Though a plumbing system works on simple principles, installing a system can be complex, and not every plumber installs a system in the proper way. On top of that, the stresses endured by pipes inevitably take their toll, even if they’re installed correctly. Here are some of the more common piping fails:

Burst Pipes

This is certainly one of the most common reasons why pipes fail. Unlike most other substances, water doesn’t shrink when it freezes but actually expands. When it does this in a pipe, the pressure can cause the pipe or its fittings to burst. Then, after the freeze, water escapes through the cracks in the pipe and may lead to damage that may be difficult to access and costly to fix, such as pipes that burst in a wall or in a slab.

Fortunately, a plumber who installs pipes according to codes can help pipes avoid freezing and bursting.

Problem with Metals

Fittings and valves are often made of metal, and incorrect installation can lead to problems. Dezincification happens when zinc is leached from pipe valves and fittings to the point where those fittings and valves start to break down. Many plumbing fixtures are made of brass, an alloy of zinc and copper, and over time the zinc can be lost. Again, proper installation that follows plumbing codes should be performed by professionals. For example, the amount of zinc in the brass shouldn’t be larger than 15 percent.

A problem called galvanic corrosion occurs when two different metals come into contact with each other in the presence of water, which is full of minerals and contaminants that produce an electric current. Again, plumbers can take steps to make sure that no electrical current runs between different metals to cause one or both of them to corrode and the joint that they create to fail. Sometimes all this needs is for a plumbing repair technician to place a washer or other fitting made of plastic or rubber between the two metals.

Pressure That’s Too High

Pressure is necessary for fresh water to flow into the building, reach all of its fixtures, and deliver a strong stream. However, if the pressure is too high, it can put such stress on the joints that they can fail over time. Too-high pressure can also cause the knocking in the pipes called “water hammer” which happens whenever the water is shut off. This can also cause the joints in the pipes to fail.


Corrosion is the enemy of pipes even if they are installed properly. As time goes on, copper pipes can develop tiny pits because of the action of hard water, or water that’s full of minerals. Eventually, they’ll start to leak. Pipes that are buried in acid soils are also subject to corrosion, as are pipes that are frequently cleaned with harsh chemicals.


If you believe that the pipes in your home need plumbing services, get in touch with our professionals at Ideal Services. The number to call is 702-396-5225.


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