27 Dec

Rusty Pipes Threaten Our Drinking Water

Do you have rusty pipes?

“If you clean up water and then put it into a dirty pipe, there’s not much point. I consider the distribution system to be the highest risk and the greatest problem we are going to be facing in the future.” ~Timothy Ford, a microbiologist and water research scientist with Montana State University.
Towns and cities across the United States spend more than $50 billion each year cleaning water sources from rivers, lakes and underground aquifers.

More than 170,000 public water systems are at work to keep tap water flowing into American homes and meeting the standards of the Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974.

But after the extensive purifying process, water ends up in your glass after traveling through pipes laid under city streets 50, 60 or 100 years ago.

Those pipes — made mostly from iron until plastic was introduced 30 years ago — span almost one million miles in the United States. As the iron pipes corrode and break, not only does water escape, but also diseases get in, experts say.

“Investigations conducted in the last five years suggest that a substantial proportion of waterborne disease outbreaks, both microbial and chemical, is attributable to problems within distribution systems, the National Research Council said in a study for the Environmental Protection Agency released in December.

The above is an excerpt from a Reuters story dated 1-24-07.

Rusty Pipes: Drinking Water’s Enemy

The story above illustrates the importance of upgrading and maintaining our water systems, especially as we discover health and maintenance issues at this level. The first question you may be asking is, “how does this affect me?” It may not affect you at all, especially if you have a new or updated water supply system. If, on the other hand, your home’s water supply still travels through old galvanized pipe, then you may well have a problem.  As you can see from the image below, the pipe may look fine on the outside, while at the same time the inside is rotting away in a mass of rust. Do you really want to take showers with or be drinking this water?
rusty pipes
But not to worry, Casey’s Plumbing solves these problems on a regular basis. Of course, those old, corroded and rusty pipes will have to be replaced. But again, don’t worry; it may not be as bad as you think….

Frequently Asked Questions About Replacing Your Rusty Pipes….

“Will my house be all torn up with holes in the wall?”
Answer – No. While there are some wall openings to be made, they are usually small and will not interfere with most daily activities. We also take special care to protect your property by covering furniture and other personal property with plastic during the work. And with our re-pipes, you will have options that include complete sheet rock repair.
“Will we have to move out or be without water during the process?”
Answer – Absolutely not. We are very sensitive to your comfort during our projects. You may be surprised at how “nonintrusive” our re-pipes are! At no time will you be without water overnight.
Won’t this kind of work cost a fortune?
Answer – Although cost really is subjective to each individual, the cost to update your home’s plumbing system is an investment that will have benefits for many years to come. More water pressure, less faucet and fixture maintenance and in the worst case, averting catastrophic failure. Those old, rusty pipes are at a high risk for failure.
And finally, we do offer financing for those who need it.
They say out with the old and in with the new this time of year. Perhaps this is the year you say, “out with the old, corroded, rusty pipes that are costing me money, and in with the new!”
Call today for your Re-Pipe estimate or any other plumbing service needed.
Westside: Beaverton, Lake Oswego, Tigard: (503) 620-9111
Eastside: Gresham, West Linn, Troutdale: (503) 253-0030



About Karen Mares

A Portlander born and raised, Karen lives in Southwest Portland with her husband and children. Karen has kept journals throughout her life, and she began her personal blog, Random Thoughts From A Suburban Mom in 2007. She hasn't stopped writing online since, channeling her passion for words and information into writing and communicating through social media and blogging.