PEX is a cross linked polyethylene material which is very strong. Cross linking is a chemical process which happens between the polyethylene polymer chains. It makes the material very strong at the same time it is also flexible. It does not go brittle in very cold temperatures nor breaks on any kind of impact. It was first used in Europe in around 1970 and went into United States a decade later. PEX has become popular ever since. It has replaced the conventional pipes in almost all sorts of applications. It is predominantly used in radiant heating systems. It can safely be used for both hot and cold water plumbing. It is very easy to ship or handle PEX pipes.
The basic advantage of PEX pipes is that they can be stored in the form of bundles and need not be cut into pieces for storage purposes. This makes it easy to have any length of pipe without any kind of a joint. Very less space is occupied for storage as it can be spooled. It is easy for transportation too as it is vey light in weight.
The installations of PEX pipes is very easy and does not need many fittings as the conventional pipes needed. One can bend it by ninety degrees without using an elbow fitting. The pipe can be run for long distances without any kind of attachments. No soldering is required to fit PEX fittings. It is very safe and easy to install them. The fitting of PEX tubing is absolutely hassle free. No hot torches and hazardous lead based solders are needed to install them. As there is no scaling there is no fear of corrosion. One need not be worried about the quality of water as it would not affect the pipe. As the material is highly flexible it does not break when water freezes in it.
It is most popularly used for the radiant heating because it conserves heat. There is very little loss in transmission. The heating system which uses the PEX pipes is most effective. Radiant heating systems use heated water which passes through the pipes and the movement is very silent unlike the passage of water through the copper pipes which is very noisy. It does not need a lot of time to install and there is no requirement for frequent replacements so PEX pipes can be considered as true value for money.
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