How To Choose The Right PEX Fittings

In this blog post, you’ll read:It is imperative to choose the best PEX fitting for your system. There are different types, some of which are very costly. A plumber can easily find the best PEX fitting on the market. If you want to know about it, jMaster the art of PEX plumbing with our comprehensive guide on different types of PEX tubing—PEX A, B, and C. Discover the unique properties and connection methods of each to ensure a seamless fit for any plumbing project. Choose wisely with Plumber Star, your trusted source for top-quality PEX fittings and expert advice.
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PEX fitting is a crucial skill, and everyone should know about it. Which factors are beneficial during its installation? The difference between the products and material seems insignificant to the person without any idea.

However, inadequate or mismatched components in the plumbing system may prove catastrophic. Here, we will discuss the different types of PEX and their sizes. As well as tips and tricks that should be helpful for you while you install or repair PEX.

However, Plumber Star is among the best copper PEX fitting manufacturers and suppliers. So you can choose the best options available on the market.

The Main Types Of PEX Tubing

The market offers three varieties of PEX tubing that you can use: PEX A, PEX B, and PEX C. The primary distinction between these PEXes is the method of creation used by the maker when producing these three materials.

PEX, for the cross-linked polyethylene, is the term of industry. During the manufacture of the PEX, a manufacturer uses the cross-linking. This method denotes the PEX type it is, for example (A, B, C).

The difference between these PEXes does not necessarily show their grade performance. For example, the PEX A is not better inherently than the PEX C. The different PEX fitting types of these three PEXes help a plumber determine what qualities a tube should have during fitting.

Typically, among the three types, which type of PEX you choose can come from your preference or your plumber’s choice. The primary reason is that all PEX tubes should pass the ASTM F876 and NSF/ANSI/CAN 61 code requirements.

Important Note: These are special codes for unique attributes of your PEX fittings and pipes.

The PEX type choice for a plumber will depend on the code. A plumber can see that density, burst pressure levels, and bend radiuses will vary slightly amongst PEX pipe types, although these differences are minor.

Without getting too technical about the techniques used to make these three different varieties of PEX (A, B, and C), here’s a quick rundown of the most prominent qualities of each PEX type. Furthermore, why a plumber might choose one will also be discussed. A plumber should also know about the UPVC pipe fitting manufacturer, an alternative to PEX fitting known for rigidity and durability.

PEX A

pex a
PEX A
  • It has the highest flexibility.
  • It has “memory, ” meaning it can return to its original shape and size.
  • It consists of the highest “kink” resistance.
  • Using cold expansion (CEP) while making the connections is very important.
  • Here are the many ways to make the joint versatile (crimp ring, push-fit, cold expansion, compression or twist & lock, and the pinch clamp).

PEX B

  • This type is typically used in crimp-fitting because it is the most economical option.
  • There are different ways to make the joint (push-fit, compression, twist-and-lock, pinch clamp, and crimp ring).
  • This PEX is more rigid than the PEX C and PEX A.
  • This pix also has a low “kink” resistance.

PEX C

  • PEX C uses the same connection method as PEX B, which uses a joint (push-fit, PEX fitting compression, twist & lock, pinch clamp, and crimp ring).
  • This PEX type is the least commonly used in the piping.
  • This PEX is more rigid than PEX A. Therefore, cracks are more likely to develop in some brands.
  • This PEX has a lower “kink” resistance than PEX A.

If someone starts a new plumbing project from scratch, he can choose which type of PEX to use based on the abovementioned benefits. Of course, what your local plumbing supply business offers will influence your decision.

If, at this time, you are repairing any present PEX system, you must know what type of PEX it is. It helps you to fix it and makes your work easier. To start, you need to look at the intact section of the system, especially around the joints.

If these joints have cold expansion fittings, as a plumber, you should know that the PEX A fitting is the best fit for this system. But, if they have the fittings of another type of PEX, you should use PEX B or PEX C. Also, you can purchase any other kind that best matches the system.

The Way Of Determination The Size Of PEX Piping

It is a rapid and easy method. Firstly, check the pipe installed with PEX; you will find the size along the pipe of the PEX.

If you don’t get any value for size on the pipe, don’t worry. It’s time to use the Vernier caliper and measure the outside diameter. The range of the PEX is from 3/8 to 1. The standard sizes used in residential applications are 3/4″ and PEX pipe ½ inch, while size 1″ is used for the main feed lines. Typically, we try to match the sizes that already exist in your system.

size of pex piping
Size of pex piping

Here is some information about smoothly changing the diameter.

Using the same diameter PEX pipe already used in your system is accessible in some applications. However, if there is a problem with the flow or its pressure, it is advantageous to increase the diameter. You should be aware that the smaller inside diameter of the PEX pipe is the same as the standard size of the copper pipe. This job is straightforward for the Copper fitting manufacturer available at Plumber Star.

Types of PEX Connections – Availability Comparison

When you identify the type of PEX you are using, you should examine the fitting that will suit your needs. Here, we will discuss the types of connections that are available.

Cold Expansion Fitting In PEX A

The Cold Expansion PEX (CEP) fitting is the most common fitting used in PEX A piping. CEP fitting is commonly helpful for PEX A. The main benefit of this fitting is that it has the same inside diameter as the pipe. Plus, it does not reduce the flow in the pipe as the crimp fitting does.

Crimp & Pinch Fittings In PEX B & PEX C

Pinch clamp and copper crimp ring or S.S. are the most economical and popular connections used in PEX B. In such technologies, you will find a metal fastener along with the barbs of the fitting PEX tube. After that, a dedicated tool secures the clamp or ring to ensure the proper fit.

Copper fitting suppliers can offer a range of options for those still opting for copper fittings but are also adaptable to newer materials like PEX.

Pinch fittings in pex b pex c
Pinch fittings in pex b pex c

Push Fit / Push to Connect Fittings

It is the easiest and simplest connection used in PEX Fitting because it does not need any special PEX pipe tools to fit it. To complete a push-fit fitting connection, press on the end of the PEX pipe, and it is ready to use. Although these connections of the fitting are straightforward to install and repair, they are great.

But the cost of the new installation is prohibitive. Sometimes, its price is 5 to 10 times more than the pinch clamp or crimp ring. There is no surety about the performance and trustworthiness of the fitting (behind walls). The plumbing community is also doubtful about it.

Compression Fittings

The PEX fitting is often connected to the alternate form or pipe with CPVC to PEX fitting, copper tube size (CTS), and other types of tubes. Compression fitting is the appropriate choice. You will get a nut and brass sleeve at the end of the PEX pipe or CTS tubing.

Then, you will have space to adjust the pipe into the fittings. The sleeves create a compression seal when you tightly fasten the brass nut.

Compression fittings
compression fittings

Twist & Lock Fittings

Twist and lock fittings are not standard in PEX applications, but they are helpful in many situations. Some twist Lock fittings apply only on small-diameter plastic pipes, but others are compatible with the most common PEXes.

Press Fittings

Press fitting is the standard type of connection. It is a signal piece that includes both a fitting and a fastener. The PEX pipe is usually attached under the sleeve or on the barb of the fitting.

When the plumber is going for a press connection, they must use any special PEX fitting tool to help complete the fitting. A set of dedicated tools is required to work with the diameter of a PEX. Is it right or wrong to select it?

In some cases, it is not wrong. But there are some better and worse options available. You can go with one that suits your plumbing system best.

Comparing The Material of Various PEX Fittings 

Pipe and PEX fitting manufacturers commonly use three materials: brass, Stainless Steel, or plastic. Sometimes, pipe fitting manufacturers use a combination of these three materials. All you know is that every choice has some pros and cons. Let’s discuss the specifications of each material in more detail.

Plastic

If your number one priority is the cost, in this case, it is impossible to beat the PEX fitting plastic in any PEX system. These system fittings are incredibly resistant to corrosion.

In PEX, the crimp type is thicker than the metal fitting on the wall. The water flow is severely restricted because the fitting enters the PEX pipe. If you use a handful of plastic, it does not have a significant effect, but overall, it affects the flow of water, and the pressure also increases.

The inside diameter of the fitting of Cold Expansion PEX is (CEP) the same as the diameter of the cold. It has no adverse effect on the flow of the water.

Brass

Metal crimp fittings, such as brass, address the issue of thickness head-on. Because metal is much stronger than plastic, you can use a thinner metal fitting instead of a plastic fitting.

In this case, strength is much more critical and varies depending on your use. However, metal is the better choice for protection against water hammers and manufacturing faults. Do you want to know the reason?

Here it is! If you turn off a valve too quickly, your plumbing system receives a flood of shock waves). The biggest downfall when we use brass in the system is its corrosion susceptibility. The main reason is that the PEX itself does not corrode.

Usually, there is only one place where the corrosion will target: your fitting place. For dezincification, the brass metal is susceptible and can cause serious problems. As a result, cracked or leaked fitting issues will occur.

How likely are you to cause a leak? That entirely depends on your water’s quality and what is in it. There are options for sending a sample of your water to a lab for testing, but this is more complicated than the ordinary individual wants to go into. A Brass gate valve manufacturer can easily adjust to these considerations.

Stainless Steel

Do you want a more durable product than brass? Stainless steel fittings are the best option for you. Plus, it is corrosion-resistant, like plastic, so there is no chance of damage over the years.

You will never regret buying it as it has twice the strength of brass. According to the stainless steel pipe fitting manufacturers’ point of view, this product is best for both worlds. No product in the market can beat the quality of this product.

The cold PEX expansion fitting factor is unavailable for the stainless steel fitting. Cold expansion is only available in the crimp PEX fitting options (ASTM-F1807). The PEX conjures with the S.S. pinch clamps or copper crimp rings in these.

Fewer PEX manifold manufacturers in the markets make stainless steel products. If you connect with a professional setup, they will help you find this product quickly, primarily because it is excellent for your plumbing system.

So, if you are looking for an excellent seller to provide this product, contact Plumber Star as soon as possible. These manufacturers and suppliers will try to provide exceptional products as quickly as possible.

Tools To Make These Connections

If you are new to the plumbing field, the cost of purchasing the necessary tools to use any of these systems is another consideration. If you are doing a small job or just repairing the system, we will advise you to use manual tools to complete the task.

There is no sense in investing in the complete power tool system because it proves very costly for you and may break your bank balance. If you want to do the plumbing in your everyday routine, it will prove very good if you look at the specialized tool. It will be easy to use and reduce the installation time.

Cold Expansion Connections

Hand-operated tools are available for cold expansion PEX plumbing. However, the standard type of tool that the plumber uses is battery-operated hand tools. Many plumbers find that investing in this power tool pays for itself fast in terms of saving time when making many daily connections.

Cold expansion connections
Cold expansion connections

Crimp Ring Connections / Pinch Clamp Connections

Power tools available on the market can easily make crimp ring connections, but it is common to find a hand-operated tool in the box of plumbers. For a crimp ring, you need to place the jaws of tools over the PEX tube and around the ring for the clamping. But in the case of a pinch clamp, it just needs to go on the ends of the jaws, and on the clamp, it needs to access the small ear.

When a plumber works in a specific situation, the pinch clamp makes the plumber work very easy.

Push Fit / Push to Connect Fittings

Push-to connections and push-fit connections are straightforward to make. You do not need special tools; you can do it easily by hand. While this connection saves money, you only need to invest a little. However, the higher cost of push-fit fittings negates its price, especially if you are installing many fittings.

Compression Connections

The compression fitting does not need any special tools except the two wrenches. Just as the push-fit fitting connection saves money, you do not need to invest too much. However, the higher cost of the compression fitting negates its price, especially if you are installing many fittings.

Press Connections

A unique tool is required to make the press connection. These fittings are expensive, and a complete toolbox is needed. So you can opt for it if you have a reasonable budget.

You should invest in the clamp diameter for the press PEX fitting. This connection system is unsuitable for everyone, unlike pinch clamp tools, which use a single tool for multiple clamp sizes. Whether this indicates the expense is enabling or prohibitive is a matter of interpretation.

In Conclusion

Finally, it is up to you to decide which option is most appropriate for your situation. We advise you to choose a PEX that is appropriate for your system and within your task budget. It is typically a trade-off between the types of investments you wish to make in the instruments needed to complete the project.

Due to its higher cost, soldering with copper piping has long been phased out as the favored plumbing procedure. PEX plumbing has made installation easier and more cost-effective. Our manufacturers and suppliers are open to answering your queries at Plumber Star.

Ask your questions in the comment section below and fix your troubles.

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