a larger mobile home, if you are not confident it is reaching its end you could have another plumber check it out.

And if you do get it replaced, be sure attention is paid to correct heat tracing and/or insulation as applicable to your location.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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