The Kitec brand of PEX plumbing is a big disclosure and real estate buzzword these days. It’s a type of flexible plastic plumbing supply line that was used in some homes built in 1995-2007 instead of traditional copper which is more expensive but also less flexible. PEX flexible plumbing is traditionally made up of red and blue lines for hot and cold water supply.
The problem started several years after these new homes were built using Kitec plumbing. The main issue is where the plastic line meets up with the fittings, causing corrosion over time. This corrosion then lead to failures in the lines, and the failures lead to leaks around the home….in the wails, ceiling, etc. From what I’ve been told, it’s not a matter of IF, it’s a matter of WHEN these fittings will fail.
Now, before you flip out because you have red & blue plumbing lines….NOT ALL red and blue supply lines are the failed brands/companies like Kitec…so check to see what company/brand is stamped on your lines and do some research…it will look like this…
The real solution is unfortunately not a cheap solution. The answer is for the entire home to be re-piped with copper plumbing…not an affordable fix. You’ll have drywall repairs, water turned off until the home is re-plumbed, etc…major repairs.
One area local to us here where homeowners have been experiencing issues with their Kitec plumbing is the community of Del Webb’s Sun City in Lincoln. Many, but not all, of the homes were built during this timeframe and some of the builders used Kitec plumbing. There has been a class action lawsuit filed in the past, and is still open for claims through 2020 from the looks of it, but from what I’ve heard and read, it isn’t doing much to help with the cost to homeowners experiencing issues. And homeowners insurance often does not cover all of this re-plumbing work….they may just cover the damage the leak caused from water intrusion/damage.
If you want more info on Kitec – there’s a couple great resources I found in looking around:
This is a great time to mention to all sellers, or future sellers….DISCLOSE DISCLOSE DISCLOSE. Disclose everything, even if it’s repaired, even if it’s no longer an issue, etc. If you’re aware that Kitec is in your home, it’s vital that you disclose this to all buyers and let them be the ones to decide if it’s a material factor to them….because it is most definitely a material factor. Would it be important to you to consider in YOUR purchase? Probably…
And it’s a great time to remind buyers of the importance of a home inspection! A good home inspector will look for this kind of thing, especially if they know a neighborhood or city contains products like Kitec.