For compressed air, go beyond metal piping for pipes that are inexpensive and straightforward to install. PEX piping has become the most significant revolution as professionals search for an alternative space in plumbing applications. There is an urgent need for depending on these tools because PEX pipes offer more resistance to harmful chemicals found in water systems than their prevalent counterparts. These units are made from rigid materials that help prevent the formation of pinholes over time and resist corrosion elements that reduce the quality and clog other pipes.
Many users are unsure whether these pipes can work as described, and that begs the question, “Can PEX pipe be used for compressed air?”
The PEX pipes are not 100% certified for compressed air. However, you can customize them in long pipe runs to be used for the compressed air. In that case, you will need additional other fittings and you must install them as per the instructions.
The compressed air is always kept under high pressure and the piped holding the air must be made from rigid materials so that it becomes less vulnerable. The PEX pipes have the needed tensile strength to hold this pressure as long as your installation process is straightforward. Another advantage with these pipes is that they minimize chances of leak points.
There are three mechanisms used in producing PEX pipe, namely, PEX a, PEX b, and PEX c. For better durability, flexibility, and an excellent thermal elastic pipe, PEX comes in handy.
What you are supposed to know about PEX pipe
Elastic memory refers to a PEX pipe’s ability to expand to a specific limit and, after that, return to its initial dimensions. In case the pipe is subjected to immense pressure resulting from freezing, a PEX pipe can expand up to twice its original diameter. They are also flexible enough to rotate up to 90 degrees corner, unlike other pipes that depend on elbow connections.
Perhaps, despite PEX boasting an improved R-value compared to metallic pipes, the code has no role in differentiating between piping materials when it comes to insulation. Therefore, you are required to utilize the same thickness of insulation and materials similar to other piping alternatives.
The greatest attribute you can get from PEX pipe is a warranty. With PEX pipe, customer satisfaction is a priority. Even though the warranty is based on the manufacturer, most brands offer more than 25 years warranty on the connection system and the PEX pipe.
Key features of a PEX pipe
PEX pipes joints are designed with compression fittings. The joints are straightforward and quick to finish, plus there is no need to fasten them at any given point.
These units are highly flexible meaning you can curve them in all directions and still retain their fixed position. That allows you to use it through floor joists as well as walls. It can curve up to a 3″ radius needing no elbow joints and kinks.
Immune to rust and other elements
PEX pipes are less susceptible to harmful elements that can degrade the quality of the pipe, such as rust and surface pressure. Many manufacturers offer a warranty to their products in case of the bursting of the pipe.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a PEX pipe the best option for compressed air?
From a manufacturing point of view, PEX pipes are not the primary option for compressed air. However, most users opt for these units since they are cheaper than copper, easy to install, and are highly resistant to damaging elements, including chemicals. Also, the PEX pipes would be appropriate option for the compressed air if you follow the correct procedure and avoid subjecting the pipe to any form of light.
Why are PEX pipes not the best option for compressed air?
PEX pipes are designed to resist a burst pressure of nearly 800 PSI, which makes them ideal for hydronic piping projects. However, they are primarily designed for liquids. PEX pipes have fine tubing that can handle compressed air, but the connections are not AFAIK.
Also, they only work as intended in areas with limited lightings, such as indoors. When exposed to UV light for more than a month, it will start losing its quality. The same scenario occurs when it’s subjected to fluorescent lights.
So if you are in for extracting the best results, opt to cover the pipe with a recommended material. So for compressed air applications, use an alternative that doesn’t have so many limits.
Another downside of a PEX pipe is that it has a reduced ability to cool down the air. Most people also notice issues in the removal of moisture. With time, moisture forms at the low spots and eructs out. Again, the manufacturers of these products don’t sanction them to be applied for air projects, so if in case of any manufacturing defects amid operation, you will not be compensated.
What is the best pipe for compressed air?
There are many piping solutions that you can employ to transport air bereft of any weak points so that you can utilize it in machines and other tasks. It is paramount to know what pipe can best suit compressed air.
I would think highly of a black pipe as the best selection for compressed air systems from where I sit. The reason being most individuals are accustomed to installing it, and it will serve for not less than 30 years.
However, given that they are not coated, they are more susceptible to rust, affecting curvaceous tooling. Despite this minor downside, black pipes can withstand a lot of abuse for years to come.
Thanks to the robust strength and low maintenance of these pipes. And unlike its correlatives, you can apply this one to various other uses such as sewage systems and gas distribution.
You can use these pipes in projects that don’t need the pipe to be coated. An interesting bit is that you can customize it to suit your job at hand. Most industries found these units to be beneficial on account that they convey high pressure air and steam.
Is a PEX pipe freeze-resistant?
Of course, a PEX pipe can withstand freeze damage, given that it can expand when frozen and constrict to the initial shape when defrosted. However, it is not freeze-proof, meaning you must use the recommended standard insulation measures to help get rid of freezing.
Is a PEX pipe ideal for the outdoors?
These units are not sanctioned for use in outdoor projects. The manufacturer discourages exposing PEX pipes to direct sunlight due to the intense UV rays that can bring about untimely degradation.
What are the merits of a PEX pipe?
There are so many benefits that come along with PEX pipes. One of the popular ones is the ability to withstand a lot of abuse from damaging elements. These gadgets are also flexible enough for you to bend them at any angle, plus they neither abrade nor form pinholes over time. Compared to other piping systems, this one is relatively easy to set up and integrates lesser fittings and connections.
Is PEX good for outdoor use?
Another intriguing question that individuals seek is whether PEX pipes are suitable for outdoor or indoor use. The PEX Pipes are not recommended for outdoor projects since they are more susceptible to UV rays, promoting immature degradation. This can be costly as you will have to continually replace the pipes.
A PEX pipe can articulate several jobs, including transporting compressed air. All essential aspects of these gadgets are mentioned in this article, and hopefully, you will benefit from them since it’s a valuable resource to get all your doubts sorted out.
Before utilizing a PEX pipe, certify if it’s meant for that specific field of expertise to evade constraints.