Have you ever wondered what the lifespan of your plumbing is? If your like most people, you probably haven’t given it much thought until now. Most people are blissfully unaware of their plumbing until they are forced to deal with a major plumbing emergency. Being mindful of how old your plumbing is and how long it is anticipated to last can help you prepare for future repairs and prevent catastrophic plumbing problems from happening. Here is the average lifespan of your plumbing.
When it comes to the lifespan of your plumbing, one of the most important ages to pay attention to is your water heater. When a water heater gives out it can cause a big mess, cause a lot of damage, be a major inconvenience, and be a costly repair. Tank storage water heaters last about 10-15 years, with their tankless counterparts lasting around 20. If you water heater is getting on in years, chances are it is planning its retirement. To check the age of your water heater, check the manufacturing stamp. The date the water heater was manufactured is usually located near the serial number. Regular maintenance can help extend the lifespan of your water heater.
Toilets themselves will last a lifetime, they really only need to be replaced if there is a crack in the bowl or tank, or if you are wanting to upgrade to a more efficient model. However, the inner working parts of your toilet will wear out over time. This includes the handle, flapper, tips levers, fill valves, and wax seals. If you notice your toilet running or phantom flushing, it may be time to replace some of the parts. By replacing the faulty worn out parts, the toilet should be good as new.
Like toilets, faucets can last a really long time because many of the parts can be replaced over time. Gaskets, flanges, escutcheons, and aerators are all parts of the faucet that can wear out over time. Some signs of a faulty part include leaking, lack of flow, or water pressure issues.
The garbage disposal is one of the hardest working parts of your plumbing system. Due to the nature of their work, emasurating food particles so they can pass through your plumbing, they typically last about 10 years. Some signs it’s time to replace your garbage disposal include: constant clogs, the need to reset more often, and a foul odor that doesn’t go away. You can make your garbage disposal last longer by following operating procedures. Watch what goes down the drain, always operate with running water, and avoid overloading it.
One of the most important parts of your plumbing system are your pipes. They are located out of sight out of mind, so many people really don’t give much thought to them. Water supply lines are typically make out of copper or brass these days, with older plumbing being made out of galvanized steel. Copper pipes last about 70-80 years, brass lasts about 80-100 years, and galvanized steel last 80-100 years. Galvanized steel is not longer used, the last it was used was in the 1960’s, so if you have galvanized steel plumbing, you may be nearing the time to replace it.
Drain pipes are made out of PVC these days, which lasts 25-40 years. Older homes may have cast iron drain pipes that last 80-100 years. PVC overtook cast iron pipes in the 1970’s, because it was easier to install, less expensive, and cheaper to produce. When it comes to repiping, it can be a costly and messy repair. Know that you have options when it comes to replacing your plumbing pipes. Many homeowners choose to pipelining because it is trenchless so the yard doesn’t have to be torn up, and it it is more affordable. Talk to your plumber about your options.
When it comes to your plumbing, remember to take care of it. Watch what goes down the drain, and stay up to date on regular maintenance. The better you maintain your plumbing the longer it will last. Concerned about the lifespan of your plumbing? Contact the experts and Lesco to have a thorough plumbing inspection performed.