Our bathroom addition was made in such a fashion that the room can
actually get so cold as to freeze the water pipe.
Well it happened and now I have a small 1/2" hole in the hot water
I want to cut out a 2" section and replace to fix. Does anyone know
of a nice site that can give me the step by step here? I am a
woodworker by trade and have never done much with the plumbing except
replacing a faucet.
Here's a couple of sites with good tips:
When cutting out a small section (2") you may not be able to move
the pipe enough to use ordinary couplings. Pick up a couple of
"repair" or "slip" couplings. They solder in the same way but have
no internal stops and can be slid completely over the pipe.
If this is a tight space, protect any nearby wood or paper products
from heat and flame. Put a metal heat shield behind the work and
wet down combustible surfaces.
Consider adding electrically-heated pipe tape in this area.
its hard to fix just a hole in the plubming when working with
copper/soldering.. you might have to go a little further and replace the
complete section or about 2 feet of it.. remmber that if you have water
in there its gonna be hard to work up a good heat to do the soldering
and the water turns into steam and blows out the solder(so you dont get
a good seal) thats what happend to me on a nail hole in copper....
I had a similar problem. We opened faucets on either side of the line we
were working on so the water/steam would have a means of escape, but it
wasn't as helpful as we would have liked. There's also a cloth product
that helps you avoid accidental fires, but it never hurts to keep a
couple of buckets of water &/or extinguishers nearby.
Getting the water out will be a problem. The pipe comes directly up
from a crawl space in the basement where it elbows 90 degrees directly
into a cutoff valve. Unless I cut the pipe off below the burst
somewhere I don't see how I can get all of the water out. However, I
have an advantage in that the top is connected to a flex pipe to the
faucet, meaning there is a lot of play in moving the 2 pieces
together. So I am planning on soldering the bottom first, so the
steam goes out the top, then the top of the new section with the
faucet open. Hopefully the steam will go through the faucet.
Sweating wet pipe is difficult if you know what you are doing. Trying it on
your first time will be a real challenge.
There is an epoxy made for copper pipe. I have only used it once where I
had no room to get a torch in, but it was pretty easy and hasn't leaked
after a year.
Just an idea. Of course, the outside of the pipe still has to be dry, but
the inside doesn't matter.
Thanks for everyones help.
I bought all of the materials and started the prep work.
I have removed a 2 inch section of the damaged pipe and cleaned the
inside of both ends as well as the new piece I cut with a wire brush
for the inside and emory paper for the outside to remove oxidation. I
also stuck a small baster down in the pipe and tried to remove all the
water that I could. I know that there is at least 6 inches of
"dryness" below the part of the pipe I am replacing. Is this
sufficient or is their a chance that steam will build up down there
and condence on the hot pipe near the point where I will be soldering?
email@example.com (Joseph Logan) wrote in message
Well how did it go? I was going to suggest more efforts at draining
the pipe -- most houses have some way to shut off the whole water
system and drain it. Or you could try to finagle it by opening a
lower faucet somewhere, if you have one. Or get a 3 foot length of
plastic tubing and attach it your baster.
Haven't used it much but bread seems to stop water running down into the
work site at which point it turns to steam and you can't solder!
If you can't open a faucet, empty toilet or something 'lower down' in the
system you might be able to push a small plastic pipe down the pipe a
certain distance say 24 inches and either blow or suck out excess water?
As much as steam can be a problem, lots of standing water in a vertical
copper pipe will act as a heat sink, and keep the joint from getting hot
enough for the solder to stick. You'll know if you are going to have this
problem when you solder your pipe.
You may have to remove more of the standing water.
The bread trick is good for drying that area around the joint you are
soldering, and for holding back a little water seepage if you have a bad
shutoff valve that lets a trickle of water pass thru.
Use MAPP, or acetylene, gas with a small tip on your torch; concentrate the
heat. The area to be soldered will heat much quicker than with propane.
Standing water, unless it is very near the joint, shouldn't be a problem as
the joint will heat faster than the water's ability to 'heat sink' it away.
Get some "Sure Sweat" capsules from a plumbing supply house. Don't know if
Lowe's or Home Depot sells them. Get the size for the diameter copper you
have. Push the capsule into the copper with a dowel. The capsule
effectively plugs the line and doesn't let the residual water in the line
interfere with your soldering. The capsules dissolve when you turn the
water on in the line. People have also been known to use bread to plug the
line. It too will dissolve when you turn the water on.
Cut out 3 or 4 inches if you can -- it'll be easier to solder. Get all the
water out the the pipe. Buff the pipe ends with a little emory cloth to
get the oxidation off. Use a "repair coupling" instead of normal a normal
coupling for one end of the patch so you can assemble everything. Brush
the insides of the couplings with a wire "fitting brush" will make it
easier to solder. Use plenty of flux when you solder it; when you get the
pipe hot enough the joint should suck up the melted solder. While the
joint is still kind of hot, wipe with a damp cloth to remove the excess flux.
I use a piece of steel cut out from a can to shield the nearby wood to keep
it from burning.
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