While specifying and installing PEX for hydronic piping in commercial applications is becoming more and more popular, there are still some contractors, engineers and building owners who aren’t aware of the benefits of heating and cooling a structure with this method.


What is hydronic piping?

In a hydronic piping system, PEX piping transfers water from heating or cooling sources (such as boilers or chillers) to terminal units (such as baseboard radiators, fan coils, variable-air volume units and chilled beams) to effectively heat or cool a structure.


Using water instead of air to heat or cool a structure is a much more efficient method to condition a structure. That’s because water has the capacity to transport energy 3,500 times greater than air.


Because PEX does not pit, scale or corrode, it requires fewer nitrites, azoles and other chemicals inside the piping system to maintain a static hydronic environment.

What are the benefits of hydronic piping with Uponor PEX pipe?

  1. PEX can be run in continuous coils up to 1,000 feet in length which results in fewer required fittings.
  2. Making PEX connections involves no hot work, eliminating the need for open flame as well as the expense for fire-watch measures on a jobsite. Plus, PEX connections also eliminate the need for glues, solvents and other dangerous chemicals.
  3. Engineers and contractors have access to BIM support (e.g., AutoCAD® MEP, Fabrication MEP, Revit® MEP and Bentley®)
  4. PEX is significantly lighter than metallic piping (e.g., a stick of copper is three times heavier than a stick of PEX), so PEX is much easier and safer to move around a jobsite as well.
  5. Uponor offers up to 4" PEX pipe, which is the most comprehensive offering available.


How can I learn more about specifying and installing hydronic piping with PEX?

Watch this webinar: “Specifying and Installing PEX for Commercial Hydronic Applications: Opportunities and Lessons Learned


Devin Abellon, P.E., will provide you with a deep-dive analysis of commercial case studies and why hydronic piping with PEX provides superior performance and reliability while reducing project schedules and costs. Abellon has 23 years of experience in the HVAC and plumbing industries with a focus on high-performance and sustainable building design and construction.


If you want to learn even more about how hydronic piping can benefit your business, watch the Engineered Systems and PM Engineer webinar on designing effective PEX hydronic piping systems.