Assessing your plumbing lifespan can be a tricky task. Knowing how long your drain pipes can last can help you be better prepared when it does happen. The last thing you want is for your plumbing system to slowly disintegrate without you being aware and having a sudden, massive expense to make.

So, what’s the plumbing lifespan of your home? This answer depends on what type of pipes you have.


Copper is one of the most common plumbing system types in North America. They are affordable and reliable for home plumbing.

How Long Do Copper Drain Pipes Last?

Copper pipes are known to last up to 70-80 years. However, we recommend they be replaced after 50 years because that’s when they begin to corrode.

Metal Pipes

While copper pipes are the most common metal pipe, there are a host of others. Brass, cast iron, and galvanized steel are also used in plumbing systems.

How Long Do Metal Drain Pipes Last?

These pipes are known to last for 80-100 years. However, you should watch out for corrosion and rusting.

Lead Pipes

If you have lead pipes, you need to replace them immediately. While they are long-lasting, lead pipes are quite toxic and contaminate your water supply.

PVC Pipes

Homes built in the last decade or so generally have PVC pipes.

How Long Do PVC Drain Pipes Last?

They last for as much as 50 years. The biggest advantage that PVC pipes have over metal pipes is that they do not corrode.

When Should You Replace Your Drain Pipes?

Rather than marking your calendar, and waiting for the lifespan of your drain pipes to get over, you should watch out for the signs that you should replace your pipes.

Here are signs when you should replace your drain pipes:

Discoloured Water: Does the water have a reddish or brownish tint? This is an indication of rust and corrosion.

Low water pressure: Low water pressure is a sign of a crack or leak in your pipes.

Random leaks: Did you notice random wet patches on your wall or ceiling? It’s an indication that your pipe is leaking.

If your home is over 50 years old, then you need to start paying more attention to the piping system. Once your plumbing lifespan has run out, things can go horribly wrong quickly if you’re not paying attention. More importantly, if you spot something wrong, get in touch with professional plumbers. At Capital Plumbing in Edmonton, we offer you trusted and quality service.