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PVC pipe certified for use as venting material?

joel_19 Member Posts: 931
PVC has been used for 20 years and i've never seen a failure. I've seen galvy rust out totaly in one year so what's the advantage with metal if it rusts through on some installs ?? now the plexvent crap was adifferent story that stuff is just plain nasty and alot of it is still out there . That is the stuff Fred is talking about I believe.

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  • Ron Schroeder_3
    Ron Schroeder_3 Member Posts: 254
    PVC and venting question

  • Ron Schroeder_3
    Ron Schroeder_3 Member Posts: 254
    PVC and venting question

    Is anyone on this forum aware of a PVC or other plastic pipe manufacturer that has actually certifed their products for use as venting material for heating or DHW appliances?

    To date I only find appliance manufacturer's giving us permission to use plastic pipe for venting material but I have not yet seen a plastic pipe manufacturer that has certification stamped on their products that indicate testing or a certification to any venting standard.

    I am mindful of numerous plastic venting installations, at least in Canada, that have suffered from catastrophic failures of approved plastic venting materials. I fear the near future might bring the next round of problems for home owners.

    Please advise...
  • jackchips_2
    jackchips_2 Member Posts: 1,338
    It seems if

    there are "numerous plastic venting installations, at least in Canada, that have suffered from catastrophic failures" then there should be the same in this Country.

    Would you pass on some of the conditions you refer to, Fred so we can all learn. Especially the equipment that the plastic is connected to that is causing these failures.

    Also, what do you mean by catastrophic-deaths?


  • Unknown


    CPSC, Manufacturers Announce Recall Program to Replace Vent Pipes on Home Heating Systems
    WASHINGTON, D.C. - In a landmark action, virtually the entire furnace and boiler industry together with the manufacturers of high-temperature plastic vent (HTPV) pipes have joined with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to announce a recall program. This program will replace, free of charge, an estimated 250,000 HTPV pipe systems attached to gas or propane furnaces or boilers in consumers' homes. The HTPV pipes could crack or separate at the joints and leak carbon monoxide (CO), presenting a deadly threat to consumers.

    CO is a colorless, odorless gas produced by incomplete burning of carbon-based fuel, including natural gas and propane. The initial symptoms of CO poisoning are similar to the flu, and may include dizziness, fatigue, headache, nausea and irregular breathing. High-level exposure to CO can cause death.

    To determine whether they have HTPV pipe systems that are subject to this program, consumers should first check the vent pipes attached to their natural gas or propane furnaces or boilers. Vent pipes subject to this recall program can be identified as follows: the vent pipes are plastic; the vent pipes are colored gray or black; and the vent pipes have the names "Plexvent ," "Plexvent II" or "Ultravent " stamped on the vent pipe or printed on stickers placed on pieces used to connect the vent pipes together. Consumers should now check the location of these vent pipes. For furnaces, only HTPV systems that have vent pipes that go through the sidewalls of structures (horizontal systems) are subject to this program. For boilers, all HTPV systems are subject to this program. Other plastic vent pipes, such as white PVC or CPVC, are not involved in this program.

    After checking the vent pipes, consumers should call the special toll-free number (800) 758-3688, available between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. EST seven days a week, to verify that their HTPV pipe systems are subject to this recall program. Consumers with eligible systems will receive new, professionally installed venting systems free of charge. Additionally, consumers who already have replaced their HTPV pipe systems may be eligible for reimbursement for some or all of the replacement costs.

    The program came about as a result of mediation among 27 participants manufacturers of HTPV pipes and manufacturers of natural gas or propane-fired boilers and mid-efficiency furnaces. This is the first time that CPSC has used a mediator to bring together all segments of an industry to implement a program for the benefit of consumers.

    All consumers should have their fuel-burning appliances inspected each year to check for cracks or separations in the vents that could allow CO to leak into the home. In addition, CPSC recommends that every home should have at least one CO detector that meets the requirements of the most recent Underwriters Laboratories 2034 standard or International Approval Services 6-96 standard.

    The following lists the manufacturers participating in this program.


    Armstrong Air Conditioning Inc.
    Bard Manufacturing Co.
    Burnham Corp.
    Consolidated Industries
    Crown Boiler Co.
    The Ducane Co. Inc.
    Dunkirk Radiator Corp.
    Evcon Industries Inc.
    Hart & Cooley Inc.
    Heat Controller Inc.
    International Comfort Prod. Corp.(USA)
    Lennox Industries Inc.
    Nordyne Inc.
    Peerless Heater Co.
    Pennco Inc.
    Plexco Inc.
    Raypak Inc.
    Rheem Manufacturing Co.
    Slant/Fin Corp.
    Thermo Products Inc.
    The Trane Co.
    Trianco-Heatmaker Inc.
    Utica Boilers Inc.
    Vaillant Corp.
    Westcast Inc.
    York International Corp.

    A related recall has also been issued.
  • Jammer
    Jammer Member Posts: 8

    That recall referrs to the short lived "Plex-Vent' and equivelant which was actually produced for installation as a venting product.

    The PVC vent system was simply selected as an approved vent by the folks that make the furnaces. Most PVC manufacturers don't suggest you use them. This is funny in a way. It would be similar to you saying "You may use Kmart Sheets as a Parachute' and Kmart saying "Wha? Eh?"

  • Ron Schroeder_3
    Ron Schroeder_3 Member Posts: 254
    there you have it

    This situation led to the ban (at least temporarily) of non metallic venting in BC under Safety Bulletin BC 47.1. The BC Safety Code Additionally further stipulates that:

    Plastic venting shall not be concealed and that
    Where it must be concealed, inspection panels must be provided.

    What concerns me particularly is , and I quote, "Installations using plastic venting must follow manufacturer's guidlines" and to date I have not seen any guidlines provided by the manufacturers.

    Plexco and Ultravent and Selevent were specifically manufactured expressly as venting material and they failed. PVC water pipe is not manufactured to any venting standard that I am aware of. Are we inadvertently taking the word of appliance manufacturers that products that they have not produced and over whose manufacture they have no control are not a potential safety hazard when (mis)applied in this way?

    Just a thought.
  • pitman9
    pitman9 Member Posts: 74
    My recollection may be spotty on this

    but IF I recall correctly the problem wasn't so much with the pipe as with the joints. Specifically, many contractors weren't using the approved sealants.

    I do know that at least some gas appliance manufacturers are not allowing the use of foam core PVC for venting material. I'm reasonably sure there are contractors using it too.
  • rich pickering
    rich pickering Member Posts: 277

    "Installations using plastic venting must follow manufacturer's guidlines"

    Maybe someone will correct me, but I think in this case manufacturer's refers to the makers of the appliance, not pvc or abs pipe.

  • Steve Ebels_3
    Steve Ebels_3 Member Posts: 1,291
    Correct, Correct, Correct

    Correct that CO-EX or cellular core PVC is not approved for venting.

    Correct that the PVC mentioned in the CPSC notice was high temp PVC, not standard scd 40 DWV,

    Correct that I have never seen any approvals from the PVC manufacturers permitting the use of their product as a furnace or boiler vent.

    Makes you wonder..........
  • jeff_51
    jeff_51 Member Posts: 545
    what is more telling

    is that pvc has been used for venting in the heating industry per appliance manufacturers specs for more than twenty years and I am certainly not aware of any widspread failures, infact I am not aware of any failures. We have more than a million installs with pvc in this area just in the last ten years alone, and have not heard on any failures of materail. (bad workmanship now and again). To the best of my knowledge (which may not be worth much) pvc has an excellent safety record when installed per manufactures specs.
  • Marty
    Marty Member Posts: 109
    apples and oranges

    There is a big difference between that plexivent mess and a 90%+ furnace/boiler made to use pvc. Pvc has been used for about 25 years now on 90% furnaces,, boilers no where near as long or as common(yet). If you were to try and vent something under 90% effiency with pvc that would probably work as well as the plastic stuff did :)
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