When undergoing a major home renovation, it’s common to install or replace plumbing. Perhaps you’re moving fixtures in the kitchen or bathroom. Or maybe now’s the time to replace old pipes before they deteriorate and become a problem. Either way, the first step to installing new plumbing lines is to come with a plan for how and where the pipes will run.
In this article, our professional plumbers offer a few different approaches to take. Before doing any significant plumbing work, be sure to check your local building codes to make sure your plan is in compliance.
Ways to run new plumbing lines
- Reuse the same routes as the old pipes. This approach is pretty simple and straightforward. If you’re not making many changes to the overall layout of the space and where the water outlets are needed, you should be able to use the same cavities – behind walls and ceilings – as the plumbing you’re replacing.
- Create a new route in existing cavities. If your project entails moving an outlet a short distance, you will need to redirect the plumbing to that location – but you may be able to fit it within the existing structure, HVAC, electrical, etc. In fact, with newer, more flexible PEX pipes, it might be easier to go around obstructions or fit through tight spaces than rigid copper pipes.
- Use guide pipes or inspection camera to plan new routes. For help planning a new plumbing route, you can use a test pipe to dry-fit your route before installing the real pipe you’re going to use. Another option is to use an inspection camera that can probe behind walls to see what’s behind them and what space you have available for your plumbing.
- Build a false wall. Also known as a chase wall, essentially this is creating a non-structural wall that will hide the new plumbing lines coming from the basement or elsewhere in your home. This approach can help you add outlets to new spaces but you may sacrifice available floor space in your home to build the false walls.
More advice you should know
When planning a new plumbing route, keep these important tips in mind:
- Don’t forget to account for all types of plumbing pipes, including drain lines and traps
- Hot and cold water lines should not touch each other – you generally want 2-6 inches between them
- Avoid cutting into support beams or floor joists that will compromise the structural integrity of the home
Planning and running new pipes can seem like a puzzle. But it’s also jobs that you want done correctly to avoid messy and costly plumbing issues down the road.
If you need plumbing assistance with your home renovation, the name to call in the Little Rock area is Whitten Plumbing. We can determine the best way to configure the new pipes and provide trustworthy plumbing services. To get started, call us today at (501) 607-6596.