Can You Use PEX for a Dishwasher?

PEX, an abbreviation of cross-linked polyethene, is a flexible and robust material used in domestic water piping and other major plumbing and heating systems. Due to its unique properties discussed below, the use of PEX for DIY plumbing has increased in recent years. Although it is used in domestic piping, are they ideal for a dishwasher?

Polyethene can be used in a dishwasher as an alternative to copper piping, PVC and CPVC. Despite its ease of use, all the fantastic properties of PEX will be discussed in this article. 

What Can I Use for the Dishwasher Water Line?

Depending on your budget and preference, there are many materials you can use for your dishwasher plumbing. Among the most famous materials is PVC, stainless steel, copper, and CPVC. 

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If you want to cultivate some basic plumbing skills through DIY, it would be better to use PEX. PEX pipes are pretty affordable and easy to use.

You will also need materials and tools to connect the water line to the dishwasher. Some of the materials used during installation include;

  • Wrench
  • Screwdriver
  • Teflon tape
  • Pliers 
  • Compression fittings
  • T-fitting
  • Power drill
  • PEX pipes

Since a dishwasher is connected to the cold-water line (you can click the dishwasher to the hot water), you will need an 18” extension and a valve.

Can You Use PEX for the Dishwasher?

Yes. You can use PEX pipes for your dishwasher. The cross-links make PEX quite solid yet flexible. 

PEX has many unique properties that make it ideal for a dishwasher piping system. It is affordable, readily available and easy to install. If installed properly, PEX pipes can serve you for a long time. Some of the other properties that make PEX the best alternative for dishwasher piping are;

  • Thermal Resistant

Due to cross-links, PEX can withstand temperatures of 120°C-150°C over an extended period. PEX expands, which also prevents cracking in case of low temperatures.

  • Chemical Resistant

PEX does not corrode compared to its counterparts. You will therefore enjoy service for a long without leakages and Water contamination.

  • High Density

Cross-linking makes PEX stronger and more resistant to cracking than the average PE. Pipes made of this material can withstand high pressure and high temperatures. Despite its high density, PEX is very flexible.

  • Ease of Use

It is straightforward to install PEX piping at home. Installation does not require any unique tool or procedure. You can connect PEX to already existing steel pipes. 

  • Color Coding

PEX comes in two distinctive colours: Red and blue. This makes it easier to know which pipe can be used for hot water and which for cold water.

  • Noise Cancellation

Water can flow through the pipes without making any noise compared to copper and steel pipes.

If you are a DIYer, you need to learn the basics of installing PEX pipes; otherwise, you might cause more harm in your kitchen.

Can You Use PEX for the Washing Machine and Kitchen Sink?

With all the improvements made to these pipes, you can use PEX pipes for your vast appliances like a washing machine. However, it would help if you did not connect the line directly to the device. You will need an 18” extension and a valve to connect the pipe to the washing machine. 

A washing machine mainly operates with hot and cold-water supply. You will need to distinguish which pipe to use for the two supply lines

You can also use PEX for kitchen sinks. 

Can You Use PEX for All Plumbing?

Yes. Due to its environmental cracking resistance, thermal resistance, chemical resistance, strength and flexibility, you can use PEX pipes for almost all plumbing projects. 

However, I don’t think PEX will be a suitable alternative in the case of drain hoses. PEX pipes are somehow thin, which can clog in the matter large food particles remain.

Where is PEX Not Allowed?

Despite the properties mentioned above, there are some downsides associated with the use of PEX for your plumbing projects. Knowing where and when to avoid using PEX pipes will help you save a lot of effort and money, correcting mistakes you could have avoided.

  • PEX is made of plastic materials. It is therefore prone to pest infestation. For this reason, it is not advisable to use PEX pipes in underground fittings. 
  • Despite being so strong and resistant to high temperatures, you cannot connect PEX pipes directly to a hot water line. You cannot also install PEX pipes near recessed lighting.
  • PEX is still sensitive to UV lights. This is worth thing to note when installing these pipes. There should be little exposure to sunlight and even home bulb light. Most brands recommend using these pipes in total darkness. 
  • Cross-linked polyethene might be resistant to chemicals but might leach BPA and other chemicals. There are three types of PEX pipes: A, B, and C. Type B is the most recommended PEX pipe. 
  • PEX is semi permeable. This means it can allow water and other liquids to enter the pipe, increasing contamination risk. 

Before installing pipes, you should revisit your local codes to determine if PEX is right. 

What Can I Use for the Dishwasher Water Line?

When connecting a dishwasher to a water supply line, the goal is to find a material that will work effectively. Since you might need to install your dishwasher further away from your kitchen sink, you will need a material that is flexible and resistant to high temperatures and chemicals. 

From the guide above, PEX fits the description. However, you will need to learn the basic rules of using PEX pipes and make sure you adhere to your local codes. 

Conclusion

Although a group of homeowners is skeptical about using PEX in their plumbing, many plumbers embrace this great pipe. PEX pipes are easy to install. This is what makes them DIYers best friends. 

PEX pipes are resistant to chemicals and high temperatures. Therefore, you can use them in your water supply line, either in the kitchen or bathroom. However, a connector is needed when connecting PEX to a hot water supply.

This guide will provide you with all the information about PEX, like its advantages and disadvantages. 

It is worth noting that if you lack plumbing skills, you can always find an experienced licensed plumber in your locality.