plumbers-Water Main Line ReplacementMister Plumber in Toronto, Etobicoke, Scarborough, North York specialize in the replacement and installation of main water service lines, the line that brings fresh water to your home. This pipe starts at your water meter and travels underground, through your yard and comes into your home either through your basement wall, your crawlspace, or through the concrete in your slab. In older homes, this pipe is made of copper, pvc, galvanized steel, or the dreaded “blue poly.” In the ground, copper oxidizes (think green rust). Galvanized steel rusts terribly, releasing rust particles into your drinking water. Not to mention that all that rust causes potentially serious leaking issues. PVC has a tendency to crack with temperature changes. And blue polybutylene? Well, if you aren’t one of the hundreds of thousands of homeowners who suffered through this plumbing nightmare of a product, we’ll give you a quick summary.

Blue polyethylene (later replaced with a similarly faulty product called BlueMax) is a type of plastic water pipe designed to be a cheap alternative to copper plumbing. It was, until homeowners started experiencing high water bills and pools of water in their yards. It was then that we learned that blue poly was particularly susceptible to pinhole leaks and cracking due to the natural chlorine content of our water. The chlorine attacked the walls of the pipe, weakening it to the point of small pinholes, and sometimes complete breakage. There was a large class-action lawsuit filed against the manufacturer of blue poly in order to reimburse all the homeowners that were forced to have their waterlines replaced due to the faulty product. This lawsuit is now over and is no longer in effect.

It is because of these experiences with other materials that we install all of our new water lines in a product called Black Poly. Known to plumbers as PEX (cross-linked polyethylene), or p.e. pipe, this material is what blue poly should have been. Completely flexible, black poly safely expands and contracts with temperature changes, is impervious to chlorine and other minerals, is rust-proof (being plastic), and is an all-around tough product. We have personally installed over thousands plumbing waterlines in this material, with zero recalls due to product integrity. We also use brass fittings to connect the pipe to your water meter and house plumbing, eliminating plastic fittings’ tendency to crack under stress. Black poly is also much less expensive to produce than copper, often saving you, the homeowner, hundreds of dollars on plumbing installation costs.

Speaking of installation, we know what you’re thinking. “You’re going to have to tear up my yard, making a mess!” Not true. We use a trenchless, boring technology to install your new plumbing waterline with minimal damage to your yard and landscaping, often leaving you wondering if we were ever there. Sometimes, depending on the nature of your yard or landscaping, we have to make a narrow trench from the meter to your house, or at least part of the way. This is due in part to tree roots, large rocks, or other obstacles that simply get in the way. Nevertheless, we will leave your yard in excellent condition. Due to our boring technology, we are also able to safely avoid your buried utilities, such as electricity, cable, and gas lines. Our installation includes, if necessary, penetrating your basement wall in place of your old service line to ensure that the new, high-quality waterline extends all the way into your home, not stopping short just outside. We will also flush your new waterline to ensure that no dirt, clay, or any other small particles make their way into your home’s water system.

Two signs that you may need to replace the supply line from the water main to your house:

  • You are experiencing loss of water pressure, or
  • Your front lawn has turned into a swamp

Older Toronto homes often have galvanized iron water lines, which will corrode inside over time, causing loss of water pressure. In a worst-case scenario, this corrosion will cause the pipe to start leaking, flooding your lawn and driving your water bill to astronomical heights. You can hire a Mister Plumber to replace your water supply pipe (you may need to take out a loan), but if you are reasonably handy and can recruit a friend or neighbor to spend a Saturday helping you, you can do it yourself. Here’s how.

  1. Excavate around the water main at the street and at the place where the water pipe connects to the house. You can plot the path of the supply pipe from there. You will need to connect these two excavations with a trench down to the level of the existing pipe, cutting the sod and laying it aside. To make a trench a sidewalk, attach a rigid piece of pipe to a garden hose and use it as a water-powered drill
  2. Calculate how much new pipe you will need, along with any fittings and connectors. Use PVC Schedule 40 pipe, and if the old galvanized pipe was ¾” in diameter, consider upgrading to 1″ PVC. Purchase the materials you need at your local hardware or home improvements store, and remember the PVC glue and primer.
  3. You can leave the old pipe in the ground. The trench should be deep enough to prevent freezing, but you may want to wrap the new PVC pipe in insulating tape to be safe. By all means use the insulating tape anywhere the new pipe is exposed.
  4. Shut off the water at the main. Disconnect the old pipe at both ends. You will probably get water in your trench as the water stored in the house pipes drains out.
  5. Lay the new PVC pipe in the trench, using connectors and PVC glue between each length of pipe. Attach the pipe to the main and the house with the new fittings.
  6. Turn on water at the main and check for leaks. If all is well, you can now fill in the trench and replace any sod you had to remove.

Now pour yourself and your helper a cold beverage and toast your new, leak-proof water line.

Looking for plumbers? Mister Plumber in Toronto, Etobicoke, Scarborough, North York specializing sewer repair, upgrade waterline, lead pipe replacement, water service upgrade, drain cleaning, backwater valve installation, lead pipe replacement, re-piping and emergency plumbing, Mister Plumber uses the latest technology to effectively troubleshoot and quickly repair any plumbing problem and offers a fast response and free estimates. Call us 416 939 1530 or fill the form for Online Free Estimate.

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