Pex plumbing: crimp or cinch?

Discussion in 'The Duck Hunters Forum' started by The_Duck_Master, Mar 7, 2014.

  1. The_Duck_Master

    The_Duck_Master Elite Refuge Member

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    I'm going to be re-plumbing the house and the kennel this summer and am planning on using Pex. I'm looking for suggestions from the FBT regarding whether I should use cinch or crimp fittings.

    To give an idea of the project size, the house is a ranch style with 3 full baths plus typical kitchen & wash water. All the water is run from the garage into the crawl space under the house and then up to the fixtures.

    The kennel lines will be outdoor but placed inside conduit with heat tape to keep from freezing and degrading in the sun (which means the working space for any repairs will be very tight). I may decide to add larger access boxes at the junctions if more working space is needed.

    Is one (cinch vs crimp) easier to install in small spaces?

    Is one more reliable than the other?

    Is one easier to remove/repair?

    Are the "one-hand" tools reliable and practical for this or would I be better off going with a 2-handed tool?

    Thanks!

    TDM
     
  2. tennduckdog

    tennduckdog Elite Refuge Member

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    I re-plumbed my whole house with PEX as well. I used "shark bites" and after having experience working with copper and sweating joints and all that goes into it, they make you wonder why on earth anyone uses anything else. They aren't cheap, but with PEX you have much fewer joints to make. I got them off of ebay for a lot less than I could buy them locally. My dad and I plumbed 2 bathrooms, the kitchen and laundry room in 1 day with me under the house and him in the house. If you go this route, buy the tool that allows you to un-do the shark bite, you might not ever use it, but it's nice to have if you don't get one seated very well and need to take it off, they're cheap and really the only way to get one off without having to cut it and throw it away.
     
  3. Native NV Ducker

    Native NV Ducker Mod-Duck Hunters Forum, Classifieds, and 2 others Moderator Flyway Manager

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    Found this:
    http://www.mobilehomerepair.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7225
    I have been using PEx cinch clamps about a dozen years and have never had a leak either from installation or afterwards that I know of. Never had a call back on cinch fitting and I give a written guarantee with every job. So I do have complete confidence in the stainless steel system. But I have not heard of anyone having problems with the crimp fittings either. I am talking about stories from actual plumbers or fix-it types. There are stories on the internet about PEx failing, but I tend to believe that is mostly dyed in the wool, copper sweat fitting plumbers stirring mud. I can see where PEx plumbing, using any kind of fittings, is an imaginary threat to plumbers.

    So my personal opinion is that both crimp and cinch are excellent plumbing methods. I think the pros and cons are more about application than performance. I like my stainless cinch fittings because #1, they are stainless steel. I was a mobilehome tech for about the last 10 years of the polybutylene plumbing era. The crimp rings kind of creep me.

    Also, I only need one crimp tool to do any size fitting, 3/8" to 1". The 1/2 & 3/4 is all I actually use. The bad thing about the cinch fitting and tool is that you must fit the tool square to the fitting. I have closed the tool and went a little sideways on the fitting, causing me to cut the ring off and try again. To my knowledge, there is no small cinch tool for tight places. While this has created challenges, it has never stopped me or even slowed me down much with the plumbing. Just like cpvc, steel and copper, when I am in an area I can't reach in to, I make the hard to reach parts one assembly and put it in as a unit. Another thing I like about the cinch tool is once you get it calibrated right, the tool does this "collapse and click" to let you know when the tool has done it's job right.

    With the crimp system, you need different tools for different sizes, unless someone has come up with a multi size tool that I am not aware of. There is the small hand tool to use in tight places, but that crimp is not as accurate as it is with the big crimp tools. It is also important to use the go-no go checking tool with the crimp system. The stainless cinch system does not use them.

    The cinch ring is a lot more engineered also. There is a stop built into it so you will know when you are fully seated. You can see the engineering in how the ring actually does "cinch" or tighten evenly around the fitting and you don't end up with the two bumps like on the copper ring.

    As for which is best, I am probably no help. I prefer the cinch. Most folks on this forum use crimp. I doubt anyone here will give you stories of PEx failures using either system. It might come down to user preference. I know for myself, when I saw those same rings that we used on PB pipe, I did not have a lot of confidence in the crimps. Back in the PB day, rings often failed right at that crease on the bump. But that was an aluminum ring problem on the old PB pipe. Never had the problem using copper rings on PB pipe.


    Other info:
    http://diy.stackexchange.com/questions/1709/what-is-the-advantage-of-pex-pinch-clamp-vs-crimp-rings

    My whole house was done in pex, 10 years ago, and he used the crimp method. Probably lots of changes since then.
     
  4. igo4dux75

    igo4dux75 Senior Refuge Member

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    Wirzbo pro-pex expansion with a cordless expansion gun or pinch style stainless clamp with a ratcheting pinch tool. The later gets in tight spaces pretty good. Think about the connection before you assemble/cinch. Generally you can pre assemble one side of the connection before you put it in place and still be able to connect the other half with limited space.

    Not all pex is created equal. Good stuff costs more but if you do your homework you can buy what you need and have little waste.
     
  5. Brian

    Brian Elite Refuge Member

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    When I built my house 6 years ago I used Zurn pex and the stainless steel crimp rings. Very easy to use and was no were near the price of some of the expansion tools or cinch ring tools
     
  6. JohnBZ

    JohnBZ Elite Refuge Member

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    Only thing to be aware of with pex is that some people have issues with rodents chewing on the tubing. If you do a search on it it is a fairly known problem. Obviously it is more of a rodent problem than a quality issue but it can be an issue.
     
  7. summerjack

    summerjack Elite Refuge Member

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    Yep. When u put decon out for the mice better watch they get really thirsty. Then it wont matter what crimp u used.

    Just repiped and gassed my house from the street. I had over 7k in copper and black pipe. I used k copper
     
  8. callinfowl

    callinfowl Kalifornia Forum

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    Why would you waste the money K copper when either M or L copper if isolated properly will last longer than most homes built today ?:yes
     
  9. summerjack

    summerjack Elite Refuge Member

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    I wouldn't do it again! isolated properly is the key word. we re-piped before we opened up every single wall and removed 5 walls....ended up sending about 10 tons of button-board to the dump
     
  10. callinfowl

    callinfowl Kalifornia Forum

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    Got ya !
    L .....is what I would use if I was gonna recopper my home or business.
    K .............damn that must have cost a fortune.:eek::eek::eek:

    I can't stand fixing dielectric issues , they can be a nightmare.
    Talk about opening a can of worms.:eek::yes
     

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