Sorting out that DRIP at home - from the horse's mouth


A few months back an outside copper pipe developed a leak longitudinal split on a 90 bend. This pipe is probably 40 years old, installed when house was originally built.
Since plumbers charge more than doctors (probably not in the league of lawyers however who charge like wounded bulls), I had a go at fixing this myself. I don't have a brazing torch, pipe cutter or grease-monkey wrenches, so I tried the band-aid approach.
The bottom line is - Self fusing rubber tape worked well, but several layers and it appears that allowing a thin layer of water between successive layers improves the seal. - Cloth reinforced epoxy worked OK as an interim fix
The small residual leak I can live with (OK - this would not be satisfactory for an inside leak, so I empty my catch bucket into the eagerly watching plants once a week).
The complete gen follows :
Stikka Tape Self Fusing Rubber Tape (Ampol Pty Ltd) - Creates an effective Moisture and water proof seal, and is UV resistant - Moisture barrier seal that does not arc with electricity and water.
Recommended stretch of 100-150% (breaking strain is 400%) Overlap at least 50% Overlap 2-3 times at the end Rubber fusing is effective within minutes Max temperature (continuous) 85C
Cold water, mains pressure, outside coper pipe, crack on 90 bend Leak after epox coat reinforced with cloth tape - approx 30L /4hr (defn. LR0) (sprayed in fine jet)
After several weeks carefully removed epoxy, first crack lengthened and widened and second crack opened on a second 90 bend within 3 cm (don't think the removal caused this). Leak rate looked far higher, hard to estimate but 1L/2min would not surprise me (equiv. 120L /4hr = 4 x LR0).
Double wrap of Stikka Tape, from one side, across both joints then back. Still leaked, steady dripping. The same day put another layer on after thoroughly drying rubber outside. Leak rate was down to 20L /24hr (3L/4hr to compare = 0.1 x LR0).
A week later wrapped a fourth layer, did not dry surface water, trapping a thin layer of water seemed to create a hydrostatic (capillary) seal as the leak rate is greatly reduced by just one layer (one drip every 15s or so). My 20L bucket only half fills in about a week, thats ~ 10L/160h (0.25L/4hr = 1/120 LR0).
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"A few months back an outside copper pipe developed a leak longitudinal split on a 90 bend. This pipe is probably 40 years old, installed when house was originally built."
This must relate somehow to water cooled computer components, right?
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The bottom line is - Self fusing rubber tape worked well, but several layers and it appears that allowing a thin layer of water between successive layers improves the seal. - Cloth reinforced epoxy worked OK as an interim fix
The small residual leak I can live with (OK - this would not be satisfactory for an inside leak, so I empty my catch bucket into the eagerly watching plants once a week).
The real bottom line is that it will get worse, at a very inopportune time. Sometimes you just have to fix it the right way.
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On 29 Jun 2006 09:35:07 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@sunrise.mailshell.com wrote:

100% OT rant. If you are as clueless at DIY as you are at posting, I pity your neighbours.
fu2 alt.clueless
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snipped-for-privacy@sunrise.mailshell.com wrote:

..
Since it is possible this is not a Troll, let me say, there is no way of fixing this that will work other than doing it the right way by replacing the section of pipe. From what you have written, I would suggest paying the doctor price to the plumber and not try it yourself. It is not a difficult job, but it does require a number of easy skills that it appears you lack and learning them will cost you more than the plumber.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit
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A few months back an outside copper pipe developed a leak longitudinal split on a 90 bend. This pipe is probably 40 years old, installed when house was originally built.
Since plumbers charge more than doctors (probably not in the league of lawyers however who charge like wounded bulls), I had a go at fixing this myself. I don't have a brazing torch, pipe cutter or grease-monkey wrenches, so I tried the band-aid approach.
The bottom line is - Self fusing rubber tape worked well, but several layers and it appears that allowing a thin layer of water between successive layers improves the seal. - Cloth reinforced epoxy worked OK as an interim fix
<snip>
You are wasting your time...the pipe needs to be replaced.
If you drain the water out...it should not be too difficult to unsolder it and solder-in a new one...
but whatever you'd pay a plumber would probably be worth it,
Although I'm pretty handy with most things...once in a while I pay a professional... and it's money well spent!
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test..........test............test
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Minger.
--
~ , ~ = ^.\'\'\'.^=
~ ^
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Pipe will probably split when your on vacation or away, run up your water and sewer bill or empty your well causing grief for the well pump, wash out some outdoor plantings or leak back in your home someway doing damage.
patching this although well intended is a bad idea.
get a knowledgable friend to help you repair it right
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