Flexible Pipe Q&A

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Suction Testing

john sebring fl. how can the vacuum be tested to determine if it is operating properly? Is there a guage of some sort to measure suction? I am trying to determine if the motor is operating properly or if there is some sort of blockage in the suction line.

The instrument used is called a waterlift gauge. Waterlift is a measure of vacuum force, a special gauge is produced that can accurately determine this. Most vacuum technicians and repair stores have them in their tool kits.

Does The Pipe Handle Water Suction?

Can these pipes suck up water? Jeff Waco, TX

It is not recommended that these pipes be used for any other application other than normal, dry, in-home vacuuming.

Beam and Electrolux Compatible?

Will this pipe work with BEAM model #287S - We installed in 1992.

Yes, the pipe you used is 2 inch outer diameter so this will slide right over it correctly, for the connection.

Temporary Usage?

I'm thinking of adding a temporary outlet in my unfunished basement. I can tap on to an existing run (PVC t fitting) and drop down 5 ft to an open stud. When I finish the basement, I'll add pvc piping as the solution. Would you recommend flex piping for this temp. solution?

For a temporary solution, flex will be fine. You just want to change it out to prevent any clogs in the future.

PVC to Vacuum Unit

How do you attach the ridged pipe to the power unit. Do you use this flex pipe?

Hi, in nearly all applications the intake on the unit fits an elbow or coupling and the pipe goes directly into that fitting. Avoid using the flex pipe as it can clog easier and restricts airflow.

Flex vs. Rigid Pipe

In a run from second floor attic to a first floor 'attic' in an adjoining wing, I have to replace approximately 6 foot section of vacuum pipe containing four 45 and one 90 degree connectors. Would the flexible vacuum hose be a good substitute? (I would drop or pull it through an abandoned 10" diameter plenum.) ALso, What wire would be best to join hose with plastic pipe? Albert, McGraw, NY

Using the flex pipe where rigid pipe is traditionally used is not a good idea. There is not a clean connection from the flex hose to rigid pipe. It is a clog waiting to happen. The way it connects is the rigid pipe fits snuggly into the flex one and a hose clamp or wire-tie is used to secure it. Debris that enters the flex pipe and needs to reenter the rigid encouters a step from the edge of the rigid pipe. Things will get stuck there and over the years pipe up. If you have to use flex then do so but if there is any way to use rigid then by all means use it.

Use for Exhaust?

Would you use the 2" ID flex pipe for the vacuum exhaust? And do you sell a muffler to redue the noise of the exhaust noise?

Hello we recommend using the central vacuum pvc pipe and elbows, not the flex pipe. Flex has to much resistance and it difficult and unsightly. Here are the materials to use http://builtinvacuum.com/install_shop/pipe-fittings.html and here is the muffler that fits between two sections of the pipe http://builtinvacuum.com/retail/shopretail.php?part_no=260

How to Install a VacPan

Would you please describe the whole process of how you would use this to install a vacpan after the cabinet has been set? Ryan Salt Lake City, Utah

Hello Ryan, first, here is the VacPan installation webpage http://builtinvacuum.com/installguides/vacpan/index.html. The flex hose can be used instead of the rigid central vacuum pipe between the 90 on the VacPan and the first 90. It allows you do slide the assembled and piped VP into place without also having the line up pipe (which is not too difficult and better to use that flex pipe). First, if you have a basement try to enter the cavity below the cabinets from beneath. You will T off the existing pipe in the basement and bring it to the cavity. Cut the kickboard with a sawzaw after you drill an entrance hole and use the dimensions on the install page. You will run wire from the T to the VacPan as you put it all together.

Compare to Non-corrugated Flex Pipe

As mentioned earlier can you name the specific characteristics behind the "unfriendly airflow in flexible pipe" when chosen over the less limited in ply-ability (bend-ability) of Rigid,PVC, pipe. I performed a study on clear, extremely flexible, lexan tubing with like ID & OD, with no corrugated ribbed design structure inside or out. Flex-tubing resembles more of a food grade look. Objects that fit through floor vac tool inlet side run their course perfectly if not using extreme curvature areas when installing clear flex tube around obstructions to main vac unit. Are you referring to inner build up problems or humidity factors with corrugated structure tubing?

Hello, in traditional central vacuum flex pipe there is a corrugation that greatly inhibits airflow. Even our PVC pipe is quality controlled for interior smoothness because it has a dramatic affect. PVC is ideal for airflow because it can be extremely smooth compared to other transits over a hundred feet long with bends and all.

Use in Full Length of Stud Bay?

In situations requiring running rigid pipe perpendicular and through floor joists, which would require cutting the rigid pipe down into short sections and coupling, would it be acceptable to use the flex pipe for those runs and combine it with the rigid pipe in areas where rigid is easy to install?

It really is better for airflow and less clogs to run the pipe with couplings. Being installers ourselves we know the difficulty but we also know the payoff of the more difficult work. Remember, too, that the central vacuum pipe is bendable to a large degree and you can put long sections together.

Use for Installing in Walls?

Is this pipe used for in the wall installation, the same as pvc non-flexible pipe and elbows?

It could be but we highly recommend using the central vacuum rigid PVC. You will have less troubles in the long run and you will have better vacuum by avoiding the unfriendly airflow in flexible pipe.