Frequently Asked Questions
Q. "What is the difference between the different colors (red, blue, white) of PEX pipe? Do I have to use red for hot and blue for cold?"
A. There is no difference between the different colors of PEX except the color - they are all made of the same material in the same manner, and designed for the same applications. You do not have to use red for hot and blue for cold. You can use any color of PEX tubing you want for any potable water line you want, some people just find it easier to work with the different colors to help them keep track of hot vs. cold water lines. Alternatively, some people prefer to use white for both since it looks more like the rigid plastic piping they're used to.
Q. "Are the clamp style or crimp style rings better?"
A. Each system has advantages and disadvantages in certain applications. The stainless steel clamp rings are naturally non-corrosive, which may make them a better fit for coastal areas, and are typically easier to install in confined spaces. The crimp rings are more suitable for use with polybutylene or plastic fittings since copper is a softer metal and will provide a better seal, and can be a better fit for areas where expansion is a part of life. Some think the fact that the clamps are easier to remove is a bonus, while others worry about the potential for leaks with such an easy to remove fitting. Although successful clamp connections can be confirmed based on the release of the ratchet tool, crimp fittings can be checked with a go-no-go gauge long after the original connection was made, which many find reassuring. Really, the choice boils down to personal preference and the needs of your application.
Q. "I need a piece of PEX tubing cut exactly 3 feet long. How accurate are your length cuts? What are your specification tolerances when you send/cut a piece of PEX tubing?"
A. We guarantee that we will send you PEX tubing as we list. We also guarantee that if you order a length (such as 3') that you will receive a minimum of what you ordered (3 feet in this example but we might even ship you 3' 2" or 3' 1/2" or as much as 4'). We do not guarantee our length cuts are 100% exact, but we do guarantee to send at least as long a length as you ordered - we never send shorter than you order. If you need an exact cut, we recommend you purchase a tubing cutter or find someone who can offer you exact cuts.
Q. "What if I order the wrong length of a 'per foot' cut order? Can I return what I don't need?"
A. Because our PEX tubing is cut specifically for your order, you can return only the full length that you ordered. For instance, we cannot accept 1' of returned tubing from a 3' piece that we sent you, but you can return the entire 3' piece to us if needed. Additionally, please note that (as with any returned item) the tubing must be free of ANY cuts, signs of use, compound debris, etc. and must be dry without spots or stains. We can only accept returns of PEX tubing that has never been cut/altered and is in perfect resalable condition.
Q. "I need 15ea. 2' lengths of PEX tube, but when I try to enter 2' more than once, the amount in the shopping cart increases/adds up (ie 2' then 4' then 6' etc)...How can I order 15ea. 2' lengths of copper tubing?"
A. Because we don't guarantee an exact length of copper tubing, we will send you 30' and let you cut the tubing to the lengths you desire. We only offer one cut piece per tubing size per order. Please note that any altered or used item is not returnable.
Q. "Do I need a stiffener to use SharkBite® push-connect fittings with PEX?"
A. An integral PEX stiffener is not usually needed when using SharkBite® since they come equipped with an integrated Tube Support Liner that effectively supports the PEX tubing to ensure the O-ring seals correctly. However, please be sure to check local codes as they might have different requirements. Additionally, note that the Tube Support Liner is not required when using SharkBite® products with CPVC and copper, and can easily be removed if preferred or required by local code.
Q. "I need to bury my PEX piping underground. Is there any problem with using copper crimp rings?"
A. If you are using copper crimp rings then you should wrap the rings and any exposed brass fittings with self-adhesive silicone tape. This can help prevent any chemicals or elements that may be in your soil from attacking the copper rings or brass fittings.
Q. "Can I use the SharkBite® PEX Clamp Ring Tool on copper crimp rings?"
A. No. The PEX Clamp Ring Tool is for clamping the stainless steel clamp rings on to PEX fittings and pipe. If you are using copper crimp rings then you must use one of the Crimp Ring Tools. The Clamp Ring Tools and the Crimp Ring Tools are NOT interchangeable.
Q. "Is there a Sharkbite® removal tool for stainless steel clamp rings?"
A. No, a special tool is not needed for the removal of a stainless steel clamp ring. Just use a flat head screwdriver to pop the clamp on the side.