There are many advantages of PEX tubing in plumbing applications, but if you are going to buy PEX pipes, you should know the difference between the types of PEX pipe. Each PEX type has different advantages and disadvantages. You need to know which PEX is the best.
In this article, we are also going to talk about the fitting of the PEX pipe, so this article is going to be very useful for you. You should learn about these types of PEX when deciding which ones to use.
What Are the Different Types of Pex Pipe?
PEX plumbings are used as a drinking water supply line. You may know about it, but if you go to the market to buy PEX pipes, you will find different types of PEX pipes. You may be wondering which pipe is best for your use. So we will discuss the main types of PEX Plumbing pipes.
There are three types of PEX pipes as follows:
- PEX-A Pipe
- PEX-B Pipe
- PEX-C Pipe
You can read the following article to know more about these types.
1. PEX-A Pipe
PEX A is cross-linked using the peroxide or angel method. The word angel, Named after dr. Thomas Angle, the inventor of this method. The PEX-A is the most flexible and the softest of all the PEX types.
PEX A can be used in all home water supply lines, kitchens, and bath fixtures. Kinks can only be repaired in this type of pipe. You can usually use a hit gun to repair kinks. It is the most resistant to cracking.
The PEX A has thermal and elastic memory, making a strong connection between the pipe and the fitting. It is more expensive than PEX B and PEX C.
2. PEX-B Pipe
PEX B is the most common type of PEX pipe, which is cross-linking using the “Celine” or “Moisture Cure” method. It is easy to install and has properties such as freezing and cracking resistance. It has the highest chlorine and oxidative resistance of all PEX types, so it mainly uses areas with high chlorine content.
PEX B is tougher than PEX A and is the cheapest of all PEX types in terms of price. It has less thermal memory than PEX A, which makes it impossible to repair kinks with hit guns. If there are kinks in the pipe, you have to cut it and use couplings. It is also often called steam or moisture cross-linking.
3. PEX-C Pipe
PEX C pipe is cross-linking using the electronic irradiation method. PEX C is the hardest of all PEX types, so it’s much harder to work with. It does not have a resistance to freezing, which is why its use in cold areas leads to pipe cracks.
PEX C pipes are used only for minor repairs. Since this type of PEX does not resist kinks, couplings are always used to repair it.
How to Make PEX Connections?
There are many different types of PEX fittings, but crimp fittings and compression fittings are two of the most common types. But, if you are going to install PEX pipe, you should know about all the fittings. We looked at the types of PEX pipes above, and now we will discuss how to connect PEX pipes.
Pipes can be connected with the following five fittings:
- Crimp fittings
- Compression fittings
- Push-fit PEX fittings or Sharkbites fittings
- Expansion fittings
- Press fittings
More information about PEX pipe fittings is given below.
1. Crimp Fittings
PEX Crimp Fitting is a type of PEX fitting used in PEX plumbing. These fittings are commonly used to make connections in PEX-to-PEX as well as other pipe materials.
Crimp fittings are handled by standard ASTM F1807 when they are made of brass and by standard ASTM F2159 when they are made of polymer or plastic.
Copper crimp rings, clamp tools, or PEX crimp tools may be required to use crimp fittings. O-rings, with their metal fittings, can also be used to make seals with PEX tubing. Metal fittings are handled by standard ASTM 2434.
Crimp fittings can be used with all types of PEX tubing except PEX-AL-PEX. These fittings are the cheapest and most widely available PEX pipe fittings.
2. Compression Fittings
PEX compression fittings are used for both PEX pipes and PEX-AL-PEX pipes. The design of this fitting includes a compression ring, compression nut, and compression insert.
The compression ring slides on the tubing by placing a compression insert inside the end of the PEX tubing. Then, it is tightened with a compression nut and completely sealed.
Compression fittings are easy to work with, as they are easy to install and remove. But, they can prove to be more expensive than crimp fittings.
3. Push-Fit PEX Fittings or Shark bites Fittings
Push fittings are commonly referred to as “shark bites fittings.”It can be used for all types of plumbing pipes, including PEX. Only the usual tools are needed to attach the push-fit fitting to the PEX tubing. Push fittings are controlled by standard ASTM F2854.
Push fittings are very easy to remove and can be reused. Due to this, plumbing can be done quickly and efficiently with these fittings.
Push-fit fittings are usually made of brass. It can be used with all types of PEX tubing, CPVC, and copper pipes.
4. Expansion Fittings
PEX Expansion fittings generally come in two types, In which a PEX expansion ring or a compression ring is used, respectively.
ASTM F1960 fittings use an expansion PEX ring that is temporarily extended by pulling the tubing and sleeve to insert the fitting. When the tool is released, the sleeve returns to its original size and can be held securely.
Expansion fittings can usually be made of polymer or brass. These fittings can only be used with PEX-A tubing.
5. Press Fittings
PEX press fittings are installed using the PEX press tool. The fittings are designed in such a way that the outer crimp ring is not required. The PEX pipe is placed on the press-fitting sleeve, and the tubing is squeezed using the PEX press tool and locked into the sleeve.
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