The tubing pex-al-pex has an aluminum layer in it. This question is about tubing with an aluminum layer inside and not, not regular PEX-A or PEX-B.

My house has (or had) kitec pipes. I'm in the process of removing them. If you want to cut pe-al-pe or pex-al-pex for the purpose of maintenance (such as installing fitting to PEX to make the run shorter) how do you cut it? With regular PEX you'd cut it with a ratcheting pipe cutter. But should I cut through a pipe with a pretty thick aluminum layer using my nice Ridgid pipe cutter? Or are you supposed to cut this pipe with a band saw, or sawzall?

Is it possible to cut it with a ratcheting pipe cutter? Or would this likely ruin it? On the run I was able to totally replace, I removed this tubing with an angle grinder and a tile/mason blade.

Side view of PEX-AL-PEX:

Picture of PEX-AL-PEX

My ratcheting pipe cutter:

enter image description here

  • My electrician cut 4/0-4/0-4/0-1/0 aluminum wiring with a ratcheting wire cutter. I can't imagine that this very thin "welded aluminum layer" would cause much of an issue...
    – FreeMan
    Feb 17, 2023 at 12:42

2 Answers 2


I broke my pipe pluers cutter and used one of the rotating blade cutters.

Worked well but not quick however I was working for my son for free 😀

An example: https://www.screwfix.com/p/rothenberger-minicut-pro-2-6-22mm-manual-copper-pipe-cutter/71782

  • when you say rotating blade cutter, what do you mean? Feb 17, 2023 at 7:56
  • @EvanCarroll editied to provide a link to an example.
    – Solar Mike
    Feb 17, 2023 at 8:03
  • ahh, a copper pipe cutter, i'll try that. those are cheap so if it works that's great. you cut pex-al-pex with that? just want confirmation that there was an aluminum layer in there and it wasn't regular pex Feb 17, 2023 at 8:04
  • 1
    @EvanCarroll I am smart enough to recognise the layer of aluminium.
    – Solar Mike
    Feb 17, 2023 at 8:05
  • just checking. ;) Alloys of aluminum can be substantially harder than pure copper, so it just seems tools made to cut through copper won't work. But I'll have to try it. =) Feb 17, 2023 at 8:13

Mine doesn't have a flat blade, rather V-shaped like this one:

enter image description here

The tip of the V shaped blade scores the pipe and starts the cut which prevents flattening the pipe, but you have to turn it around the pipe of course, so if cutting a pipe that's very close to a wall you have to go slowly and wiggle it to get the blade in and not squeeze the pipe into oval shape.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.