IPEX(Plumbbetter)

I am looking for some clarification regarding Plumbbetter PEX piping. I have read conflicting information regarding the white Plumbbetter PEX piping and as to whether or not it is part of the Kitec class action lawsuit. It is not the type made with the aluminum layer installed, but from my understanding ALL Plumbbetter PEX was put under the same umbrella.

I disclosed to my client that Plumbbetter was named in the Kitec class action suit. The deal fell through and the listing agent disclosed it to the next buyer as a material fact, which resulted in a price reduction. They hired a plumber to come in and remove it and he declined the work stating that it was not part of the Kitec Lawsuit and signed off on it. The listing agent and seller are both furious.

Am I reading the document correctly? If anyone could provide me with some insight I would really appreciate it.

My understanding of the problem is that the brass fittings tended to deteriorate as a result of the brass chlorine mixture caused a potential premature failure. I could be wrong though.

I often saw pex with plastic fittings that was not considered to be an issue. That may be why the plumber said everything was ok.
Hope this helps
Cheers

Thank you Douglas. I am familiar with what causes the failures, my question is more whether or not this piping was part of the class action lawsuit or not. I just want to make sure I am interpreting the document correctly.

I believe you’re reading it correctly, do you have any pics of the fittings?

IDK.

When I ran into things like that, and didn’t know or couldn’t decipher, I said they may have been named in a class action suit and would then refer it out to a qualified professional…in this case, a qualified plumber.

Just a thought for the future. :smile:

1 Like

Kitec was the most common brand name. However, it was sold under other brand names as well, such as AmbioComfort, AQUA, KERR Controls, IPEX, Plomberie Amelioree, PlumbBetter, WarmRite, XPA, and Kitec plumbing systems can usually be identified by the brass fittings, which will usually have one of the following stamps: Kitec, KTC, CSA B137.9/10, ATSM F1974

Kitec plumbing was manufactured and widely used in homes from 1995 until 2007. The orange Kitec piping is only certified to run up to a temperature of 82°C. Higher heating causes the piping to deteriorate and high water pressure can cause the piping to fail. The Kitec fittings are made of brass, and brass is an alloy of copper and zinc. Zinc corrodes when it is exposed to oxygen and moisture. The zinc oxide causes blockages in the piping and restricts water flow. This can cause the piping to rupture and allow for flooding. Most insurance companies will want to know what type of plumbing the home has. A plumbing upgrade may be required to meet insurance requirements, or they may increase your water damage deductible or limit the amount of coverage provided.

There is an active $125 million active lawsuit against the manufacturer of Kitec plumbing, effective until January 2020. http://www.kitecsettlement.com/index.cfm

After reading Simon’s link I may email that to both agents and the buyer and seller in one email copying all concerned.

There is still time for the seller to file a claim until 2020.

1 Like

I don’t have pictures of the fittings but they said IPEX on them. Thank you for your reply. The document says components, individual parts, or as a system, PEX-AL-PEX, PE-AL-PE, PERT-AL-PERT, PEX pipe, valves, fittings, and/or components, manufactured by or on behalf of IPEX whether sold under the names Kitec, PlumbBetter, IPEX AQUA, WarmRite, Kitec XPA, AmbioComfort, XPA, KERR Controls, Plomberie Améliorée or otherwise). which covers just the piping itself if I am reading it correctly.

The funny part is I did recommend a qualified plumber to evaluate the piping. After showing up he signed off saying it was not part of the Kitec lawsuit. The Realtor calls to tell me I dunno what I am talking about and I should do more research and that the plumber is clearly more of a professional than me. I call the plumber and he says he was just looking for the obvious orange and blue Kitec piping and had no idea about the other brands named in the lawsuit. He ends up apologizing and retracting his statement. I am not liable but I wanted to make sure the realtor knew I was not the Idiot.

4 Likes

Thanks Larry

1 Like

I use my above information in my report and make a further evaluation by a licensed plumber. What they do after that is up to them. Realtors always try to downplay things, and most have a shady plumber, electrician, contractor, etc to back up their downplaying things.

1 Like

Welcome, Brandon. :smile:

Good to know!
Nice thread.

1 Like

There has to be a way to identify the bad PEX from the good without carrying around a bunch of names.

PEX-AL-PEX, PE-AL-PE, PERT-AL-PERT, PEX Kitec, PlumbBetter, IPEX AQUA, WarmRite, Kitec XPA, AmbioComfort, XPA, KERR Controls, Plomberie Améliorée

Man!

Tongue twister :slight_smile:

Yep! …

I spoke with a representative from IPEX (manufactured Kitec, Plumbbetter, etc) and he clarified that although the Plumbbetter without an aluminum core was not known for premature failures, it was still included in the lawsuit. They put all IPEX manufactured PEX types under the same “umbrella”

I circled where it says PEX(NON-AL) in the official document and Simon posted a good link from Carson Dunlop that also states solid wall PEX(no aluminum core) was also recalled.

So what I have concluded is that, all the Brands listed, whether or not they have an aluminum core or not and regardless of type of fittings, valves or components are recalled and should be treated as such.

2 Likes

Thank you, Brandon. :smile:

A listing agent can get a plumber to say literally ANYTHING with little to no repercussions. It’s a general tactic they use when the FACTS don’t favor them. Whenever I get a response like that from a plumber or other contractor I respond to the agents by requesting that the plumber certify and warranty the plumbing. Then suddenly that plumber disappears, never to be heard from again.

1 Like

Very few old time plumbers that are still in the trade are good, take pride in what they do, take the time to educate themselves and care about the profession. Most of the new guys just want to clock in and out, smoke some weed, drink some beer, and spend the paycheck.

At least he had balls to retract & apologize.

3 Likes