flexible pvc pipe. ugh....please comment if you can

banana_fannaJune 3, 2011

My pool build has been on hold all spring due to rain. Today they dug the trenches and laid the pipe while I was at work. Came home and it's all flex pipe. Truth be told, before today I never realized there was anything else besides rigid. I've spent the last hour researchinge researching online and I don't like what I'm reading RE: flex.

We live in Michigan, if that makes a difference. The contract says FACE PLUMBING MATERIALS: PVC

Doesn't specify rigid or flex.

So what to do. It's not buried yet.

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    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 11:32PM
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Thanks, jimbar.

Yeah, that's the first site that popped up when I googled and it's what scared me too. It's 5 a.m. EST and I've been tossing 'n' turning since 4:30 thinking this over. There are defenders of flex, especially for this region, but....

Gah. So what to do now? I'm not the most confrontational person in the world and I certainly will address it with PB today - assuming I see or hear from him - but I wonder how much it'll cost to start again?

I hope the PB's here will comment, too. I need to make a decision before they fill. My husband, thus far, has allowed this pool to be my baby but he was googling like a madman last night.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 5:13AM
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Does your contract state anything about using rigid?
The only place I would consider flex is on the above ground pump equipment.

Thats just me. What does your PB say about it ?

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 6:24AM
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The contract just states PVC. Grrr. I'm so mad at myself for not knowing to investigate further. So many details, ya know?

I haven't talked to him yet. It's now almost 9a.m. and I'm calling him this morning. I was hoping to have some info to back myself up with when he starts explaining why they use PVC. Wish me luck.

Thanks for your response.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 8:35AM
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Kind of like heat bending pipe. You will have those that say there are no problems and others that will say i will never heat bend pipe. What is a consumer to do

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 10:28AM
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banana fanna,
I quit using flex 20 years ago.

It tends to grow in warm conditions(spa plumbing) and contract in cold conditions. This movement creates problems if the pipe is near the steel or shell of the pool because it can rub and cause leaks. When buried directly in the ground it can expand against small bits of rock or concrete that might get dumped in the trench with it.

It's more expensive than sch 40 hard pipe but it may save some fittings and the argument may be that it creates more efficient water flow.

My personal experience is that flex pipe is vulnerable to leakage if it happens to be stacked incorrectly between manufacture and installation.

It's not recommended for above ground use because it can grow to 2-3 times its natural diameter in hot summer temperatures. I'm in an area where summer temps can reach 105-110 degrees on occasion.

If your PB insists on using flex underground, then you need to insist that it be placed in sand bed and shaded with sand. And further, that it never penetrates the shell or any other concrete. Good luck.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 11:36AM
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Make them change it even if you have to pay the cost. Digging up the deck and replaceing when leaks from bugs eating into it. It will more than pay back the cost of changeing it now. I don't know how many pools I have dug up skimmers because of that stuff having pin holes in it. And never use it above ground.It's use is for portable hot tubs several years ago some local builders thought it was the way to go for pools because of ease of installation and less resistance of water flow that backfired in leaks very quickly.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 8:21PM
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Rack Etear

Since flex pipe is never really straight, the resistance could be more than a rigid system with 90s

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 9:33PM
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The only place I use flex is with portable spa repairs. I have seen too many termite holed, sun dried, collapsed failures to use anything but pressure rated pipe and fittings.


    Bookmark   June 5, 2011 at 9:14AM
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