Inspector Paul

Polybutylene Piping

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Polybutylene Leaking
Poly-leak.jpg

Polybutylene plumbing piping was probably the most common type of plumbing supply and distribution piping installed in homes in the greater Charlotte area from the early 1980's through roughly 1996.  It is a flexible plastic type pipe that was less expensive than copper and easier to install.  A class action law suit was filed against the manufacturer of Polybutylene piping and later settled in late 1995.  Claimants believed the piping had a higher than normal failure rate and was defective the defendants still deny any legal liability.

 

ELIGIBILITY


Claim eligibility checklist:


To be eligible for recovery under the Cox vs. Shell Oil, et al., class action lawsuit:

  • You must own or have previously owned a dwelling or other unit plumbed with a Polybutylene (PB) Plumbing System (conducts water to your sinks, showers, etc.), or a PB Yard Service Line (conducts water to your dwelling unit from the water company), or both. Boats and RV's are not eligible. You can also see the definition of Class Member.
  • The PB Plumbing System or PB Yard Service Line must have been installed between 1/1/78 and 7/31/95.
  • The PB Plumbing System must have been installed using PB pipe and insert fittings. The PB Yard Service line must be PB pipe but may have any type of fittings.
  • The PB Plumbing System or PB Yard Service Line must have had at least one "Leak" as defined in Cox vs. Shell Oil, et al.


A "Leak" does not include a leak covered by warranty in the first year after the system was installed, a leak resulting from abuse or unrelated to ordinary use, a leak in a valve or riser that can be repaired without opening the wall (such as under sinks) or leaks in ice-maker lines.  Please visit the terms page to see the full definition of a "leak" and other terms used on this page.

Unless you meet all of the above requirements, you are not currently eligible for recovery under Cox vs. Shell Oil, et al. and should not file a Claim Eligibility Form. If at a later date you have a leak, or later purchase a dwelling or other unit with an eligible system (and have an eligible Leak) you should file a Claim Eligibility Form at that time.
Be sure to review the Filing Deadlines below.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Leak eligibility periods and filing deadlines:

 Leaks occurring prior to 8/21/95 must meet the requirements listed in the table below.

Dwelling Type

Leak Must Occur:

and Must be Filed:

All dwelling types as described in the
definition above

Prior to August 21, 1995

By August 21, 1997



Leaks occurring 8/21/95 and after must meet the requirements listed in the table below. 

Dwelling Type

Leak Must Occur:

and Must be Filed:

Mobile Homes (timed out - the leak
deadline for mobile home and yard
service claims expired 7/31/2005)

From August 21, 1995
and within 10 years of
PB plumbing installation

Within 11 years of PB
plumbing installation

Yard Service Lines (timed out - the
leak deadline for mobile home and
yard service claims expired 7/31/2005)

From August 21, 1995
and within 10 years of
PB yard service line
installation

Within 11 years of PB
yard service line
installation

Single Units (single family, modulars,
townhomes, condos, duplexes, triplexes,
and quads) with Acetal insert fittings

From August 21, 1995
and within 13 years of
PB plumbing installation

Within 14 years of PB
plumbing installation

Single Units (single family, modulars,
townhomes, condos, duplexes, triplexes,
and quads) with Metal insert fittings

From August 21, 1995
and within 16 years of
PB plumbing installation
or 1/31/2009,
whichever 
is earlier

Within 17 years of PB
plumbing installation
or 5/1/2009,
whichever
is earlier

Apartment Buildings and Commercial
or public structures with Acetal or Metal
insert fittings

From August 21, 1995
and with 13 years of
PB plumbing installation

Within 14 years of PB
plumbing installation

 

ELIGIBLE SYSTEMS

ELIGIBLE PIPES and INSERT FITTINGS USED in POLYBUTYLENE SYSTEMS

Polybutylene Plumbing System:  Polybutylene pipe with plastic or metal fittings
Polybutylene Yard Service Line:  Polybutylene pipe utilizing any kind of fitting

Pipes1_eligible_systems.jpg

ACETAL PLASTIC INSERT FITTINGS - REPRESENTATIVE SAMPLE
These are typically gray or white in color with a dull finish.  Most are shown with pipe attached.
Figure (4) is a new fitting

Pipe and fittings may be located at the water heater, behind walls, attic and other areas.

If you have this product in your home, see eligibility periods and filing deadlines.

Pipes2_eligible_systems.jpg

METAL INSERT FITTINGS
These are typically made of copper or brass.
New fittings are shown in (11 and 12)

 

 

Pipes3_eligible_systems.jpg

POLYBUTELENE PIPE
Yard Service Line is typically blue (13), gray (14), or black (15).
Inside Pipe is typically gray (14) or black (15)
Note that polybutylene pipe marked "PB 2110 M" is excluded.

EXCLUDED SYSTEMS

EXCLUDED PIPES and COMPONENTS

Note the exceptions explained below

Excluded1.jpg

VALVES - Typically found under sinks and toilets, are excluded.
Exceptions:  If a wall must be cut to access the leak. 

Excluded2.jpg

ADAPTORS - Typically used to connect polybutylene pipe to fixtures are excluded. Exceptions:  If a wall must be cut to access the leak. 

Excluded3.jpg

OTHER EXCLUDED FITTINGS - Homes that have been originally plumbed with polybutylene pipe with the above fittings are NOT eligible.

Exceptions:  If installed during a previous repair of the plumbing system.

Excluded4.jpg

MANUFACTURED MANIFOLDS
These may be either metal (19) or plastic (20,21)

Excluded5.jpg

PIPES and RISERS - A riser (22) is a pipe running from a sink, toilet, or other fixture to a valve.  Excluded pipe may be white PVC (23), black polyethylene (24), cream CPVC (25), or gray polybutylene pipe marked "PB 2110 M" (26)

Further information on the class action settlement is available at http://www.pbpipe.com/

Call: Paul King

704-467-7328 (INSPECT)

1820 Sunnyside Ave. Charlotte, NC 28204

& 201 Tom Hall St. #236 Fort Mill, SC 29715

704-307-2537-Fax

Professional, detailed, thorough home inspections in Charlotte, Pineville, Matthews, Mint Hill, Weddington, Huntersville, Lake Norman, Waxhaw, Monroe, and Marvin, North Carolina as well as Rock Hill, Fort Mill, Tega Cay, Lake Wylie, Indian Land, York, Clover, and Lancaster, South Carolina.

Copyright 2003-2008 King Construction, Inc. dba Inspector Paul

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