plumbing innovations, bend supports, PEX piping, innovative fittings, SharkBite Max

Discussing Plumbing Innovations – Changing Building Trends for 2024

Foreword by Ian Thompson, Editor

Join Matt and Eric, your hosts, as they delve into the transformative plumbing innovations shaking up the USA’s plumbing industry in 2024. From revolutionary bend supports for plastic piping to advanced push-to-connect fittings, this video delivers a deep dive into the adaptable, efficient plumbing solutions redefining modern construction.

See how ground-breaking bend supports make plastic piping possible without copper stub outs, greatly reducing leak risks. Discover the unmatched flexibility and durability of PEX piping, which also shines aesthetically when combined with copper sleeves. Explore unique fittings that streamline connections and boost efficiency.

Uncover the secrets of systems focused on recirculation and minimal maintenance, which help in diminishing leaks and enhancing water distribution.

Keep abreast of the latest plumbing trends with industry experts on Matt’s new Talking Trades series. Whether you’re a seasoned plumber or simply a fan, this video provides a glimpse into the future of plumbing.

From water conservation to energy efficiency and reliability, these revolutionary innovations are poised to reshape plumbing infrastructure.

Now, let’s hand it over to Eric and Matt.

Revolutionizing Plumbing Innovations 2024

Video Transcript

What’s up guys I’m Matt Risinger. I’m Master Plumber Eric Aune  the build show today. Three Innovations in 2024 that you probably don’t know about in the plumbing world. Let’s get going!

All right, Eric. Let’s start with this side of the table. Most builders in America that are using pex – meaning this plastic piping – in their houses, whether it’s PEX A or B, have a stub out in Copper.

And when I plumb my house, I didn’t want to do that. So what are my options if I don’t want to do this? And why would I maybe want to break from tradition of having copper stubbing out of my house?

Well, to answer your question, what can you do? So they make these Bend supports and there’s a lot of different companies that make something similar. There’s typically a bracket that would span between two different studs, yep.

Uh, and then you can snap these onto them, maybe they ride along a Channel or something like that. The example today we’re just going to show really the fact that you can insert the tubing onto this Bend support and this one’s meant to snap into a bracket. It is.

And if I just carefully pull this around the corner here, by the way that’s PEX B so it’s a little stiffer. PEX A is, it is. So now I’ve just created a Bend support that could be my stub out in place of copper. And look at that, it’ll even still fit in a 2×4 cavity too right? It will.

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Okay, so here’s a couple advantages. Why or here’s a couple reasons that I think it’s better. No fittings, right? So now I’ve kind of maybe I’ve got a home run or this is connected to a main line overhead or below and I’ve just decreased one joint in the system.

Doesn’t seem like a lot but in my house alone there’s probably 15 different stub outs, 16 different stub outs. Yeah we’re talking ice maker, well maybe not for, oh maybe there’s even more. Yeah I wasn’t even thinking about stuff like that.

Anywhere you’re going to have an angle stop basically under cabinet, under cabinet Supply to a sink, to a sink, every toilet, toilet. Yep every traditional floor-mounted toilet is gonna have one, whether it’s you know, as long as it’s coming out of the wall. And so you’re just eliminating a certain amount of fittings in the whole installation.

It’s like 15 fittings. Look every time you get cut the pipe and put it back together, in theory it’s a leak path right? A potential leak path. So then why do people love these so much? What is it about that copper stubbing out of the wall that people like so much?

Well it’s, it’s clean, it’s straight. Yeah it feels durable. That’s true. But I can prove all of that wrong if we had this installed. I could show you that this little bracket here isn’t super stout. I could, like everybody says in my comment section, the most controversial is that right?

Yeah the most controversial comment sections on my videos is this subject right here because they tell me over and over how the drywallers are just going to snap this off or it’s just going to break. There’s no way it’s as durable. I just like this better look. You can like it better that’s fine but we’re talking about is facts right?

So like the facts are there’s no joint required. Oh look at that I just did it wrong you did. No it’s okay. So that is interesting. You can you can bend it with making a a wrong bend. You can you just have to be a little more patient. Got to be patient. I think well I think your your superhuman strength really.

True I do have man hands. So if we just kind of go a little slower you can get it around and get it around there without kinking it. There you go, that’s it. Oh you’re so close, so close. Well anyway it it is doable. You saw me do it there. This is a little, yeah this is a little more flexible piping but I think we’re just maybe we flexed it a little too much with this sample. But either way you’ve got the ability to go around corners now.

You got it and stub out and PEX versus copper. Um look I think it’s obvious I prefer this. Yeah I did this at my house too. Now one mistake I made though to be honest is when these stub out of my house I actually wanted the plumber to come a little further than normal so if I ever needed to change that angle stop in 25 years I could simply cut the pipe and pop a new one on with an expansion tool. And so I forgot to put my chrome sleeve on there that they make.

Well okay sure that’s a great point though. You can you can cover up that plastic. That’s one of the that’s one of the comments I see over and over in my videos is well the copper looks nicer. Okay I totally give you that they do make these nice sleeves that can go over the co or the pex.

Yep and you can get them in different colors typically chrome but you can actually get them in all sorts of colors. And by the way these bend supports could also be used in the wall or just in your general system even if you’re not stubbing out to reduce a fitting.

So you know something about 90s I like to eliminate as many 90s as possible and look at that, that could be just stuck in a wall or a ceiling or wherever and that’s going to eliminate having to put that 90 in there. So I’m a big fan of these bend supports.

I’ve also seen when you plumbed your bathroom in your shop. Yep used a specific brand called hold right? Yeah. Uh and they seem to have some really nice solutions. So that’s that’s my first innovation that I think not everybody knows about in the plumbing world. Controversial too you know for sure.

Let’s go to number two. Yeah now I get excited about these. So uh you could get these types of fittings in all types of flavors right? So these happen to be the ones we’ve got. We’ve got two different types. We’ve got PEX A, or the expansion PEX type of fitting, and then I’ve got a B here with the uh the stainless steel press sleeves on them. Would I call this a manifold or would I call this a multiport or what’s the what’s the right word for these?

Yeah well I think the manufacturers are calling them different names. Manifold is great for me. I understand exactly what you’re saying. Uh they are also called multiport T’s depending on who you’re buying multiport T. There you go. Yeah and so we’ve got a couple different.

So the one you’re holding has what, five different half inch openings on it? Yeah and this is a closed end but you’ve got a flow through. Yeah so you’re going to have a main line. This is going to be installed like on a main line, water flowing through it and branching off down to three different fixtures.

I can then take shorter runs down to maybe from overhead or below to a bathroom group. So this is perfect. So if that was hot that would make a lot of sense because you could flow through it with a, am I getting ahead of you here?

No no it’s so that’s what makes these so. No that’s what makes these so cool is that now I can recirculate. I can put a a return line dedicated return back to the water heater but look at that. So three different T’s in between the t’s you’ve got a minimum amount of piping that you have to maintain because this is expansion PEC

So you can’t have really super short pieces but just in between two T’s you’ve got two different connections there and then two on the outside. So that’s four. We had a third now we’ve got six connections with this one alone we eliminate the the connections in between the t’s here. Okay less leak paths, less. This is at least four less connections than this right? It is and it works out three four it works out to be more compact too cause now you’re not spread out.

Correct but you’re going to spend a few more bucks on that you are. But look it this is less parts. It is you know not as versatile like at alone by itself can be used anywhere in the system. But if I’m plumbing a new construction and I’m doing distribution I want to be as efficient as possible. Okay I want to use the least amount of pipe for sure, the least amount of connections cause that’s time.

Yep it’s also less leak paths. And also I’ve got the ability with a fitting system like this and the tees as well but I have the ability to do like a recirc very efficiently. Get the water to where it needs to be very fast.

I like that. I love that customers like these too and you showed that in a but the other manufacturers are making it for other flavors and varieties yeah this just happened to be I grabbed it out of the one of the bins in my shop but this is just two PK of course but this would be very typical mainline going through to a bathroom group.

And let’s say um a sink in a toilet. Sink in a toilet. Two cold lines? Yeah or a bathtub and a sink. Oh yeah that’s true right? So you full bath you’ve got supply to a shower valve and you’ve got supply to a laboratory. Yeah there’s your hot line your circuz it’s all the way through makes a lot of sense. I don’t think everybody knows about these.

Well so these are super um well liked in just the you know speeding up the installation and then like I said look we’ve got codes that are putting mandating recirc depending on how large the system is saving energy saving water. And we could do that really easily just with one device versus many.

Yeah saving fittings is what I like about both of these we’re saving fittings meaning there’s one less chance for a leak. There’s one less chance for human error. There’s one less part in the system that could be a failure. I like both those.

Well like the like the bend supports, less joints. Honestly I’d like to remind people it’s not about the one individual bathroom. It’s the whole house. It’s the many houses over and over. Yeah saving fittings for sure.

All right and the third innovation that not everybody knows about and I randomly came across this and asked you about it. Uh you know we’ve seen these fittings they’re kind of the Kleenex brand shark bite actually been in the industry 20 years now.

2004 was when they were introduced. Got a brand new version that kind of stood out to me when I was grabbing some parts for a video, max sharkbite. Max what is this?

Well so they did, they made some innovations to a push to connect fitting sharkbite did. Uh and by the spec, the specs are what’s different but you can just visually identify them. So this is all brass but this one seems to have some stainless on it. Yeah so they reinforce the fitting and the connection points with this stainless.

So now they’re saying that this is rated up to 250 psi. Holy cow! At 250° dang or two, 200° something like that. Something like that it’s crazy. I think uh you know maybe we could put the specs on the screen. Sounds good. Uh but the point is they’ve also increased the flow rates and made it easier to install.

So the old system has these little inserts in the end of it so if you’re using it with pex that reinforce the the flexibility, the wall of the pipe. But this pinches the pipe down a little too doesn’t it? It does. It decreases a little bit of flow. You know anytime you’re going to have something inside of the pipe it’s going to do that.

Uh now they remove that within max fitting. It’s not in there anymore. So this, not sponsored by sharkbite, but it’s pretty innovative really. Yeah so when you look through this guy you can see those and when you look through the max there’s no supports in there.

So in theory you’d have a little bit higher flow. Uh but it’s interesting. I wonder if they’ve engineered and this was not in our specs but they’ve engineered something a little different differently on the inside there to be able to get that higher PSI.

I don’t know what it is but that’s pretty fascinating. It’s I think yeah it has something to do with the stainless steel rings that are holding that on the pipes. So that’s sharkbite max.

Eric thanks for joining me in the studio. I appreciate it guys. If you don’t know Eric Anie, he is a master plumber out of Minnesota, the shooting videos on thebuildshow.com.

But even more importantly, we got to tell you about our brand new series that Eric and I just came out with called Talking Trades, where I went around and spent a day as an apprentice with four different tradesmen and women. Uh I spent a whole day as Eric’s apprentice and then we spent some time in his shop talking about his career, how he got into it, how much money he makes, what he likes about his job, what’s hard about his job, how do you become a plumber?

This is a series you need to take your teenager or your elementary school kid off the video games they’re watching on the weekends, sit down on the couch with the bowl of popcorn and watch all three of those episodes. They’re on thebuildshow.com right now. It’s called Talking Trades.

That hamburger menu in the top left, go to Build Original Series, go to Talking Trades and right now we’ve got the first four episodes released. We’re coming soon with more. I’ve got three more tradesmen and women that we’re going to talk to besides Eric. So go check that out. In the meantime, @mechanicalhub on Instagram and of course all his videos on thebuildshow.com. Guys follow us on TikTok or Instagram, otherwise we’ll see you next time on the Build Show.

Talking Trades with Matt Risinger

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