I have some salvaged PVC (Schedule 40) from a run in the irrigation system that I'm rebuilding which is now unused - I'm considering reusing it in the rebuild of the system. Is this foolish?

The salvaged section is SCH-40 pipe from Charlotte pipe, and has some ASTM info on it. I can post a picture if it will help. I could use this 'salvaged' pipe in either the primary part of the system (if acceptable), or in a side-bar to the primary system which is purely accessory, or not at all.

I'm guessing it's likely better to use fully-new pipe and connections in the work I'm doing now, as it should significantly reduce the likelihood of leaks in the new work. If this is the case, I'm happy to hear it, but I'd also like to know what the potential issues of re-using old PVC is, as there is a solitary long run that is non-essential where it would be useful to have a reduction in cost (as small as it may be). Plus it could always go to another project (like watering the garden, or something similar), if the risk is mostly to critical/annoying-to-fix situations like deeply buried irrigation.

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    Has it been exposed to direct sunlight, or not? PVC that is not protected (can just be paint, but somehow) from sunlight degrades, which would seem possible for an irrigation system, depending where that's located. – Ecnerwal Sep 23 '19 at 2:30
  • It has only been exposed to sunlight for the past ... let's say two weeks, while I traced the run in my spare time. It's been underground for approximately six to eight years, based on information from the neighbors about when the change was installed. – user3.1415927 Sep 23 '19 at 2:36

Odds are it's fine, but you have more information to make a proper risk assessment than we do - for example, I wouldn't want to reuse it in my house, around wood or other materials prone to water damage, or if I was running something more valuable or potentially harmful than just water through it; just in case it did decide to fail majorly on me. I probably wouldn't do it if the cost of fittings would be greater than the cost of the pipe, either, since if it failed I'd likely double that cost to fix it.


If not damaged by the storage conditions, old is just fine. Not like the stuff falls apart from old age in normal use, over timescales of decades. Be sure it's clean before primer and glue, but that applies to brand-new pipe as well.

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