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Purple Copper Pipe


sepefrio
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What would cause the underside of the copper pipe to turn purple. I could not scratch it off and it felt smooth still. The only parts that are purple are the exposed underside in the crawlspace.

New home - Built 2006, never lived in

Water had a horrible rotten egg smell and quite a bit of sediment in it.

I've had other locals tell me it could me from moldy conditions (there is mold there) to the pipe being over heated, to Chinese Drywall. I doubt it's drywall though as I checked for other signs and it doesn't fit.

Anyways, any ideas?

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I've seen "purple" copper pipe inside sewage ejector sumps when I've changed out pumps and switches......the average ejector sump is pretty corrosive and "moldy". Maybe there's some toxin generated by certain molds that makes it go purple....(?)..

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Is the house on a well or city water. Well water with a low PH can do that although I have never seen it THAT purple. Is that a crawl space. If so condensation from ground moisture has somethjing in it that is causing the staining. If it is a crawl then those lines should be insulated, Yes?

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Yes it is a crawlspace with a good vapor barrier . City water. Yes we have identified cases of the Chinese drywall here, but the house had no odor until we turned on the water then it was horrible. The Electrical panel and the few receptacles I removed showed no evidence. The evaporator coils, well I could not see them due to the type of unit, to gain access would require vent removal, real pain in the butt. But the evaporator was gurgling, the exterior of the case frosted over and the heat exchanged (under the coils) was rusted (the repeated frosting and defrosting sent water onto the exchanger)The water (from all faucets) was also full of sediment. I think the water heater may be likely rotted out from the inside. I bet they just let the water sit stagnant in the water heater for the last 3 years.

So there are signs but not the ones I'm told are the most conclusive, inside the receptacles. Chinese drywall was my first guess especially after my clients agent asked if it was. I told them there is no way I can be 100% sure either way. But after talking to a few folks here in town, they all agree it's not the drywall but just separate events. But each also gave a difference possible cause to the pretty purple pipes. BTW, the agent also called the builder and asked if it was the drywall and the builder swore up and down they Chinese drywall free.

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The rotten egg smell is hydrogen sulfide gas produced when the bacteria in the water inside the turned-off water heater reacts with the anode rod.

The discoloration is caused by some kind of chemical reaction to something in the air that the copper is exposed to.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Bill, if that was the cause, and that makes sense (the fertilizer), is there any actual damage to the pipes? Will they just get worse or do they need to be replaced? Would air or soil samples reveal this as the possible cause?

The patina or color on the pipe is just oxidation. It really will not harm anything. Well, maybe it could in 100 years or so.

It might also be possible that the pest control chemicals from the pre-treat could have caused it. Who really knows?

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