Sami Kapanens drömhus byggdes 2012 vid stranden av sjön Kallavesi nära Kuopio i Finland. Timmerhuset är en av de största privatägda villorna i Finland. Huset krävde nästan fyra gånger så mycket byggmaterial som ett normalt småhus.
The plumbing in order in a single day, Nurmijärvi, Finland
The plumbing in order in a single day
The planned plumbing renovation didn't scare the Knutilas, who live in Nurmijärvi, but even the most optimistic expectations were put to shame, when the renovation was over in one day. The guaranteed quality of the work being the main concern, the inhabitants are satisfied with the renovation, which also raises the value of the house.
The Knuutilas are planning to sell the house next summer. For that reason, the state of the plumbing came into question. The 30 years old copper pipes aren't worn down yet, but Veikko Knuutila is in the construction business, and knows that even younger pipes can suffer from corrosion near the end of their life cycle.
− The seller of a single family house carries responsibility for five years after the sale. So, if the pipes were to break during that time, we would have to pay the new owners what it would cost them to repair the damage. So we decided to take care of the matter beforehand - as the Knuutila explains their decision.
Copper was replaced by composites
The Knuutilas began to look for a local contractor to renew the plumbing. From the Internet they found LVI-DALTON Ltd, and thought their web page looked promising. The company uses Uponor composite pipes, which consist of layers - plastic, aluminium and plastic. One benefit of composites is their resistance to corrosion. The internal surface doesn't contain water-soluble substances, which could otherwise cause taste or health problems.
− LVI-DALTON's way of working seemed efficient. I called and arranged a meeting with the entrepreneur Mikko Säteri. We looked over the piping routes, and already the same day he sent a contract tender from him, which I accepted, Knuutila says.
LVI-DALTON is made up of three brothers. Mikko Säteri is a Uponor trained and certified network contractor, who capably handles the installation of Uponor products.
The renovation was over in one day
The work commenced a few weeks after the first meeting. And also ended then. The whole renovation of the plumbing took about one working day, seven hours. Over the years, the Säteri brothers have found an efficient way to divide the labor between them. Already on the evening of that same day, the inhabitants could take a warm shower at home, even though the water had been turned off for the duration of the work. The couple had withdrawn to visit another couple while the renovation was on, and when they returned, their home was cleaned of the traces of the work. Especially Maija Knuutila appreciated the finish.
− We were surprised about how quickly and easily the renovation of the pipes was in the end. We thought that it would last at least a couple of days, perhaps even a week.
Uponor offers renovators the Uponor KOTI service package, through which the customer is put into contact with a local contractor, if he doesn't already have one in mind, or if he can't find the time to search for one. Uponor KOTI –renovator service puts the customer's plans into motion easily and quickly, with a single call. For the Knuutilas, the contractor was found directly, but the LVI-DALTONs also get work offers through Uponor.
A well-known supplier that guarantees quality is such a central concern to many renovators, that they specifically want professionals who use Uponor products for their plumbing renovations.
Water leakage can hide in the structures for a long time
Copper pipes are corroded by for example water with too high calcium content. This is the case in the Nurmijärvi area. Also the flow speed of the water affect the wear on the pipes. There were no leaks to be seen in the Knuutila home, but traces of water damage may not come to light for months, or even years after happening. Because the pipes are inside the walls, drip leaks are hard to notice.
The Säteri brothers Mikko and Ville tell of an instance, where the inhabitant had noticed that water was flowing out through the foundations of the house. The leak had continued for months, until a HVAC entrepreneur was called. A water pipe had leaked inside the floor. Drying out the floor took months. In Nurmijärvi several houses even from the '90s have had to have their plumbing renewed.
− An easy way to notice leakage is to check the water meter. If you turn off all the faucets, the meter shouldn't make a sound. If it is still ticking, there's reason to suspect a leak, explains Knuutila.
Replace in time, be saved from a leakage catastrophe
Uponor has sent a system certificate, that Knuutila finds excellent. It's a binding document about the warranty the company gives for its pipe materials. The entrepreneur on his part guarantees the quality of his work. And if later on, the need for additional parts, like a new faucet placing, it's easy to make the order for compatible Uponor products.
− I'm sure I'd call the same entrepreneur. I was happily surprised by the speed by which the contract was handled, the organization of the work and its quality. As I am in the business myself, I know that these can't be taken for granted - Veikko Knuutila explains.
Mikko Säteri confirms that when the renovation is planned, the length of its duration is one of the first concerns. Another is the price. Veikko Knuutila reminds us that the costs are a fraction of the costs of repairing damage caused by a leaking pipe. That becomes expensive for both inhabitants and for the society as a whole. Insurance companies are paying large compensations. Of course, it may be decided to not pay compensations at all, if the plumbing is old, or several leaks have appeared in them.
− We often have to repair copper pipes again and again in the same house. We've got lots of work to do with repairing them, or with replacing them, as we recommend - Ville Säteri explains.
The Knuutilas no longer have any worries about their home. The five years responsibility of the seller doesn't scare them at all, when moving out becomes relevant.
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