When Should I Replace My Old Plumbing

When Should I Replace My Old Plumbing

One of the most important features of your home is one that you hardly ever see. It is also a feature that has an incredible lifespan. We are talking about plumbing. It keeps your shower running, your dishes clean, and so many other things that we probably take for granted.

When Should I Replace My Old Plumbing

As durable as plumbing is, that doesn't mean that it lasts forever, and when it starts to break down, things could get pretty, um, slippery. It's a common trope in TV and movies. The pipes burst under the sink and all the sudden hilarity ensues. But, when it happens in real life, it is definitely not funny.

Here, we'll discuss some of the signs that your plumbing might need to be replaced. By knowing the signs, you can save yourself a headache in the future and avoid one of those TV moments.


Before we dive into the warning signs that you need your plumbing replaced, you should know the lifespan of the plumbing you have. By knowing the age of your house, when the plumbing was last replaced, and the type of pipes you have, you will have a good idea of how much time you have before you need to install plumbing.

  • Brass pipes - 40 to 70 years

  • Copper pipes - 50 years or more

  • Steel pipes - 20 to 50 years

  • Cast iron pipes - 75 to 100 years

  • PVC pipes - 50 to 80 years

It should be noted that these lifespan estimates are for the pipes themselves, and you may have to repair or replace fittings and joints. Also, the appliances attached to your pipes will most certainly not have as long of a lifespan.

Signs you need to replace your plumbing

Some of these are more obvious than the others, so it is recommended that you take a look at your pipes every now and then to make sure that everything is in order. Remember, the sooner you catch a problem, the less of a hassle and an expense it will be.

Low water pressure

Low water pressure could be a sign that there is a leak somewhere in your plumbing. This could lead to more problems than just low water pressure.

For example, if you have a leak, it could cause water damage to your house wherever the leak is. This is a problem you especially want to catch early, as water damage can wind up being very expensive.

Low water pressure could also mean other things, such as a clogged pipe. Either way, if you experience a sudden decrease in water pressure, it is best to figure out what is going on and not let the problem persist.

Discoloration of water

If you notice a discoloration of water, you want to get to the bottom of it immediately. Chance are, your pipes have become corroded, which can lead to several problems.

The first one to consider is the quality of your drinking water. The discoloration you are seeing is likely rust in your water. While this isn't necessarily dangerous, it will make your water have a metalic taste that is not pleasant. It could also lead to hard water.

Another problem that can come from corroded pipes is pipes bursting. This is the worst case scenario and is no fun to deal with. A burst pipe can be one of the most expensive problems to fix, plus, you'll be without water.

If you notice discoloration of your water, call a skilled professional right away.

Constant clogging

If your drains are slowing down consistently, it could be another sign that your pipes are corroded.

Once pipes start corroding, they start to develop a build up of minerals and rust. So, no matter how much Drain-O you use, or how often you unclog your pipes, they will keep having drainage issues.


If your water has a weird smell to it, that could be another sign of corrosion. The smell comes from the mineral and bacterial build up inside of your pipes.

Water pipe replacement cost

Piping is generally sold per linear foot, which is why it is important to know if you need replacements as early as possible.

You can expect to pay anywhere from $50 to $250 per linear foot, with replacements ranging from $2,000 to $10,000.

If you think you might need a plumbing replacement, please contact STAHL today.