A plumbing system is essentially the heart and soul of every home. As such, it’s only right that everything that makes up your plumbing should at least be of good quality. Unfortunately, this cannot be said of all homes. Some home owners spend a lot on pipes and fixtures, but skimp on the smaller stuff like the supply tubes and supply valves, which are also known as stops and risers.
There are actually home owners who have great plumbing systems but go for cheap stops and risers. That may be fine in the beginning, but it won’t be long before they eventually blow off the water supply line and cause flooding. If you don’t want this to happen to you, pay closer attention to the stops and risers that you have under your sinks and toilets, and see if they’re of good quality or if they need replacing.
Characteristics of poor quality stops and risers
It is important to inspect your stops and risers and take note of what they are made of. If your supply valves are made of plastic, then you should be concerned about it. The same goes for ones made of old brass, as well as supply valves and supply tubes that are designed to be just one piece. When the supply valve is operated, it’s just a matter of time before leaks happen at the packing nut or around the stem of the handle.
As for flexible supply tubes or lines, braided stainless steel with brass barbed fittings is more preferable to vinyl supply tubes. Keep in mind, however, that there are braided stainless steel supply tubes that have plastic tubing in the center, and this plastic tubing can fail and eventually cause leaks. If anything, you should make certain that the stainless steel braid doesn’t have twists, kinks, nicks, tears or any kind of deformation.
Today, most faucets are already made with pre-installed flexible risers. However, if you want longer lasting ones, we recommend that you choose chromed copper supply risers, which is mainly composed of a single piece of copper mechanically connected from the valve to the faucet. With flexible risers, leaks usually burst through the tubing wall. With chromed copper supply risers, leaks, in case they do happen, will typically drip slowly because of the material, and that will slow the leak long enough for you to do something about it as soon as you can.
Have a professional plumber inspect your stops and risers
It is but natural for many home owners not to know much about quality stops and risers, and this is why it’s always best to have a professional plumber inspect your stops and risers. Sure, you might say that your existing supply tubes and supply valves are not causing you any problems, but they could in the future, especially if they are poor quality stops and risers. A professional plumber can easily identify the kind of supply tubes and supply valves that you have, and make an appropriate assessment that will help spare you from flooding problems in the future.