Bathroom Supply Lines: What They Are and How Often To Replace Them
What Are Bathroom Supply Lines And How Often Should They Be Replaced?
From the municipal water supply in Prescott Valley, AZ, to a home’s plumbing system and out through the faucet, water passes through a lot of pipes, hoses, and tubes to make its way into your hands. One of these is a supply line that brings the water from your home’s plumbing and into individual appliances and fixtures that use water, such as a bathroom sink or toilet. Supply lines are located in so many places in a home that supply line damage can be a big deal.
What Is a Supply Line?
Supply lines are made of an inner polymer lining, covered in a braided stainless-steel sleeve. The rubber or plastic tube keeps the water contained, while the steel sleeve maintains the strength the polymer lining needs to withstand water pressure. Even with good manufacturing and materials, supply line damage can still occur, leading to an event like a bathroom leak. Damage can be caused by the following:
- Corrosion caused by chlorine
- Corrosion from household cleaners
How Do Supply Lines Fail?
The most common way a supply line fails is when the steel sleeve corrodes, the metal strands breaking one by one until there is enough of a gap for the lining to poke through and balloon outwards. The polymer lining can’t withstand the water pressure, and this causes it to burst, leaking water. Depending on where this supply line leak occurs, the damage could be merely an annoyance or an outright disaster.
What Should You Look For?
One of the best ways to prevent a leak like this is to keep an eye out for damage and replace supply lines about every three years. Signs of a possible problem would be the appearance of crimps or kinks in the line, pitting or corrosion on the braided steel, or a bubble in the hose. Catching a potential problem before it becomes a problem is often the most surefire way to avoid damages.
Suffering the effects of supply line damage can be costly. However, a little prevention may go a long way to keeping water where it belongs: inside the pipes.