PEX System

PEX Plumbing & Radiant Heating

Plumbing and Radiant Heating are the most important part of our daily life. PEX plumbing system is quite new to our society but has a significant impact on our daily life.

PEX TubingPEX Cutter
PEX Crimp ToolPEX Clamp Tool
PEX FittingsPEX Manifolds
PEX Crimp RingsPEX Clamp Rings

So, what are PEX Plumbing and Radiant Heating? So, let’s jump out to find what makes it great. Let’s start with PEX Plumbing.

## PEX Plumbing

PEX is a full form of High-Density Polyethylene(HDPE). It has become the most popular piping system for different types of applications. It has several advantages over other pipes.

It was first invented in Europe around 1968. After around a decade, It came to the USA and the usage of PEX pipe has blown up since then.

This pipe is durable and flexible at once. Yes, it’s a bit odd, but PEX can carry a high load of water supply even in 90-Degree. And also you don’t have to use any elbow connection for this.

Now, it’s get used for resident water supply, radiant heating, temperature-based water supply. Also, it gets used in high-voltage electricity pipe insulation.

After all, not to mention that PEX also works well in sewage/wastewater supply. The natural gas transportation is another odd usage of this piping system.

So, it’s clear that PEX piping has great usage around the industry. It works far better than alternatives like PVC, CPVC, and copper piping. Unlike other pipes, PEX doesn’t get corrosion and holes.

Due to its easy installation, PEX is popular among beginners and professionals.

According to the colorings, the red pipe carries hot water, blue for cold and white for neutral.

## Advantages of PEX Plumbing

Let’s recap some of the advantages of PEX pipe over other traditional pipes.

  • PEX pipe comes with proper flexibility. Due to its flexibility, you can carry the pipes without cutting into pieces. And it can bend up to 90-degree and more.
  • It’s less weighted and easy to transport with minimal costs.
  • The PEX pipe doesn’t need many fittings like alternative pipes.
  • It can merge with existing copper or PVC connection with correct fittings.
  • PEX doesn’t carry heat too much and preserves the energy in the pipes.
  • The pipe doesn’t get rusted with long usage. Also, it won’t create unwanted layers inside.
  • Water flows faster and with little sound in PEX pipes. That eliminates the water noises you hear from usual water supply lines.
  • With blue and red coloring anyone can detect the hot and cold supply line.
  • PEX can bear high-temperature supply up to 120 °C without any effect.
  • It expands when the water freezes inside the pipe. When the water goes back to normal, the PEX pipe goes into the original position. This avoids pipe-freeze breakage.

Needless to say, it’s the new generation piping system. And it’s the future.

## Types of PEX Plumbing

PEX pipes are available in main 3 separate categories. Yet, those category doesn’t define its quality, rating, and standard. Those state the manufacturing process of the pipe.

Here’s all in details.

  • PEX-A: It’s made by Engel method. That means it’s the highest uniform and flexible PEX pipe in the market. It’s known as the best quality pipe and cost more than other categories.
  • PEX-B: This PEX pipe made of the Silane method. It’s the latest invention of PEX piping. It’s a little bit less flexible than “A”, but cost much lesser. Also, it has built-in memory coil that helps it get into the original shape after bending. It’s a recommended pipe for residential and water supply usage.
  • PEX-C: This type of PEX pipe is the result of Electronic Irradiation. So, it’s the less flexible PEX pipe to use. But, it’s suitable for short time usage and where you don’t have to bend the pipe. Thus, it does not have a built-in coil and much cheaper.

By the way, you can also get two types of PEX pipes depending on Oxizen briar. The one with Oxizen briar gets used in the heating system. And the non-Oxigen-barrier PEX pipe gets used in the hot and cold water supply.

## Types of PEX Connections

PEX pipe supports many types of connections. Those lets you create PEX to PEX or PVC and other pipes connection.

Here’s the common type of PEX connection that you can use.

  • Crimp connection: It’s the most used connection in PEX piping. In this connection, we use a copper crimping ring to make a connection with PEX or other pipes. First of all, input the crimp rings into the pipe and insert the fittings. Now crimp the ring on the pipe using PEX crimping tool. That’s it.
  • Clamp connection: The clamp connection use a clamp ring to secure the fittings. It’s a bit cheaper choice over crimp connection. Because the Clamp rings very easy to use. Now insert the ring over PEX and fit the fittings. Take the PEX crimping tool and press it on the clamp ring. It will provide you compelling watertight-seal like, crimp connection.
  • Expansion method: This method works with an expansion tool to make connections. Here you have to insert a plastic crimping ring on the PEX pipe. Then take the expansion tool and insert it into the pipe. Once you expand the pipe up to the mark, set the fitting into PEX. Finally, move the already inserted plastic ring over the fitting aria.
  • Push-fit method: It’s the easiest PEX connection to go with. Primarily, insert the Push-fit fittings over PEX pipe and you will be good to go. This will give you full water leakage protection. You can use the removing kit to remove the Push-fit fittings.

So, those were the PEX connection that you can use all the time. Along with those, you will also find the compression fitting connection. But, this connection costs more than standard PEX fittings. That’s why it doesn’t get used that often.

## Types of PEX Fittings

We have many kinds of PEX fittings in the market. Every fitting are suitable for their specific PEX connection. Most of the fittings are available in brass, plastic or bronze.

Firstly, we have PEX crimp fittings. You can use crimp or clamp rings to set crimp fittings into PEX pipe. It’s mostly used and available fittings in the market.

Then we have push fittings for PEX. This works with Push-to-connection mechanism. it only works with PEX-A pipe. However, you will have a disconnect tool to remove the fittings.

The expansion and compression fittings are only compatible with their respective connection methods.

At last, there’s also a press PEX fittings. Here you can install the fittings with a button push. You would have to use a press tool to complete the PEX fittings.

Most of the time the clamp fittings are the most effective and economic PEX fittings.

## PEX Tools Available

There are different kinds of tools available to help you to work with PEX. Generally, those tools come in combine kit for a fair price tag.

Let’s take a look at all those PEX tools that you will need during installation.

PEX Crimper tool: This is the most used tool for PEX plumbing. It simply lets you crimp any copper crimp or clamp rings on the pipe. The crimper tool comes with two default category. first one will offer you interchangeable crimp heads to work with all kinds of crimp rings. And the other one is specially made for clamp rings. And you can use one tool to press all sizes of clam rings.

PEX De-Crimper tool: You can easily remove the crimp rings using a De-Crimper tool. Place the tool on crimp rings and press hard. Then you can remove the ring. Yet, you can still use the fitting.

PEX Expander tool: Its get used in the expansion method fittings. It expands the PEX sleeves to insert fittings and seal the rings over it.

PEX Cutter tool: This tool lets you cut PEX pipes with the proper angle. You must cut the pipe correctly, before inserting the fitting.

Whether you are DIYer or professional, those tools are great to work on PEX plumbing projects. The price can vary according to the manufacturer. But, can go for kits that come with all those tools including crimping rings.

## Disadvantage of PEX

Although PEX is ideal on the go plumbing solution, it has some downside to follow. Keep those in mind when using it.

  • You must keep the PEX pipe out of direct sun-light contact. It may get weaker if you leave it outside. So, You must shield it from the sun.
  • Sometime you may face problem to connect the PEX to brass fittings.
  • Those are the things to watch out for. Outside of those factors, you will get a great range of facilities.

## Main Usage of PEX Plumbing

We can use PEX pipe on every plumbing situation. But, PEX is mainly popular for it’s hot & cold water supply and Radiant Heating.

It’s extremely popular in residential water supply lines due to its diverse facilities. It’s also safe for drinking waters usage.

Another main application of PEX is radiant heating. The Oxygen-Barrier PEX gets used in this type of heating system. Radiant floor heating is the most used application of this sector.

## Radiant Heating

The Radiant Heating system is the most popular heating system for housing. This home heating system works using reading heating technology. It’s safe, efficient and works great.

In radiant heating, you don’t get to see the heating particles. It radiates the heat to all objects in the room.

Usually, we use different kinds of radiant heating system with own purpose. The option is the radiant floor heating system.

A radiant heating system can work with the air and hydronic(liquid-based) mechanism. You can get an evenly hot feeling throughout the aria.

Above all, this doesn’t create polluted air. instead, it keeps the air clean and oxygen reach.

## Advantage of Radiant Heating

There’s a lot of advantages of radiant heating over the conventional heating systems. With those facilities, the popularity of radiant heating is high of all time.

Here are some of the reasons that make the radiant heating the core of our eyes.

  • It’s safe and healthy than other heating systems. It does not create any polluted or allergic air during heating.
  • Radiant heating consumes less energy thus saves your bill for your heating system up to 10%.
  • Heat-up any specific area evenly to give you thermal comfort. According to CBE‘s research, radiant heating provides save thermal comfort as all-air buildings.
  • Don’t get too hot or cold like another heating system.
  • It’s can maintain a specific temperature for a long time.
  • You can also control the radiant heating temperature using Wifi or other tools.

It would be the best heating solution for your house. It’s also easy to install if you are starting a new project or re-innovate your home.

## Types of Radiant Heating

Currently, there are mainly two types of Radiant Heating are available. First one is Hydronic (liquid-based) and anther is air-based.

In Hydronic radiant heating system, we use hot water to flow under the floor through PEX pipes. The hot water comes from a boiler or other small heating source.

The water-based radiant heating system is economic and powerful. Because it’s needs less power to get an even amount of temperature.

On the other side, Air based radiant heating uses hot airs to work with. At first, we pump the hot air into the floor slabs. Then after some time, the floor starts to get heated. it’s not that efficient heating method to use.

There’s also electrical redient heating available to use. Here you have to install electrical padding under your floor. It uses electrical power to warm up your home. It won’t be a good option as it can cost you the most with the electric bills.

Both Hydronic and air-based Radeient heatings get used on the same applications. We will feature those applications in the next section.

## Applications of Radiant Heating

Radiant heating technology has three types of applications. Whatever the situation, Those are the basic application to work with.

  • Radiant Floor Heating: It’s the most efficient and cheap application for use. PEX pipes are gets installed into the floor to heat the space. Here you will get an equal warm feeling in ever places of the area. The heat comes from the floor and heat all the objects in its pathway. Your room will start to circulate the hot air to make the environment equally balanced. The floor doesn’t get too hot at any moment. And it can keep the temperature consistent throughout the time.
  • Radiant Wall Heating: In this application, you have to install radiating panels at the wall of your house. Due to its position, you can only feel the heat if you are close to the radiation panels. It won’t be your best heating system, as it will need much more energy to heat the area evenly.
  • Radiant Ceiling Heating: It’s the less used application of redient heating. Here you have to install the radiation unit at your ceiling. This method is not suitable for residential use. Most of the time, it get used in warehouse, sports center, and open public places.

So, those are the Redient Heating application that you can go for. Popular places like Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport are using radiation heating method. And the latest building that used radiant heating is Exploratorium of Sun Fransico.

## Suitable Flooring for Radiant Heating

In Radiant floor heating system, you can use specific types of flooring. Some work good with radiant heating and some may not. Let’s find it out.

The recommended flooring option you should go for is concrete ceramic tiles. The radiation of heat will work best with those type of flooring option. As you can easily control the temperature of your floor, it would be a big step to save your heating bill.

But, make sure that you don’t use a very thin slab of concrete or ceramic in your flooring. It would be difficult to heat the floor if it’s thicker then required.

If you want to go for a wooden floor, then you must laminate the wood before. The fluctuation of the temperature may cause breakage of wood. So, laminate your wooden floor properly.

lastly, avoid using thicker carpets on the floor. In case you use carpets, those should be thinner with high density. It would be best if you use carpet as less as possible. Any insulation on the floor may reduce the effect of radiant heating.

But, you can also use other types of flooring as radiant heating can work with many kinds of flooring. But concrete or ceramic tile floor is ideal for the radiant heating system.

## Disadvantage of Radiant Heating

The radiant heating might be the core of the new-age heating system, but it still has some drawback to look on.

Here we have listed them.

  • Installation Cost: Radiant heating installation bills can vary according to your location. Also, the labor cost can play a vital role to set up the installation cost. You may have to spend 6 to 15 dollar for each square foot, sated This Old House.
  • Floor height: the radiant heating system may slightly increase the floor height.

Despite some issues, Radiant heating is an efficient way of heating.

## Popularity of Radiant Heating

The popularity of radiant heating is getting high for all kinds of works. Radiant floor heating is extremely popular for residential usage. Wall and ceiling heating panels are popular in the warehouse and outdoor facilities.

Whatever your project is radiant heating provides you a properly working heating system. And it’s cost-effective as well.