What is Quest Piping?
Qest is a brand name given to a type of polybutylene pipe that was commonly used in residential plumbing during the 1970s to 1990s. Most people refer to it as "Quest", rather than "Qest", so we'll generally use the common term in this article.
Quest polybutylene pipe's main function was as a form of plastic potable water plumbing, and it was popular due to its ease of installation, low cost, and durability against freezing damage. It was most commonly installed in new houses along the sunbelt region, and it was also used to repipe older houses in other areas over this period.
Is Quest Similar to Polybutylene?
Quest piping is simply a brand name that polybutylene piping was sold under, meaning that the two terms are interchangeable. Polybutylene is the name of the type of polymer that Quest piping utilizes.
There have been numerous names given to Quest piping, including poly-b, poly-pipes, PB, and PB-1. However, Quest is not the same as other forms of plastic piping, including CPVC, PVC, and modern day PEX (cross-linked polyethylene piping).
Why Might Quest Piping Fail?
There are a number of reasons why Quest piping might eventually fail. The industry behind Quest piping has claimed that there were no inherent problems in the pipes and tubing, but instead issues with the way they were originally installed, specifically with pipe connectors. However, it's been suggested that the failures in Quest piping in the USA are most likely linked to differences in municipal chemical water supplies. This has led to Quest and any form of polybutylene no longer being approved as forms of plumbing material in building codes across the US.
Should I Replace Quest Piping?
If you have experienced one leak in your Quest piping, it is likely that there may be a systemic problem throughout your entire home’s plumbing. This will affect whether you decide to either replace the failed section or choose to repipe all of your Quest piping.
The cost of repairs and damage caused by Quest piping can quickly add up and may easily surpass the cost of a full house repipe. In addition to the slow accumulation of an undetected leak, which can lead to water damage, mold, and other health hazards, a higher volume leak can result in significant damage and costly repairs. Therefore, it is often more cost-effective to consider a full house repipe instead of continually fixing individual leaks in Quest piping.
Can I Sell My House If I Have Quest Piping?
Having Quest piping in your home may make it more difficult to sell, as many buyers and insurance companies are aware of the potential risks associated with this type of plumbing. If you're planning to sell your home, it may be wise to consider replacing your Quest piping before putting it on the market.
We are more than happy to help out prospective sellers with Quest repiping quotes as well as with buyers who want to understand the possible cost of a full home repipe. Contact us for a free quote, and to get any of your questions answered.
Is There a Class Action Lawsuit Involving Quest Piping?
There have been a number of prior litigations around Quest and polybutylene piping.
The most well-known class-action lawsuit involving Quest piping was Cox v. Shell Oil which eventually ended in $950 million being paid out to thousands of homeowners. However, the final deadline for eligibility to receive compensation passed a number of years ago.
If you have Quest piping, and you were not involved in prior litigation, your legal options are now very limited. A more recent class-action lawsuit was filed in 2017, under Hurt v. Shell Oil. This lawsuit was eventually dismissed ‘with prejudice’. This means that it can’t be refiled, making it a lot harder for owners of Quest piping to receive any compensation towards repiping their homes.
What Is A Good Replacement For Quest Piping?
We have done numerous repipes of Quest in the past. Both Copper and PEX tubing are the most common materials used in replacing Quest piping.
We find a majority of our clients choose PEX tubing, but this is dependent on a number of other factors and personal preference. You can read more in our Should I Repipe with PEX Article.
At Repipe Specialists, we use Uponor PEX tubing and high quality copper (Grade L), both of which are USA made and include our lifetime warranty.
How Much Does it Cost To Replace Quest Piping?
It can be hard to judge the total cost of a whole-house repipe. There are a number of individual factors that will affect the cost, including but not limited to:
- The accessibility of your home’s plumbing
- Where your home is situated (this is dependent on your city and state, which will also affect the material and labor costs)
- The company you hire to repipe your home
- Whether you decide for a partial or complete home repipe
- The repiping material you decide to use (Copper or PEX being the most common materials used today.)
Our company specializes in whole home repipes that are normally at a much lower cost in comparison to a generalist plumber. Most of our repipes end up between $4,500 and $15,000. Our How Much Does It Cost To Repipe A House article covers this topic in more depth.
Give us a call today for a free repipe quote. We will be more than happy to talk you through all your options regarding your Quest piping, either in person or through a remote session.