What Does it Mean to Repipe a House?

  No matter how long you’ve lived in your home, you’re bound to deal with plumbing issues at some point. In older homes, old pipes can corrode and have damage that requires repairs. In newer homes, it’s only a matter of time before you have to handle small leaks and issues. In some cases, you’ll want to repipe a house to address constant repairs or to update your home’s plumbing system. Here’s how you know when it’s time to repipe and what you can expect from the process.

What Does it Mean to Repipe a House?

When you repipe a house, you’re replacing all the old pipes with new, updated pipes. This is done when homes get old and the systems are ready for newer and more innovative materials and options, much like upgrading your appliances. You may also repipe if you’re doing a remodel to your kitchen or bathroom and you want to upgrade the entire system at once to accommodate new fixtures. Image: uncovered pvc pipes in someone's yard. During a repipe, a plumber will replace all the pipes in your home.

When Would a Homeowner Need to Repipe a Home?

Wondering if it’s time to replace your pipes? Here are some clear signs to consider repiping:

Your Home Has Lead Pipes or Galvanized Steel Pipes

Lead pipes are often found in homes that are 100 years or older. Though common for the time period, lead is a dangerous metal that can cause health problems if it leaches into the water supply. Many older homes have been updated, but it’s important to check your system and see if it’s time to upgrade to something safer.
Another common material in older homes is galvanized steel. This is a durable option that was typically used in mid-century homes, but the pipes are prone to corrosion. Over time, this can cause leaks or sediment that restricts the flow of water. It can also get into the water supply and contaminate it.

No Matter How Many Times You Fix Your Pipes, They’re Still Broken

Ongoing leaks and repairs with your plumbing can really add up, especially if you’re not getting a resolution. Repiping is a big undertaking and investment, but it can save you from spending tons of money on repairs over time.

Your Home is Being Remodeled

When you’re remodeling to add a bathroom or kitchen, it’s a good time to consider whether repiping is a good choice. This isn’t a renovation to take lightly, but if you’re pairing a new piping system with an old one, you could run into problems where the two meet.

Before You Start – Get an Inspection and Estimate

Repiping your home is a big home renovation and a major investment into your home’s future, so it’s important to make sure you’re working with a good company. Contact a few local plumbers and get inspections and estimates for the work and be sure to get more than one quote. Compare your quotes and see which one is the best for your home.

What to Expect During when you Repipe a House

When you take on a repiping project, most of your home will have work done. Here’s what you can expect from the process:


Installing new pipes will involve most of the rooms in your home. To prepare, cover your furniture and other items of value in your home to protect them from water, dirt, or damage. If you have fragile décor, consider packing it up and moving it to a safe area. Image: woman covering her furniture with a plastic sheet. When you repipe a home you'll need to protect your furniture. It’s important to remember that your water service will be shut off during some of the work. Your plumber will need to shut off the water to change over from the old system to the new one, so you’ll be without running water during that time. If this is a concern, plan the time with the plumber to reduce the disruption to your daily routine.

Plumbers Need Access

Plumbers will need access to your walls to cut holes and install the new pipes. Make room by moving furniture out of the way and removing wall hangings in the rooms where they’ll be working.

How Long Does the Process Take?

The time involved for repiping depends on the size of your home and the plumbing system. It could take anywhere from a few days to a week, and you’ll be without water for some of that time. Plan accordingly. Image: two PEX pipes, one blue pipe for cold water and one red pipe for warm water.


Like other major projects, you will need a work permit for repiping. You can get this from your local municipality after the initial work is completed.

Inspection and Finishing

Once your new pipes are installed, you will need to call an inspector to come and sign off on the work. When that’s finished, your plumber will have the go-ahead to repair and paint the drywall. After everything is done, you'll need to have inspections made on your home. Looking to repipe your home? Contact the pros at Moore Home Services to schedule an appointment!