Every home has a means to shut off the water supply when needed. Oftentimes, there is a shutoff at each fixture in the house, as well as a single main shutoff for the whole home. A manabloc system brings all the plumbing through one central manifold, providing shutoffs for all branches in one place, much like an electrical panel. This allows you to shut off water to the entirety of the branch without needing to shutoff water to the whole home, which becomes very useful when making repairs or remodeling rooms and still being able to have plumbing to other areas of the home.
What problems do ManaBloc's have?
Many manabloc manifolds were installed when Polybutalene piping was commonly used. Polybutalene piping experienced many issues that caused water leaks throughout homes due to several reasons, such as chlorine breaking down the piping or heat expanding and disconnecting the pipe fittings. This impacted the reputation of the systems, though was not a fault of the manifold. One key disadvantage of the manifolds, however, is a difficulty to repair. Parts for manabloc systems are often not widely available, meaning when issues occur in a manifold, it is frequently easier to replace the whole panel than to repair it. As with all types of shutoff valves, manabloc shutoffs are susceptible to leaking when they have not been operated frequently. To prevent causing leaks, your inspector will not operate any shut off valves during the inspection, but will still make note of any issues they find through a visual inspection.