What Causes Pipe Corrosion? Info from a Plumber in Las Vegas, NV

April 25, 2019 Published by Leave your thoughts

Pipe corrosion can be a big problem for property owners. If you’ve noticed you have plumbing leaks somewhere in your home, there’s a good chance that leak is a result of a pipe corroding so heavily that holes form in the metal. But it can be difficult to figure out what’s causing the corrosion itself.

Here’s some information from a plumber in Las Vegas, NV about a few of the most common causes of pipe corrosion you should be sure to watch for.

  • Low water pH: You may have learned about the pH scale in science class in high school. This scale allows you to measure the acidity or alkalinity of a certain substance, such as water. A seven on the scale (out of 14) is “neutral.” If you have a water pH below seven (which means it’s more acidic), this could be a cause of corrosion in your pipes. Higher acidity in water can result in the barrier within copper pipes dissolving. This leaves the pipes themselves exposed and more susceptible to corrosion and eventual leaks.
  • High levels of oxygen: Exposure to oxygen is one of the factors that leads to rust. If your water has a higher-than-normal level of oxygen, your pipes are more likely to rust over time. Therefore, it’s important to keep an eye on your water’s oxygen levels and do what you can to keep them in check.
  • High water velocity: Lots of turbulence within your water can also be a cause of pipe corrosion. This could be high water velocity, or high turbulence caused by elbows, sharp turns or obstacles inside your pipe system. The more turbulent the water, the more likely it is you’ll wear down your pipes and make them susceptible to corrosion in the long run.
  • Exposure to certain bacteria: There are some types of bacteria that, when present in your piping and water, can make it more likely that your pipes will corrode over time with long-term exposure. These include sulfate and iron bacteria.
  • Electrochemical causes: There are certain electrochemical causes that can also make corrosion more likely in your pipes, especially if they’re made of copper. For example, improper grounding of electrical appliances or lightning strikes in your area that hit utility poles’ grounding wires can result in electrochemical changes that make corrosion more likely.
  • Debris: If your water is carrying any corrosive debris such as sand, sediment or other gritty materials, it can wear down the piping from the inside over time. This is one of the reasons why a water filtration system is so beneficial.
  • Improper installation: Sometimes the way the piping was installed can actually make it more likely to experience corrosion. A plumber can tell you more upon inspection.

For more information about the most common causes of pipe corrosion and how you can prevent them, contact a plumber in Las Vegas, NV. It’s better to have your plumbing proactively inspected and serviced, as opposed to learning about the catalyst for pipe corrosion after a major leak forms!

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